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    13 Reviews
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      09.12.2011 14:50

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      Good value for a 4X4

      We got our Suzuki Grand Vitara(05) early this year, we live on a farm so a good 4X4 was essential to us but we have a large dog so we needed something a bit bigger than a jimny which was our original choice. The Vitara is very spacious inside, it's comfortable, for a 4X4 it's fairly cheap to run(ours averages about 34MPG) and we haven't really had any issues with the car other than the boot door lock rattling which we fixed easily.

      The reason we went for the Suzuki 4X4's is because we have seen them in action, they can go almost anywhere and not get damaged at all...we watched a video on youtube of one driving through an extremely deep puddle and coming out to carry on driving down the track, a major plus for our needs. We also did some research and found them not only less likely to break than some other 4X4's but easier to find parts for and incredible easy to fix. One other thing we have noticed about our suzuki is that it's pretty dirtproof, our previous car was almost constantly filthy and we were having to wash it at least once a week, this car we've had since April and it's been washed 3 times!!!

      Overall a great starter 4X4, very easy to repair, comfy to drive in and a sturdy, hardoworking wee car!

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      04.10.2010 12:35

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      My first ever car! The Suzuki Vitara 1.6 JL, And I love it too bits!

      My first ever car! The Suzuki Vitara 1.6 JL, And I love it too bits! I've had the car for over a year now and it always seems to get me out of bother. In my years learning to drive I drove many mini compacts, the Vauxhall Corsa, Peugeot 206 and The Ford Ka, all of them on a comfort level are better than the Vitara, but in terms of reliability and fun they don't even come close. This thing just keeps going! I'm a student, so not only do I have to minimise the amount I eat due to funds, I also have to watch how much I put in the tank. On many occasions I've been in the red on the fuel gauge for at least 3 or 4 days! I've never had it break down on me, it's a 94 so sometimes it gets the odd groan but that usually just goes away on its own after time. I'm currently in the process of putting larger wheels and a body 2 inch body lift kit on it. Last week I put some wide wheel arches on to beef it out a bit and I also spray painted the canvas roof from white to black. If you're reading this and like me you have wanted a new soft top for ages just to match the colour scheme but just can't get it together to buy a used £160 one from eBay, I strongly recommend buying some matt paint in the colour of your choice, taping up the plastic windows and going nuts! It really does look like a brand new roof! The reason I say use matt is because I used gloss black the first time and when dry it looked like I had put a bin bag on the car, the matt gives that canvas a chance to show a bit more. One of the things I love most about this car is how you can just do things like spray the roof and put things on, pull bits off, it's like a massive toy that I'm moulding to my likes. Defiantly an awesome car and great for a first timer on the road and first timer under the bonnet as the engine is so simple to work with. If you can put up with a bumpy ride, then get one of these, at least once in your life.

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      07.03.2010 19:45
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      A very reliable good all rounder.

      I bought a 1998 Suzuki Vitara about three years ago. My car is the Vitara Estate 2 litre petrol V6 24 valve twin cam petrol. This car I have found most reliable at all times. I wanted a car not too low to ease access and exit and definately 4X4 as I don`t want to get stuck when visiting friends farms, county showgrounds, and winter snow and ice. I think cars are for riding in, not pushing. The ground clearance is much more than a normal car which means I can drive up the kerb in front of my house with no problems when I park on my drive. The ride I find comfortable on potholed roads , as, being an off roader the suspension is well able to take it. The dash although being plastic is as good as most cars and the instruments for me, are quite sufficient. Seats are cloth covered and the rear seats easily fold down 60/40 to accomodate larger loads. Being a V6 it has plenty of power and a good turn of speed when needed. It can be a bit "juicy" if you thrash it through the gears but I find when driven normally it`s not too bad for a 2 litre.
      I`m not a speed fanatic and I find if I drive at about 65mph on motorways which is about 3,000 RPM I can normally better 30MPG.
      Up to the present time I haven`t needed any spares but I did buy a new set of tyres immediately on buying the car. I bought Yokahama Geolanders and up to now they are showing no signs of wear. The normal servicing is done by my regular mechanic in a few hours.
      So to sum up, I am very happy with this car and when eventually I do have to replace it I shall certainly look for another Suzuki.

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        19.05.2009 18:33
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        All round a good driving experiance well impressed

        Hello just a review about my mum's Suzuki Vitara 1.6 JLX i've had the pleasure of driving this vehicle for a period of 3 months when i had no other transport. This is a reliable little car with switchble 4 wheel drive with autohub. This car is just at home off road as it is on road. They exceeded my expectations going through mud and down slopes you would never expect it to make.

        The car tends to handle as well as can be expected and is comfy although the interior is fairly minimal. Only real extra here is the electric windows. The fuel consumption can be as good as 40 miles to the gallon if drove sensibly. Tax the highest band only being a 1.6 also found this helped when it come to insurance as only had to pay £35 for the year to be added to the policy.

        I have found the clutch very light handy off road but makes it a bit finicky when pulling out of junctions. Servicing is cheap enough if your willing to do it yourself unfortunately having the big wheels makes for having to buy expensive tyres.

        Overall a good car really can't grumble to much.

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        17.06.2008 00:17

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        MY JOB-AUDI AFTERSALES!,DAILY I DRIVE...S3, RS4, S8, R8....YOU NAME IT,I'VE ALSO OWNED CARS INC M3 CABRIOLETS.&HAVING A NEW 30K+ AUDI WHICH GETS REPLACED EVERY 2-3MONTHS WE WANTED A SECOND CAR PRACTICAL ENOUGH FOR MY WIFE'S DAILY 16 MILE JOURNEY TO WORK &WAS "INTERESTING", SHE'S HAD-MX5'S,GTI'S,SRI'S...SO DIDN'T KNOW WHAT TO GET UNTIL WE SAW-1998 VITARA-1.6JX-BIG-WHEELS ETC-EBAY@£1,400,WE DIDN'T MESS & HIT"BUYITNOW",WE WENT TO COLLECT & THOUGH WHAT HAVE WE DONE!.NOW WE CAN'T LEAVE IT ALONE, IT'S A BLOODY BRILLIANT TOOL & SUCH A LAUGH, SITS AT 80MPH+ ON MOTORWAY & GETS MORE LOOKS THAN THE RS4!,WOULD NEVER ADVISE AS A MAIN/FAMILY CAR BUT THATS NOT WHAT THEIR ABOUT,YOU'D BE AN IDIOT TO THINK THAT!.IT'S ABOUT HAVING A CHEAP RELIABLE CABRIOLET 4X4/TOY ALL IN ONE SEXY PACKAGE!!, WE TURN INTO FIELDS,DRIVE ROUND THEN BACK ON THE ROAD,WICKED FUN & RECOMMENDED!,IT HONESTLY GIVES ME MORE SMILES/LAUGH'S THAN ANY PERFORMANCE CAR EVER COULD!.FANTASTIC!-BUY ONE!

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        28.10.2001 02:13
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        We run an early 1990 H-reg Suzuki Vitara JLX SE Est and in the 14 months we have had the car it has never failed us once. We paid £3000 for the car with 75,000 miles registered at our local Suzuki dealer and it came fully valeted, with 2 new front tyres (the back were also new, but put on by the last owner) 1 years MOT the car also came with 1 years Suzuki warranty and 1 year Suzuki breakdown cover! Which I am glad to report we have never used once! And all for £3000! Fantastic!. As far as day-to-day living with the car goes it has been super. Plenty of room for 4 people which is all it'll carry due to only 2 seats in the back, the boot could be bigger, but if we need more space the two rear seats both slide and recline individually! And can be folded up against the front two. The interior itself may be a bit brittle looking but has certianly proved very durable and hard wearing. Any marks on the upholstery come right out and the fabric itself has no tears or parts that are wearing thin. Heading away from the road the car has proved a cracker! Mud, water, Ice, Snow, Wet Grass, Ruts in fields the car handles all with remarkable ease and has yet to get us stuck!. On-road performance is reasonable too, with tidy handling for it's age and very good grip to the road and we have found 30 plus mpg easy to achieve too, not bad for an 11 year old car with over 100,000 miles on the clock!. At higher speeds the engine does become thrashy and quite corse, and top-end speed isn't much over 80mph but stick to 65-70mph ish and the car is comfortable enough to cover a fair amount of distance. On a daily basis this car handles a commute to work of 70 miles mainly on A Roads and has done so since we bought it and servicing & fuel costs aside has never cost us a penny!. The servicing costs are reasonable too, at a main Suzuki dealer £90 will get you a minor service and £160 will pay for a major, but with service intervals of only 6000 miles, do
        budget for this. However if you went to a small local independent garage these costs would probably fall. We have had the work carried out by the dealer because of the warranty and the quality of service they provide. For it's age the car still looks very tidy in our opinion, with very little rust and shiny petrol blue metallic paint. Our car was also fitted with the electric pack when new so it has electric mirrors, windows, alloy wheels and central locking all of which still work smoothly and have never failed once. I would say from our experience that these are great cars, and we would most certainly buy another, trouble is we don't want rid of the one we have got! So cannot see us changing it for a long time!. Suppose that's good really..... ********** UPDATES ********** Since I wrote the report I have met the previous owner of the car, said he had known the car from new as it had always been in there family. To sum up what he told me about the car, he said for as long as he could remember the car had never proved a jot of bother and had served them all very well. When I asked why they let the car go, he told me it was purely because of space. They needed more room, and so they bought a Land Rover Discovery instead and weren't all too impressed with it. He said it was nice to see the car looking so good and was pleased to hear it was still running great. So the count of satisfied customers with this car has now risen to 2, and the car is still going strong. ***** Also since I last altered my review my dad has changed his mondeo estate Auto for an R-reg Vitara 2.0V6 Auto. And I think it's Great! The engine is ever so smooth as is the gearbox, far exceeding the mondeo, and let me tell you, IT SHIFTS!. It may only be a 2.0 engine but it goes and emits a deep creamy roar as it lurches for the horizon!, and that's in eco mode not Power mode!. The suspension is also way di
        fferent from our H Reg vitara, much smoother and better controlled. They are still unsure of it, mainly because of the lack of luxuries (the mondeo wasn't short of a few as it was a GihaX) but it has all electrics and air-con and abs which isn't too bad. Another shining Suzuki. :) ***** The Suzuki has been enjoying all this trying weather lately, unlike me!, I say enjoying because it makes everything seem effortless Snow, Frost & Damp mean nothing to this car, it just keeps going strong. Winds are slightly different however, requiring a firmer grasp of the wheel every now and then and a slightly slower drive, but it's more than worth it for all the cars shining qualities.

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          28.02.2001 05:00
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          I came across my Suzuki Vitara JLX by sheer chance. I had my heart set on one and had been looking for ages, but couldn't find one in a colour I liked. We happened to come across one that had just been released by an insurance company, it had previously been stolen and impounded to two years - it was dark grey. I chose the colour of my soft top (yellow), and picked my colours for the side. After having it for two years - I still love it to death. Can't say the same for the rest of my family though. The kids hate it - they say there is no room My hubby is not too keen either - too small for him. I don't see them complaining when the weather is nice though and the top comes down ! It drives like a dream and is so easy to handle - I won't say it is perfect if you are thinking of buying one - it does have a few disadvantages, 1. It is a struggle getting the shopping in the car after a big trip to Sainsbury's, there isn't an awful lot of room. 2. If it is raining really hard, water drips from the top on to the seat giving you a wet bottom ! or head ! 3. If possible, it is best kept in the garage during bad weather, as the instead tends to get a lot of condensation inside. 4. It can be a bit bumpy in the back (think that is why my kids hate it so much) but you don't tend to notice this if you are driving. 5. Can be a little noisy on the Motorway with the soft top. 6. To open the back you have to unzip the rear window. I love it because: It has a great heater, and warms up real quick. It is a real pleasure to drive, especially in the summer. We have just had some snow - and for the first time I have tried the 4-wheel drive - It was brilliant in the snow. (and I hate driving in snow) It is so compact and easy to park. If you can cope with the disadvantages - get one !

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          10.01.2001 15:39
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          I bought a brand new soft-top Vitara 4U in September 1998 having always admired them...a 1.6L engine. Overall it is rubbish and a very bad buy. Let me explain and give you my experience of it after owning it for an unfortunate two years. After driving it down the motorway to Brighton and Crawley a couple of times the mere thought of going on a motorway with it almost gave me a heart attack. If you think this is exaggeration ask for a motorway test-drive and see for yourself...it is scary! The crosswinds push the car so hard your hands will be moulded into the steering wheel by the time you reach your destination. It drinks petrol...it's not comfortable at all - look at the door panels and judge for yourself how cheaply made it is (the lock moulds kept popping off from day one), it's far too pricey for what it is, and the amount you pay in insurance (Group 8/10)should put you off it totally...you'd be better off investing that money in another car! There is no boot space at all...the dog sat in the front. When I say there is no boot space I mean that you could comfortably fit two medium bags of shopping in the back and not much more. If you want to transport anything you have to fold the rear seats down, which is a hassle believe me! People who had been in my Vitara soon changed their minds on 'what a nice car' it is... What more can i say? I sold the damn thing...and the dealerships will be very reluctant to help you sell the car once you've realised how rubbish and uncomfortable it is. Terrible customer care at the Suzuki dealership i went to...they're very nice to you until the money has been given to them. Good luck if you still decide to go ahead with one...be careful not to have an accident in it cos the doors are very flimpsy - if I had kids i would never let them get in it. I would have sold the car straight away!

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            20.11.2000 18:02
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            Im the proud owner of a Black Suzuki Vitara JLX. It is my Second Vitara that I have owned after having a Blue JX before this one. I traded my old one in because it lacked the following features: The REALLY wide Wheel arches The REALLY wide Wheels Power Steering Leather interior. They were both Soft tops though. Now, I feel, I can comment on the cars seen as I have quite a bit of experience with them. Build Quality. They look very nice tidy cars on the outside but dont let that fool you. They are quite rattly inside. Not as bad as the SJ413 though. Every bump and hump causes a rattle somewhere. Ride comfort. The power steering on my new jeep make the ride a lot easier from a driving perspective but dont buy one if you intend on doing lots of miles in it on long journeys. They are not built for it. Body Styling. There are a few extra to bolt on if you desire. My previous Jeep (the JX) did not have side steps or a bull bar on the front. These are additions you can have installed which I did. My JLX comes with these as standard. Looks. They are very pleasant on the eye despite being called "hairdressers cars". When the roof is down in the summer and the stereo is pumping, everyone looks. Performance. Dont buy one if you are looking for Breakneck speed. It is more of a car to be seen in than to fly past in. The top speed is about 95 mph so at least you will find it hard to get caught speeding in. I love my Vitara and would recommend one to anyone. As long as you are looking for a car to be seen in and not to be driven.

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            28.08.2000 04:48

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            I bought a new Vitara four years ago and, overall, have been more than pleased with it. However,like all cars, it has advantages and disadvantages. I had two reasons for choosing the Vitara in the first place. One was that I do a lot of driving on rough terrain and I thought that the four wheel drive would be useful - in the event, I've never used it yet. The second was that all the older Vitaras that I saw on the road appeared to be in good condition and I wanted a car that would last. The main advantages have been visibility - being that much higher than in a normal car is ideal for driving round country lanes as you can often see oncoming traffic by looking over hedges. However this does have a downside in that the car tends to drift in high winds. Personally, I lke the hard suspension, although my husband hates it, so I suppose that is a matter of taste. I find it extremely easy to drive,with light yet positive steering and a small turning circle.It's a dream to park. I also appreciate the electric windows, immobiliser and individual map reading lights. Disadvantages - well the biggest one is fuel economy. I get around 29 mpg, although the majority of my motoring is short journeys of less than 10 miles. The other disadvantage is the lack of boot space. There is a choice between two and four seats and, if the four seat option is selected,then the boot space is pathetic. However, I only use the two seat option so am not personally affected. There have been one or two little niggles since having the car. For a start, the plastic door handle is too flimsy for the heavy rear door and keeps breaking.On that subject, it would be nice if the interior light was operated when opening the rear door.Also, a light in the glove box would be useful. The car had it's first MOT last year and I was surprised to find that it is not at present subject to emission tests. I have also been surprised by the fact that many insurance companies rate the Vitara
            - it's considered a popular vehicle with "boy racers" and you need to shop around to get the best deal. All cars have their good or bad points. I wouldn't reccommend the Vitara to a family, probably not even to someone who does very high mileage.However, as a run about for a single person or a couple, the Vitara is hard to beat.

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            24.08.2000 04:42
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            I bought my L Reg Suzuki Vitara about 5 years ago and although the car is a head-turner I have lots of problems with the car and feel that the overall build quality is very poor. My model is a 2 Door, Soft-Top with full body kit. I was the second owner, the previous owner only had it for about 6 months so I paid quite a high price. The car cost me £11,999, which, I'll think you'll agree is quite a lot for a second hand car. Two days after I bought the car the drivers door handle came off (which was repaired free but the garage where I purchased the car) and since then I have had the interior light repaired twice, the interior clock doesnt work any more the electric window on the drivers side hasnt worked for about 6 months and the passengers side window went wrong a couple of weeks ago. The stiching on the soft top has come away...I could go on all day. I know that a lot of this can be put down to the age of the car but I never had this many problems with my last car which I had for 5 years (an Escort Encore). Summing up I would say that I could have been unlucky and maybe I picked up a badly treated car, If you want a head turner this is the car for you but maybe you should expect a few problems as well, and also expect to pay a lot for tyres if you have got the wide alloys/body kit. It cost me nearly £500 to have four tyres fitted and balanced.

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              07.08.2000 03:50
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              My wife bought on of these cars six months ago after taking a liking to my Grand Vitara , it was quite a change from the little chinquecento she had before. We went for the soft top one which is fairly impractical but a really good pose if you like that kind of thing. These cars are getting on now and they show their age, the 1600cc engine is pleasant enough but tends to run out of steam too quickly but the light clutch compensates, any way if you want to drive fast then you have missed the point, when in this poseurs machine you want to be seen. The ride is harsh and bouncy the gear lever is positive but has a throw about a foot accross the level of equipment is basic, the access into the rear is diabolical, and if you need a boot forget it there isn't one just a four inch wide space enough to carry a french loaf back from Sainsburys. There is no where to store your bits and pieces(sun glasses and other posing kit) the hubs are not automatic and you cannot select 4WD on the move, the noise level is VERY HIGH when the top is up, the visibility is poor due to the small windows and the roll bar. But having said all that when the sun is shining and the roof is off or even when its not and you are just driving you tend to find yourself grinning, even smiling to yourself because for all its faults it grows on you. This may sound mad but once you have one you will understand, personalising is easy, since new, ours has aquired bull bar, rear wheel cover , side steps, wind deflectors etc etc Oh and the hairdressers thing.... well it must be partly true my daughter is in her final year and she loves it even with the L plates on.

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                30.07.2000 19:58

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                I think the Suzuki Vitara JX Sport is a fun car to drive. I currently own a soft top one with a body kit and larger wheels compared to the standard Vitara. Not only is it generally a fun car to be driving about in your bound to get noticed - so if your paranoid then I wouldn't recommend it. I purchased the car from new and generally I haven't been let down by it. It did have one problem though which took it off the road for nearly two weeks. All the fuses kept on blowing on it and it said there was an engine fault. After two weeks it turned out to be a loose wire for a rear windscreen wiper. The engine fault was pointed to faulty sensors and a bad speedo. This happened at about 38k miles - so it has been used a lot. Apart from that it never broke down on me - touch wood it never will. The ride is bouncy and I wouldn't recommend it for long journeys although I use mine every day on motorways etc. It is also quite noisey due to the soft top - which is also manual, my only gripe. It is really a posers car and great fun to be in, oh yeah and forget about having a boot!

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