The Suzuki Vitara is a well established player in the global Crossover market and has proven to be a great success worldwide.
The Vitara was first launched back in 1988 so they really know this market very well.
The big news for 2019 is that they have dropped the diesel engines.
Now it is available with either a petrol 1.0 litre, or as I am testing this week the 1.4 litre booster jet 4 cylinder petrol.
For 2019 the Vitara gets a few cosmetic upgrades and better interior trim. Prices start at €20,995
So has it any street cred?
With eleven great new colours, a smart design and plenty of choices when it comes to personalisation the Vitara does make its mark on the street.
From certain angles though I feel the two tone 17” alloys look as though they don’t fill the wheel arches enough for me. Minor changes to the front and rear lights define the 2019 model.
What’s it like inside?
The cabin is attractive and well laid out and it all feels very well put together, let down only by the cheap hard touch plastic of the interior door panels.
I do like the commanding driving position and excellent all round visibility.
Standard equipment in the SZ5 is really comprehensive and beats many rivals at this price point.
Highlights include seven airbags, 17-inch alloy wheels, DAB Radio with USB and Bluetooth connectivity, automatic air conditioning, rear parking camera, front and rear parking sensors, rear privacy glass, Smartphone link audio and navigation system, keyless entry with start button, Adaptive Cruise Control, Radar Brake Support and a great panoramic sunroof which opens electrically to almost the full roof length.
Suzuki ALLGRIP intelligent four-wheel drive is an option, two wheel drive is standard.
Naturally the items we now expect such as remote locking, electric windows and so forth are included in all models.
The interior is reasonably roomy seating four in comfort but five at a squeeze. The land area is pretty decent and of course the rear seats fold don or can be split 60/40.
What’s under the bonnet?
There are two engine options, a 3 cylinder 1.0 litre petrol or 1.4 litre booster jet petrol.
Today, I am road testing the 140 bhp 1.4 litre booster jet option which is mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox with drive to all four wheels via the intelligent All GRIP all wheel drive with selectable Snow and Sport modes as well as an electronic differential lock.
Performance is good, and with well chosen gear ratios this Vitara proves a refined motorway cruiser.
Suzuki claim a 0 to 100km/h time of 10.2 seconds and a top speed 200km/h. Road tax is €280.00 and my test car burned an average of 7.1 litres of fuel per 100km.
Will I enjoy driving it?
The Vitara is set up for comfort and in that it delivers. It proves quiet and refined and it handles well too so in that it is an enjoyable car to drive.
Wind road and tyre and engine noise are all well suppressed.
The steering is a bit lacking in feedback but this is not a car you will hustle along rather it encourages steady sedate motoring.
So to the Verdict!
The pricing is good, the specification is excellent, and its frugal, practical and stylish with great reliability and an extensive warranty. The Suzuki Vitara then is everything you could want in a modern Crossover.
The Suzuki Vitara SZ5 1.4 litre booster jet costs from €26,495.