First Hybrid from Suzuki in 2011

When Suzuki unveiled the all-new 2010 Suzuki Kizashi sedan last month, the company promised a hybrid version in the future. Yesterday, Japan’s Nikkei reported that Suzuki will introduce the Kizashi hybrid to North American markets in 2011. Suzuki officials refused to deny the report.

Suzuki’s hybrid system, using small lithium ion batteries to help boost vehicle efficiency by approximately 20 percent, was co-developed with General Motors.

The Kizashi is Suzuki’s first mid-size sedan—an attempt to gain market share in the North American market. The conventional 2010 Kizashi is expected to come standard with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine, available with a six-speed manual transmission or an optional continuously variable transmission. The hybrid version intended for Japan is likely to be smaller and employ a smaller engine. Details about a hybrid Suzuki Kizashi in the US have not been announced.

According to the Nikkei report, Suzuki’s entry into the hybrid business will intensify competition with Toyota and Honda for green car buyers, and therefore reduce the price tag for hybrids.


  • Anonymous

    The hybrid version intended for Japan is likely to be smaller and employ a smaller engine. Why ? ?
    Somone please tell me why ? ?

  • marco

    dear Anonymous

    In USA the engines are bigger than in japan and Europe.

    It is based on the culture of each region.

    Example:
    The base engine of a Corolla in Europe is gasoline 1400cc, which I believe will be replaced in 2010 by a 1300cc with more power and less consumption of the 1400cc.
    The base version of an Mazda 6 is gasoline 1600 cc.

  • Samie

    “According to the Nikkei report, Suzuki’s entry into the hybrid business will intensify competition with Toyota and Honda for green car buyers, and therefore reduce the price tag for hybrids.”

    How? I don’t see how one could make this assumption w/o knowing the pricing point of this vehicle or how their hybrid technology stacks up to the competition.

    Lets backup to the twenty percent, while that seems a lot it may only create a gain of 4mpgs say at 20mpg. Also are we really talking about the 2-Mode system that to this point has failed GM, Chrysler, & BMW? Without the Li batteries GM was achieving up to 20% improvements in the temp. discontinued two mode system. One last thought wouldn’t more people in North America want a hybrid AWD Outback station wagon before a sedan? Not to be negative but I’m a bit skeptical in Susuki’s hybrid attempts, hope they prove everyone wrong….

  • Less NOx

    The non-hybrid Kizashi is a 2.4 liter 4 cyl so should get way more than 20 mpg (Nissan’s 2.5 liter non-hybrid Altima gets 23 city 32 hwy). So if the hybrid gets 20% better efficiency it’s at least in the 28 to 38 mpg range.

    It probably will put downward price pressure on the Prius and most people will like the styling better…so I hope it comes to fruition. I too would like to see a hybrid wagon or even a small pick-up. I’m getting ready to trader in my ’87 Nissan pick-up and finding that the six cyl trucks don’t get a whole lot better mpg than they did then. All the technology went to more power, not more efficiency.

  • sean t

    Samie,

    There is a thing called “Supply & Demand” rule.

  • Samie

    You are right sean t but what if there is little demand for the supply of Suzuki hybrids? I’m I wrong that this is another 2-mode vehicle? The Hybrid Chevy Malibu tanked why would this car not do the same? Would Suzuki be able to offer this sedan at a lower price from what GM priced the hybrid Malibu for? Because if I’m right GM achieved the same 20% fuel efficiency w/ the old version of the two-mode system w/o Li batteries. Ok at 20mpgs that may be a bit extreme but even at 30mpgs highway this does not add up to much say 28-36mpg. or a net gain of 6+ highway.

    I think if this car actually rivals the Hybrid Fusion we would see Toyota finally upgrade the Hybrid Camry but that remains to be seen. I’m not sure a hybrid sedan would reduce prices for hatchback hybrids but maybe put greater pressure on the traditional hybrid sedan market.

    One last comment the only way the 2mode system will work is to apply technology towards small SUV’s, do I say mini-vans & niche market of AWD wagons in that you achieve 30mpgs or more w/o high costs of technology passed on to consumers. I think people need to remember that if hybrid technology only increases fuel efficiency by a low amount consumers will automatically look at the alternatives equal to pricing or say a traditional ICE vehicle that costs a few thousand less. I ask w/o knowing more about this hybrid how this vehicle will be any different from GM’s failed hybrid attempts? What real difference did GM’s hybrids have on reducing prices in the overall hybrid market or giving Toyota a run for its money w/ good alts to the Prius or Hybrid Camry?

  • qqrockyBeans

    I hope the Kizashu hybrid is available with a manual transmission!!!!
    And a wagon version would be nice, if available with a sunroof as well

    and why can’t we get the small JDM engine?
    AAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!