- SUVs

All-New Suzuki Vitara 2016 – The Compact SUV Re-Invented

The all-new Vitara is the latest offering from the Suzuki stable. There is no doubt that Suzuki has re-invented the compact SUV in all-new Vitara, which is all set to smash the automobile market. It may even become a rocking hit. There are many buyers who can’t afford to pay big money to own an SUV, for them, the all-new Suzuki Vitara is the best affordable compact SUV in its segment. Without a doubt, many small hatch car buyers will now have to think twice before finalising their decision to buy the vehicle.

The automobile market has become quite competitive and Suzuki has introduced this compact SUV to retain its fair market share. The all-new Suzuki Grand Vitara starts from $22,990 (on-roads costs extra) – its specs coupled with pleasant fuel economy figures should attract more than a few buyers from the usual small hatches. This car is available in 2 specs and both are well equipped. The entry level RT-S ($22,990 plus on-roads costs) comes in front-wheel-drive only and the RT-X ($24,990 plus on-roads costs) offers all-wheel-drive and a standard auto.

The new car is the makeover of the Vitara nameplate; however, it is not the successor of the current Grand Vitara. On the contrary, this small wonder competes against style-driven compact SUVs like the prosaic Ford Eco Sport or the Renault Captur. This new car is ideal for a week in the city, with adequate flexibility to drive towards the beach on the weekends. It is adorned with a sunroof, leather seats and little extras to justify its extra cost.

Suzuki strongly believes in Vitara’s personalisation choices as the key to the car’s success. 6 paint finishes are available out of which 3 come with a contrasting black roof as a $995 alternative.

Undeniably, this compact re-invented SUV is quite promising!

The Drive

The all-new Suzuki Vitara is powered by an efficient 1.6-litre petrol engine with VVT that renders 86kW of power @ 6,000 RPM and 156Nm of torque @ 4,400 RPM. It comes with a 5-speed manual or 6-speed automatic, front wheel drive for the RT-S model and a 6-speed automatic, four-mode all wheel drive for the RT-X model. It is equipped with Mac Pherson strut front and torsion beam rear suspension. It has got electric power steering, solid rear rotors, ventilated front rotors and 4 wheel disc brakes.

Suzuki’s expertise dates back to 1970s when it introduced its first LJ10 series. That car has developed over the course of time into the Jimny, which is available to this day. Since then, Suzuki hasn’t looked back and has been successfully manufacturing and supplying small, light and amazingly capable compact 4×4 vehicles. No doubt, this new Car is certainly focused towards city driving; however, that strong DNA has assisted in designing the current vehicle. Driving the manual car in the city is a breeze and it brings to attention a smart shifting box and a pleasant feel of the clutch, which makes it quite easy to drive. There are no glitches to maintain the highway limit; however, it is recommended to leave adequate space while overtaking.

  • RT-S variant render front wheel drive only, which is a good option for the first time or young car buyers who just want to drive in the city and highways.
  • RT-X variant is equipped with impressive all-paw traction with an automatic transmission and is perfect for those who are looking for all-wheel-drive grip.

The system will supply power to the rear wheels as it discovers grip when left in auto mode on gravel. To respond to low-traction surfaces, ‘snow and mud’ setting pre-emptively divides power to the rear axle from a standstill and fine-tune the ESP. Between the front and rear axles, a 4×4-lock mode allocates an even 50:50 torque split and to keep revs up, sports mode changes the automatic shift points. Additionally, on tight and zigzag roads, sports mode shuffles torque to the rear axle and ends up being quite a bit of fun. As far as the ride quality is concerned, Vitara is firm and at no stage, it feels too stiff, nor does the suspension hop or stammer on uneven roads. The steering is sharp, which carries a nice weighting and is pinpoint exact, which is something that you would not always expect from an SUV.

Fuel Economy

Fuel economy is the centre of attraction. As per the official figures, the RT-S manual renders 5.8 litres per 100 kilometres and the RT-X renders 6.3 litres per 100 kilometres.


The all-new Grand Vitara is equipped with seven airbags (dual side, dual front, driver’s knee and full-length curtain), ABS brakes with electronic brake force distribution, hill descent control, front height adjustable seatbelts with load limiting pre-tensioners, a reversing camera and hill hold (auto only).

The Interior

The interior of Vitara has been smartly made that strikes and impresses you. It is well built and set up for practicality.

You can customise the decor panel and air-con vent rings with an option of changeable panels that ranges from a bold orange to a vibrant turquoise or contemporary stark white, to a more refined gloss black for a small additional cost.

The Vitara has good space inside in spite of its compact external dimensions. While driving, you get a clear front view as well as good all-round visibility, all because the driving position is higher than the usual. The front seats are quite comfy for a longer drive, provides adequate thigh support, and well-shaped bolstering.

It is equipped by decent boot space of 375 litres, which outstrips the Mazda CX-3 and Holden Trax. To locate smaller items, there is a pocket on each side and an underfloor compartment to hide valuables.

RT-S variant: Single-zone climate control, cloth trim, remote central locking, power windows and mirrors, cruise control with speed limiter, trip computer, leather-wrapped multifunction steering wheel, LED daytime running lights, 17-inch grey alloy wheels and analogue clock.

RT-X variant: (In addition to RT-S): Electric panoramic sunroof, proximity key and push-button start, electric folding mirrors with indicators, leather and suede seat trim, front and rear park sensors, 17-inch polished alloy wheels, auto lights and wipers and LED low-beam headlights.

Infotainment: Four speakers (RT-S) or six speakers (RT-X) audio, seven-inch touch screen, satellite navigation, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, Mirror Link (for compatible smart phones) and iPod USB connectivity.

Luggage Capacity: 375 litres, which is stretchable through 60:40 split fold rear seats.

Summing Up

The Suzuki brand has a brilliant history for manufacturing SUVs. The all-new Vitara is built focusing the tight corners for city driving. Vitara’s compact dimensions are just perfect for zipping through the busy city streets, which is nicely mingled with roomy and elegant interiors and boasts of a fantastic infotainment system. It shines on the road and is an excellent buy for young buyers. People who can afford RT-X variant will get hold of the all-road grip (4-wheel-drive).

About Tony I. May

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