The most rugged SUVs on the market also tend to be some of the longest-running – but they’re dropping like flies, replaced one after another by all-new models. Next up will be the Suzuki Jimny, as we’ve seen through successive rounds of spy shots and leaked images. And now we have a launch date – or at least a purported one, at any rate.
Among the tweets and rumors rounding the webosphere today is news that Suzuki will reveal the new Jimny in Japan on July 5 – less than a month from now. But considering all we’ve seen and read about the new baby ‘ute up to this point, we suspect that’ll do little more than fill in the blanks.Suzuki’s been building Jimnies for nearly 50 years now. The current model has been on the market for 20 years (since ’98), and has earned a following for the go-anywhere capability it’s built into such a tiny form. But like the Land Rover Defender, Jeep Wrangler, and Mercedes G-Class, the time for its replacement has come.When Suzuki finally lifts the veil off the new mini-SUV, we’re expecting it to stick to its compact form so that it can still comply with Japan’s rigorous Kei car regulations. That will also necessitate an engine no larger than 660 cc for the Japanese Domestic Market, though export markets will likely get larger engines hovering around the one-liter mark.As we’ve seen time and time again, the new Jimny will also retain the model line’s signature boxy styling, albeit updated and modernized for the next generation. And though its driving dynamics will almost certainly improve, don’t expect it to go soft: there’s plenty of crossovers out there built for the road. The Jimny ought to stick to its rough-and-tumble character to keep it utile off the road.