The Jimny was taken off sale due to emission issues back in 2020
Extended, five-door Jimny prototype could be first indication of off-roader’s electrified comeback
The Suzuki Jimny could make a return to the UK in passenger-car form with five doors and an electrified powertrain.
The compact 4×4 was pulled from sales in Europe in 2020, due to the adverse effect it was having on Suzuki’s fleet-average CO2 emissions, although it remained on sale in other markets.
It was brought back a year later in limited-run, two-seat commercial form, due to the less stringent emission rules governing trade vehicles.
Now though, the Jimny has been spotted testing in Europe once again, with a substantially longer wheelbase, hinting at a new five-door bodyshell.
It was reportedly seen running with its engine off, suggesting some sort of hybrid powertrain is under the bonnet.
Suzuki no longer offers non-electrified engines in Europe, so a hybrid powertrain could be the Jimny’s ticket back to dealerships in the region.
It’s expected that a Jimny hybrid would use a powertrain similar to that offered in the Suzuki Vitara. Options include a 127bhp 1.4-litre turbo petrol mild hybrid and a 113bhp 1.5-litre full hybrid.
Before it was taken off sale, the Jimny was powered by a 100bhp naturally aspirated 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine, which officially emitted 154g/km of CO2 while getting 35.8mpg.
Aside from being made more compliant with a cleaner powertrain, the Jimny could also be made more competitive in adopting a pair or rear doors.
The added practicality would strengthen its use case in light of larger rivals like the Dacia Duster and even more lifestyle-oriented crossovers, such as the Ford Fiesta Active and Toyota Yaris Cross.
It’s expected to have a wheelbase 300mm longer than the standard 2550mm, while width and height are expected to be unchanged.
The passenger Jimny cost from £15,879 at launch in 2019 and the commercial variant currently costs £19,999 (after VAT), so any larger and electrified variant is expected to nudge past the £20,000 barrier.