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At the 2020 Auto Expo in Delhi, the main headline grabber at the Maruti Suzuki pavilion was the Jimny SUV. Now, nearly two years after that attention grabbing debut, we are finally hearing concrete rumblings about the Jimny debut into the Indian market thanks to a new report.
According to a new article by ET Auto, Maruti Suzuki is set to launch the Jimny offroader by the middle of 2023 as it looks to take the fight to the Mahindra Thar to capture the hearts and wallets of a fast growing segment.
Maruti Suzuki has been producing a three-door version of the Jimny in India since last year for export to international markets but it is not just this model that will be coming to India claims the report. ET Auto reports that Maruti will also launch the Jimny in India as a 5-door version with 5 and 7 seat options.
It is this 5 door version of the Jimny that the publication claims is what Maruti Suzuki is pinning its hopes to outshine the Thar in the Indian market. Since the arrival of the new-gen Thar in 2020, Mahindra has seen seen quite the uptick in numbers for the SUV. This is despite the fact that Mahindra only offers the Thar in a 3 door guise, a body shape that hasn't really gained much traction in the Indian market.
Maruti Suzuki hopes to upstage the Thar by offering the Jimny as a more traditional 5 door SUV as it looks to target the SUV market currently dominated by its rivals. The carmaker had recently admitted that it was looking at expanding its SUV lineup in the Indian market as it looked to bounce back after the pandemic.
ET Auto claims that production of the Jimny was originally expected to start in February 2023 but has been pushed back a month or two due to supply constraints. A pre-pilot program for the Jimny is expected to start by the end of June.
ET Auto claims that the 5 seater version of the Jimny is expected to be a sub 4-metre SUV which it claims will help Maruti undercut the Thar in terms of the price tag.
The publication also claims that the new Jimny will draw power from a 1.5-litre petrol powerplant with 101bhp and 130Nm of torque on tap. The new Jimny SUV will feature a 5-speed gearbox with a low range transfer case and Suzuki's Allgrip Pro 4 all-wheel drive system. The Jimny sports a ladder frame chassis and 3-link rigid axle suspension setup.
The Jimny isn't the only SUV that Maruti Suzuki is currently working on. The second-gen Vitara Brezza is just around the corner and Maruti Suzuki's collaboration with Toyota will soon result in the carmaker's rival foe the Hyundai Creta arriving on Indian roads. Codenamed YFG, the SUV will sport both petrol and hybrid powerplants as Maruti Suzuki looks to finally crack the SUV code.
Thoughts On The Maruti Suzuki Jimny
The Maruti Suzuki Jimny has been a much talked about SUV. Various rumours have sprung about before about what many enthusiasts in India consider to be the spiritual successor to the Gypsy. This latest report only adds fuel to the fire which we hope to finally see ignite properly in 2023.