The Vitara remains to be one of Suzuki’s most enduring automotive nameplates in the Philippines.
Starting out as a tough and plucky little sport-utility vehicle (SUV) that offered more comfort than the Suzuki Samurai, the Vitara (and later, the larger Grand Vitara) has provided car buyers with alternatives to crossovers like the Toyota RAV4 and the Honda CR-V since the 1990s.
In its final form, the Vitara was a funky, five-seat crossover that was sadly discontinued on June 2022, with the carmaker citing high costs from importing it from Hungary.
But just a month after that, Suzuki unveiled its all-new Grand Vitara in India.
Toyota hybrid tech
Much like the all-new Toyota Innova, Suzuki and Toyota collaborated to develop this crossover. Its sibling is called the Toyota Urban Hyryder.
In fact, the Grand Vitara is available with Toyota’s 1.5-liter, twin-cam, 12-valve inline-3 gasoline-hybrid engine producing 116 PS and paired with a continuously variable transmission. Suzuki claims this all-wheel-drive variant can provide up to 27.97 km/L.
There’s also a 1.5-liter, twin-cam, 16-valve inline-4 mild-hybrid powerplant from Suzuki, which pumps out 115 PS and is coursed through either a 5-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic. All-wheel drive is optional with this drivetrain.
As a side note, Suzuki is also one of Toyota’s partners in its planned revival of the Toyota MR-S sports car.
The 2023 Suzuki Grand Vitara is significantly larger than the last Vitara sold in the Philippines.
While its RAV4 and CR-V sparring partners have become smooth-shaped crossovers, the Grand Vitara continues the fine tradition of being a more “rough-and-tumble” SUV.
The prominent, chrome front grill includes a large chrome bar that leads the eye to the LED daytime running lights. What appears to be the main beam resides lower down the bumper.
Generous amounts of black plastic cladding are used on the lower bumpers and the fenders, with a strong character line accentuating the Grand Vitara’s high beltline. Chrome is also used to more strongly define the C-pillar.
Out back, the long LED taillights define the crossover’s width, along with the reversing lights placed in little pockets. The pert rear bumper accentuates a seemingly generous departure angle, which isn’t really that important in the grocery parking lot.
The only odd aspect of this new Grand Vitara is the rather small wheels – a larger set of alloy wheels would really work with it.
Would a hybrid Suzuki Grand Vitara appeal to you, if it were sold here?
Source: Would the hybrid 2023 Suzuki Grand Vitara be a hit in the Philippines?