It feels like ages ago we first clapped eyes on a lengthened Suzuki Jimny prototype, but at last, the production version is here. It was worth the wait, as the Jimny five-door is every bit as lovely as we dared to hope, looking even more like a mini Mercedes G-Class/G-Wagen than the three-door car.
To accommodate the extra set of doors, Suzuki stretched the Jimny’s wheelbase by 340mm. It’s still far from a large thing, with the total length remaining comfortably under four metres. At the same time, though, there’s now a much bigger cabin seating five (the three-door passenger Jimny only accommodates four) and some luggage - the boot capacity is 208 litres, up from a laughable 85. Folding the rear bench down opens up 322 litres of space.
It’s powered by the same naturally aspirated 1.5-litre inline-four as the three-door car, producing a modest 103bhp and 106lb ft of torque and available hooked up to either a five-speed manual gearbox or a four-speed manual. And so, the five-door Jimny will be even slower and less efficient that its smaller sibling. But let’s gloss over that.
Off road, it’ll be only slightly less capable than the three-door model, with approach, breakover and departure angles of 36, 24 and 50 degrees respectively. The three-door Jimny, for comparison, manages 36, 24 and 50 degrees. The ground clearance of both cars is the same at 210mm, while a selectable four-wheel drive system is shared across the two.
It’s reasonably well equipped, coming with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and a rear parking camera working out of a nine-inch touchscreen, plus six airbags. And yes, you can have it on 15-inch steel wheels, or alloys of the same size, if you’re happy to make the wrong decision.
You want one, don’t you? We certainly do. The only problem is, in much of the world, that won’t be possible. It’ll be sold in India (where the car is also built), Africa, Latin America and eventually Australia, but not where the majority of you lot live - Europe and the USA.
Americans sadly haven’t been able to buy any version of the current car in an official capacity. In the UK meanwhile, the only way of getting a three-door Jimny is by opting for the two-seater commercial version, which is judged by less stringent van emissions regulations. As far as we know, there are no plans to make a commercial version of the bigger Jimny for the British market.