Suzuki Grand Vitara is bang for the buck!

At RM140K-ish is a cheapest mid-size SUV in the market better than X-Trail, CRV, Escape etc. What you are getting is a CBU all the way from Japan with features to match at CKD price, wots not to like? Totally cool! However, that 2.0L engine is not variable valve and the drive is on permanent 4WD so that spells heavy fuel consumption. With all that crude oil crisis, you can do without the extra expenses. Further, those tyres costs you around RM400 per piece, that heavy drive is gonna burn tyres faster than you can say wasabi.

The test drive I took did not impressive me compare to the Suzuki Swift. The Vitara power transfer on the low gears are slow and then a sudden surge of power on the backend, kinda reminds me of the Gen2 engine respond. You have to go a little easy on the gas paddle. The overall ride is stiff like a 4x4 should but this is SUV, a urban vehicle, that tough ride will be uncomfortable for a city SUV, the CRV is ace in this department. If you can live with those drawbacks and would like an alternative SUV right now, the Grand Vitara is for you.

(Images from Top Gear)