Everybody loves the Suzuki Jimny and we don’t even get them here in the US. We don’t get any Suzuki cars and trucks anymore. It would seem anecdotally there is a market in the US for these super-mini Jeep-like little bombers. Now from Auto Express comes word that Jeep will be bringing out something like this by 2022.
“The car will be able to be used as a badass Jeep, but it has also been designed to be used every day,” said Marco Pigozzi, Jeep’s European Head of Brand Marketing. The take from this is that since there are no vehicles like this in the US we won’t be getting it. The other is that this comes from the Head of Brand Marketing for Europe. So, it would seem that he wouldn’t be discussing this if it were something that was seeing release in the US. But while we can speculate all day about it, at least it means that Jeep will be launching something like the Jimny.
A brief bit about the Suzuki Jimny
For those not familiar with the Suzuki Jimny, here’s a brief rundown. First, Suzuki pulled out of the US in 2013. It has sold the Jimny since 1970 and rebadged it “Samurai” when it hit our shores in 1985. Things went well for the Samurai until Consumer Reports kept tipping their tester over.
After CR published its test results along with images of the tipping Samurai in 1988 sales dropped off the chart. That was the end of the Samurai/Jimny. In total Suzuki has sold almost three million worldwide over the decades.
Then Suzuki tooled up a slightly larger “Sidekick” which GM adopted as the Geo Tracker. Remember those? And it sued CR for $60 million. It was settled out of court with CR saying it might have been a bit overzealous in its assessment of the Samurai. It didn’t matter much at this point with the Samurai not having been sold here since 1995. Where you can still buy one is in Japan, Australia, and South America.
(This also means that if you want one you can now import non-certified foreign vehicles into the US older than 25 years. They no longer need to comply with FMVSS safety standards. The last big change to the Jimny was in 1998, which got coil springs and a better interior. An all-new Jimny debuted in 2019.)
If Jimny was sold here it would probably go for around $15,000. As diminutive as it is it has a rep for its ability to climb some steep stuff. That when the going gets tough it gets with it.
So what about the Jeep Jimny version?
From what we know this Jeep/Jimny will be a tad longer than 13 feet long. It will slot just below the Jeep Renegade size- and price-wise. So it looks like it will be close to the size of the Jimny. There are further rumors it could be electric from the merger between FCA and PSA. The electric platform underpinning certain Citroen and Peugeot electric vehicles already exists as the “Common Modular Platform.”
Since this platform is able to be modified it can fit under just about anything including a small vehicle like this. If Jeep was to add an electric motor for the rear axle it could create a 4×4 EV. That would get with the program in a big way.
You’ll need to let Jeep know if you would like a baby Jeep as it looks like one is in the works. Just not for the US. Yet.