The new 2019 Suzuki Jimny is being sold with a huge markup in overseas markets - what's going on?
Tragically, we unlucky few in North America will never know the joy of owning a Suzuki Jimny as the Japanese car and motorcycle maker pulled up shop way back in 2014. Thus, if we ever wanted to own one we’d have to import it from across the ocean, making the cheap off-roader a very expensive alternative to a Jeep Wrangler.
But it turns out that even if you live in a place where Suzuki still has dealerships you’ll still have to pay an enormous sum for the little Jimny.
Spotted on Auto Trader (via Motoring Research) is this green-painted Jimny on sale in the UK for £24,950. The regular MSRP in Britain for a base-model manual Jimny is £15,499, and even a top-trim version with an automatic transmission tops out at around £18,999.
So what gives? Well, according to the listing there’s a 1-year waiting list to own a Jimny in Britain. Prices are all about supply and demand, and Suzuki vastly underestimated demand for their redesigned off-roader in the British Isles. That sort of markup is usually reserved for important super-luxury vehicles, like Lamborghinis or McLarens. And yet people love the Jimny so much they’re willing to pay 25% above retail cost just to own one now instead of a year from now.
At least it’s the highest level trim, with heated seats, lane keeping sensors, climate control, and 15-inch alloy wheels. Under the hood is a 1.5-L inline 4-cylinder engine with 100.5 horses and 102 lb-ft of torque. Power is routed to all four wheels via an automatic 4-speed transmission with a top speed of 87 mph.
To be honest, the Jimny struggles on the highway where its boxy shape and underwhelming engine make it struggle to keep up. But the Jimny isn’t meant for the streets--it’s meant to be wild and free in the open pastures, using its off-road suspension and four-wheel-drive to conquer terrain that would stymie a Land Rover or a G-Wagen.
It’s just too bad you can’t get one here.