The so-called Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) or Crossover has been selling particularly well for a while now, thanks to buyers looking for a car that can tick all the boxes such as; space, practicability, economy and performance.
So, this week I have the rather good looking Suzuki Vitara S on test and I have to say, it’s putting on a pretty good show in convincing me that maybe this is the one we really should all be looking at.
Power and Efficiency:
The Vitara ‘S’ is powered by a four-cylinder direct injection turbocharged petrol engine that produces 140ps at 5500rpm and 220Nm of torque between 1500-4000rpm. 0 to 62 mph is dealt with in 10.2 seconds – moving onto a top speed of around124 mph.
The official fuel economy figures from Suzuki are; 52.3 mpg (combined) with a CO2 rating of 127 g/km - although the best I could get was around 44mpg, but then I was not really trying to get near what Suzuki had said was possible.
On the road:
I like the way the Vitara handles – but I do feel the suspension needs to be a little stiffer - saying that, when the road gets twisty – it is more than capable of holding it’s own thanks to the ALLGRIP 4-wheel drive system which in real terms performs well. You also get a lot of information through the steering as to what the wheels are doing on the surface of the road - which all helps in giving you a lot of confidence into the corners.
If you do decide to take the Vitara onto a muddy field - or a slippery surface – you can be assured it will do its best to move you along at a reasonable pace, whilst keeping you on the straight and narrow.
Design & Technology
My test car was fitted with suede seating and red interior accents which lifts even the most boring of interiors – Not that the inside is boring, but you do sense the Vitara was set out to be more practical that luxurious.
Space – well let’s just say it has bags of it – along with a decent driving position and plenty of room in the back for three adults - even people who are 6ft plus would have no problem fitting in. The boot is pretty good too with max luggage capacity coming in around 710 litres.
Some of the standard features on the Vitara S include; LED daytime running lights, LED projector headlamps, ALLGRIP 4-wheel drive system, adaptive cruise control, DAB digital radio with 6 speakers, USB, Bluetooth and iPod, driver and passenger front, side and curtain airbags, ABS with EBD, Electronic Stability Program, Hill Hold Control and Hill Descent, front & rear parking sensors and rear parking camera.
To sum up: Suzuki have done a fantastic job here - and I expect the Vitara S to sell well in what is now a fast paced SUV market.
Standard car price (on-the-road) £22,249 By Anthony Yates