If you have the Suzuki Jimny on your wishlist, you’d know about the plans of Maruti Suzuki to produce the vehicle in India and may even have made the journey to Auto Expo 2020 to see the plucky metal off-roader. We can now tell, however, that what you see is not what you’ll receive. That is, not in the launch process. That’s because the 3-door edition sold abroad won’t introduce the Jimny in India. It will instead come with a larger, new 5-door body style that is under development.
A wider cabin and the introduction of rear doors would render this 5-door Jimny ideal for family buyers but what’s fascinating to see is how the extended dimensions, particularly the longer wheelbase, have an effect on the potential of the off-roader in the rough. Aside from the height, the Jimny 5-door would in its simple ingredients be no different from the 3-door edition.
Based on a ladder-frame platform, the 5-door Jimny sports solid axles at both sides, and utilizes four-wheel drive with low-range transfer case. The 5-door India-spec will be powered by the 105hp, 1.5-liter K15B petrol engine that can also be used in the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz, Ertiga and Vitara Brezza.
The development of the 3-door Jimny is scheduled to begin at Maruti Suzuki’s Hansalpur plant in Gujarat, about June 2020, with the entire output intended for exports. The 5-door Jimny development will begin six months later with the output shared between India and the export markets.
Maruti can sell the Jimny 5-door with prices beginning just under Rs 10 lakh at their premium Nexa outlets. The Jimny would go up against off-roaders like Force Gurkha and Mahindra Thar for the money and could also be considered an alternative to like-priced compact SUVs, which included Maruti’s Vitara Brezza.