Details of the new and updated Suzuki models launching in Australia in 2016.
Vitara Turbo — April
Suzuki’s sales in Australia have bounced back in 2015, up 11 per cent. 2016 is shaping up even better.
April will see the Japanese company launch a new version of its most interesting new model, the reborn Vitara, with a new turbocharged engine.
Marketed in Europe as the Vitara S, the Vitara Turbo’s 1.4-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine produces 103kW/220Nm — a 17kW/64Nm advantage over the current 1.6-litre four-cylinder naturally aspirated petrol.
Suzuki Australia says the Vitara Turbo will be available in front- and all-wheel drive, and will become the flagship in the line-up, replacing the RT-X.
Suzuki hasn’t confirmed final pricing and specifications for the Vitara Turbo at this stage. The outgoing 1.6 RT-X is available exclusively with AWD from $31,990 plus on-road costs.
The Vitara RT-S with the existing 1.6-litre engine will continue as the entry point to the range, retaining its $22,990 drive-away pricing.
Additionally, all Vitara models will come standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto from January, increasing the value further.
Baleno — potentially Q3
The reborn Suzuki Baleno could come to Australia around September 2016, expanding the company’s light car line-up — playing to its strengths.
Suzuki Australia is currently working through the business case for our market. Given it will come out of India, the odds of sharp pricing seem good.
Revealed in Frankfurt last September, the five-seat Baleno is 3995mm long, about 150mm (half a foot) longer than a Swift. But boot space is rated at 355 litres with the rear seats up, more than 50 per cent greater.
There are two engines globally, headlined by a new unit called the 1.0-litre Boosterjet. This three-cylinder turbocharged direct-injection petrol engine develops 82kW/170Nm and can be paired with either a five-speed manual or six-speed automatic.
The Baleno will also be available with a 1.2-litre four-cylinder motor that makes 66kW of power and 120Nm of torque, and can be had with either a five-speed manual or CVT.
Beneath the Baleno’s “liquid flow” skin, the city hatch is based on a new Suzuki platform that’s said to increase rigidity by 10 percent and reduce weight by 15 percent compared to the company’s current offerings.
Features available on the new Baleno include xenon headlights, LED driving lights and tail-lights, climate control air-conditioning, radar-guided adaptive cruise control, driver adjustable speed limiter, and a 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system that’s compatible with Apple CarPlay/Android Auto.
Suzuki Ignis — Q4
The return of Suzuki nameplates from the 1990s (Sierra, Vitara, Baleno…) could continue in the final quarter of 2016 with the potential launch of the new Ignis.
Based on the Suzuki iM-4 concept revealed at the 2015 Geneva motor show, the all-new Ignis debuts cool styling that follows the trend set by the newly launched Vitara.
At 3693 millimetres long, the little Ignis is barely larger than a Celerio, while its tallboy design is somewhat reminiscent of the original Sierras.
Expect the 1.0-litre directly-injected turbocharged petrol Boosterjet engine to appear in the Ignis.
The interior images show a new design trend for Suzuki with a Mercedes-Benz-esque floating screen atop the dashboard and Vitara-style changeable colour panels for the dashboard.
The Australian Ignis business case is being worked through alongside the Baleno, though the Ignis looks set to be imported from Japan.
Should both of these cars arrive, Suzuki will have four models in the Micro/Light segment, and three in the small SUV market.
Suzuki Kizashi stocks are understood to be sufficient to see the company through to about the middle of 2016, but beyond that its future is in some doubt. The cpmpany has only sold 119 this year — giving it just 0.3 per cent market share.