Suzuki’s fan-favourite Jimny, recently revised for a strong march into its 17th year on the market, will retain its off-road prowess even in its next incarnation.
That’s according to Suzuki UK sales boss Dale Wyatt, who told Top Gear magazine this week that buyers can expect more of the same - but better.
“The next Jimny will be an evolution. It will follow the same recipe. When you see it, you’ll know it’s a Jimny,” Wyatt said.
Wyatt added that for existing owners and fans of the Jimny, the tiny off-roader is already everything it needs to be, in terms of capability. There’s “no argument to change it”, he said.
There’s a built-in audience for the Jimny, Wyatt said, with around 1500 sales each year in the UK even now - and all without a cent spent in advertising.
The Jimny also remains popular in Australia despite its age, although a brief absence has seen numbers drop off in 2013.
The newly updated model, with attractive drive-away pricing, could see sales return to the 820 mark achieved this time in 2013.
Still, the current Jimny, although immensely capable, is not much chop on-road. And that’s to be expected, Wyatt told Top Gear, with the absence of refinement being part of “why it’s so good at what it does”.
For the next Jimny, expected to launch sometime in 2017, we can likely expect Suzuki to offer a greater balance between on- and off-road ability.
New assistance technologies are likely to feature, ranging from safety systems for the road and amateur-protecting gear for the bush.
Most importantly, Wyatt said, the Jimny will remain a compact model - although modern safety requirements and construction will likely result in some amount of bulking up.
Watch for the first hints of the next Jimny to appear at a motor show in 2016, ahead of a 2017 market launch.