Optimal straight-line performance on dry Tarmac isn’t going to be of huge concern for Jimny owners more interested in their car’s ability to trundle down farm tracks or haul itself up rock-covered slopes effectively, but it ought to be good enough not to be a barrier to everyday use of the car: and, over shortish-range trips at least, so it proves.
The car’s 95lb ft peak torque isn’t a great deal for any genuine off-roader to depend on, and isn’t particularly accessible either, needing 4000rpm to chime in. A fair amount of welly is therefore required to get off the line in what feels like a smooth and remotely urgent fashion. That said, once you’ve properly acquainted yourself with the car, the Jimny isn’t that taxing to drive around town, although the bagginess of the five-speed manual gearbox’s shift action is a bugbear.
The Jimny managed to record a two-way average 0-60mph time of 11.9sec, which is respectable enough. It accelerated from 30mph to 70mph through the gears – as you might when joining a motorway – in 11.6sec, a second quicker than the entry-level petrol Dacia Duster we road tested earlier this year. The potency of the car’s engine certainly feels a touch limited on the road, and that motor is strained at high revs and on the motorway (not least as a result of the car’s short gearing).
But the rest of the time, the Jimny doesn’t seem to have to struggle too hard to get out of its own way. The previous Jimny’s 1.3-litre four-pot was hardly a beacon of refinement, and it seems Suzuki has done little to improve things with the latest model’s new 1.5-litre engine.