All of us have a wishlist of cars we would want to own and drive if they were sold in our country. In recent years, I’ve wished for small sportscars, like the Toyota GT86, to affordable hot hatches,
like the Swift Sport, but if there’s one car I really wish for as a runabout, it’s the Suzuki Jimny.
I saw the new Jimny for the first time last year on a trip to Dubai and instantly fell in love with it. Unlike other cars that have grown over the years, the new Jimny retains its compact dimensions, which, at just 3,645mm in length (10mm less than a WagonR), is ideal for our congested roads. This pocket-sized off-roader, with its ample ground clearance and chunky tyres, would be ideal to cruise over potholes and wade through water during the Mumbai monsoons.
Being a Suzuki and going by the reliability record of its predecessor, Maruti’s Gypsy, the Jimny should be extremely reliable.
Another draw towards the Jimny would be its styling. I particularly like its boxy, yet quirky and cute looks, which I’m sure would make it a head-turner, especially in Kinetic Yellow or Brisk Blue Metallic. But what attracts me the most towards it is that it is still an old-school off-roader with relatively simple mechanicals.
If you were to compare the price of the Jimny in international markets to other Suzuki cars, it can be considered to be relatively pricey. But even if the Jimny was priced at Rs 15 lakh in India, I can’t think of any other car with so much character and appeal.
You could probably buy a pre-owned Cooper S or Polo GTI for the same amount of money, and you may argue that they offer a lot more performance, but the Jimny would hold its own off-road and it has its own charm. It would probably grab a fair share of eyeballs too, more than the Polo I’m pretty sure.
Furthermore being an off-roader, there is so much you can do to customise it, from wheel rims to winches and auxiliary lamps to roof carriers. What recently caught my attention on the internet were some images of Mercedes-Benz G-class replica bumpers and grille fitted on to the Jimny.
When I talk about the car with fellow enthusiasts, including supercar and classic car owners, most get excited at the prospect of getting one as a daily driver.
I’m sure a large number of off-road enthusiasts would be keen on getting a Jimny, and Gypsy loyalists would look forward to it too.
Overall, I’m sure there is a considerable niche of customers for cars like the Jimny in India, and not just within the off-road enthusiast circles but also extending to the larger enthusiast community.
Come on Maruti, please bring us the new Jimny! Until then, I am going to have to simply make do with my Jimny scale model on my desk.