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Inner Western Courier Thursday Not Used Anymore : September 10 2008
34 INNER-WEST WEEKLY, Thursday, September 11, 2008 MB Done and dusted PETER BARNWELL S SUZUKI has timed the appear- ance of an upgraded Grand Vitara to perfection -- right when sales of compact Sports Utility Vehicles are booming. Mostly ''family'' new vehicle buyers are plumping for a com- pact SUV over a large sedan and Suzuki's revamped Grand Vitara makes their decision that much more difficult. But it's a good problem to have and in the new Grand Vitara range there is plenty of variety. Basically what you are looking at is three and five-door models with a choice of 2.4-litre four cylinder and 3.2-litre V6 petrol engines and a 1.9-litre turbo diesel four. The V6 is only fitted to five-door variants which also h ave a five-speed automatic. The 2.4 four makes do with a five- speed manual or optional four- speed auto and the diesel is a five- speed manual. Two grades of Grand Vitara are offered: base and Prestige with the latter scoring a swag of luxury goodies. Options are of- fered across the range. The big news is about the larger capacity engines with more power and torque as well as reduced fuel consumption. Suzuki improved refinement in the new model through extensive engine work, balance shafts and sound reducing design. The 2.4 is good for 122kW/ 225Nm while the 3.2-V6 cranks out 165kW/284Nm. The eight-valve, Renault- sourced, 95kW diesel remains unchanged and is blessed with the strongest torque (300Nm) as well as the best fuel economy in the range Both petrol engines feature variable valve timing (both sides on V6) for optimised efficiency with the four also scoring a rotary valve, variable induction system. The four is capable of 8.9-litres/ 100km while the V6 is good for 10.5. On the outside, new Grand Vitara looks a lot like its prede- cessor with minor tweaks around the headlights and grille at the front and the tail lights at the rear. Xenon headlights make an appearance and Suzuki has stuck with a tailgate-mounted spare for a real 4x4 look and easy spare wheel access. Inside, styling has been freshened with new instruments, colours and some switchgear changes to improve function. Wheel-mounted audio controls are used and there's a centre- mounted speaker for the audio system. An iPod jack is optional. Stability control and multiple airbags are standard across the range, starting with the $24,990 three-door 2.4 manual. Prices rise to the V6 Prestige at $39,990. Larger wheels have been adopted across the range up to optional 18-inch alloys on the Prestige model. Hill descent control is available as is hill start assist. High-end models also gain goodies like auto-on headlights and alloy wheels. Suzuki launched the new Grand Vitara in Central Aust- ralia last week over a demanding on/off-road course covering hun- dreds of kilometres. As a genuine 4x4, the Grand Vitara has an edge on its direct competition, most of which would struggle, or fail, in these con- ditions. Grand Vitara sailed on through without so much as a hiccup on or off road. The selectable 4WD system of- fers four-wheel drive High, four- wheel drive high Lock and four- wheel drive Low range -- all selectable through a dial on the dash. Low range can only be selected or deactivated when the vehicle is stopped. The cars stood up well to pretty much anything that was thrown at them including heavily rutted main gravel roads, stoney dry river beds, bull dust and deep sand. Efforts to quell noise and vi- bration seem successful because the vehicle is quiet and smooth on everything except washboard corrugations. On sealed roads Grand Vitara has improved dramatically both in terms of performance and refinement. Whistling along the NT roads at high speeds was achieved in near silence, a little more noise from the car with low- profile 18-inch wheels. Make a purchase at any participating business for the chance to WIN instant prizes! Go to the TrueLocal section of this paper to find a list of participating businesses in your area and for your chance to enter the major prize draws. Promotion commences on 17/08/08 and closes 12/10/08. Authorised under NSW Permit No. LTPS/08/07268 Looking for a rewarding career when you leave school? NO UAI REQUIRED OPEN DAY SATURDAY 20 SEPTEMBER Information seminars through the day BUSINESS AND CHILD CARE TRAINING Bedford College 54 Parramatta Road, Glebe 2037 (Opposite Sydney University) Telephone: (02) 8572 3260 www.bedford.edu.au 2249168i iww wk11
September 3 2008
September 17 2008