Suzuki, known primarily as a maker of small vehicles and high-performance motorcycles, marks the global debut of the 2010 Suzuki Kizashi (pronounced "Kee-Zah-Shee"), the company's first entry into the all-wheel-drive sport sedan segment. Benchmarked against some of the leading cars in the world, the all-new 2010 Suzuki Kizashi becomes an instant car-of-the-year contender in its own right. With the launch of the Suzuki Kizashi, Suzuki delivers a unique blend of dynamic performance attributes with premium design aesthetics and craftsmanship yet to be experienced in this category. Scheduled to arrive in North American showrooms this winter, the Suzuki Kizashi will serve as the company's flagship vehicle, further expanding and strengthening its current product line of high-quality small cars, trucks and SUVs.
"In developing and naming our newest automotive introduction, the Japanese word 'Kizashi,' which tells that something great is coming, seemed appropriate for the vehicle," said Kevin Saito, president, American Suzuki. "Now that the production model Suzuki Kizashi has arrived, we expect the name and the product itself to clearly demonstrate the bold statement this company knew it would be making with the debut of this vehicle - while also simultaneously suggesting what will emerge in the Suzuki lineup as we look ahead to the future."
The Suzuki Kizashi sport sedan, which originates from the Suzuki Kizashi Concept series introduced over the last two years, follows a similar design theme and appreciation for performance previously illustrated by the three eye-catching and immaculately designed concept vehicles. The production Kizashi redefines the traditional performance sedan and moves the Suzuki brand upscale. Furthermore, its active and energetic identity, a core component of the Suzuki brand DNA, is tempered by the vehicle's overall mission to provide a strong, refined urban performance.
Built at Suzuki's brand-new manufacturing facility in Sagara, Japan, the 2010 Kizashi is equipped with a standard 2.4-liter DOHC inline four-cylinder engine offering a more potent standard engine than many competitive best-sellers. The engine employs both an aluminum block and cylinder heads, providing a lightweight installation; aluminum pistons with low tensile force rings deliver improved power and efficiency. Dropped-forged connecting rods, rotating on a forged steel crankshaft, contribute to the inline four's durability, and a balancer shaft delivers improved engine balance and reduced noise, vibration and harshness (NVH).
The responsive inline four is connected to a six-speed manual transmission, for heightened performance in the low gears, along with relaxed - and economical - cruising capability in the higher gears. Customers may opt for an available Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) that delivers both the driving experience and fuel efficiency today's consumers demand, while not compromising the character preferred by driving enthusiasts. That character is enhanced with paddle shifters, optimizing driver control regardless of speed or driving environment. With either transmission choice, the Suzuki Kizashi is engineered to return competitive fuel economy numbers for fuel-conscious consumers.
In addition to this excellent new powertrain, and to even further enhance the Suzuki Kizashi's strong efficiency story, Suzuki is developing an even more fuel efficient hybrid version that will be added to the lineup in the future.
Braking and Handling
In order to successfully enter a field already saturated with countless nondescript transportation appliances, Suzuki breaks away from traditional values normally associated with the mainstream, standing firm on Suzuki's belief in delivering a dynamic and exhilarating driving experience. That driving experience was validated on Germany's Autobahn, Switzerland's Alpine twisties, cobblestone roads of rural England and the legendary Nürburgring.
An exceptionally rigid steel unibody - with reinforced front suspension and multi-link rear suspension constructed with embedded aluminum - allows for crisp, nimble handling with excellent stability, sophisticated ride and reduced chassis vibration. Engineered from conception to be all-wheel-drive capable, the Suzuki Kizashi offers a newly developed advanced all-wheel-drive system with highly advanced controls that evokes and promotes a natural sense of heartfelt driving enthusiasm and safety. Suzuki Kizashi's sophisticated braking system offers standard four-wheel disc brakes and includes suppliers such as Akebono, a world-leader in NVH control and analysis and a leading brake supplier for automotive and high-speed rail applications.
Suzuki Kizashi's thoughtfully crafted exterior design is best described as the seamless melding of European style and Japanese craftsmanship. Tailored for the driving enthusiast, Suzuki Kizashi's bold and aggressive stance is complemented by available 18-inch alloy wheels; contemporary styling - with its lean proportion and minimal front overhang - injects the sophistication appropriate to a performance-oriented sport sedan. As with the Suzuki Kizashi Concept series, the front end of the production Suzuki Kizashi expresses both strength and style, while the vehicle's impeccably engineered body reflects Suzuki Kizashi's underlying strength and distinctive combination of capability and refinement.
At Suzuki Kizashi's rear, the architecture accentuates the 'sport' aspect of Suzuki's sport sedan. The visual dynamic is enhanced with the addition of an integrated dual sport exhaust, communicating - both visually and aurally - the Suzuki Kizashi's performance-imbued spirit.