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Found 25 results

  1. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com November 9, 2012 In 2004, if you wanted a subcompact vehicle with the ability to go off the beaten path, you would have to leave the U.S. and head to Europe to pick up a Fiat Panda 4x4. Then in 2006, Suzuki unveiled the SX4 crossover which came with the choice of front-wheel or all-wheel drive. It was billed as the least expensive vehicle equipped with AWD in the U.S. with a base price of $14,999. Since its introduction, the SX4 hasn’t changed much and has drifted into obscurity. Even with Suzuki adding a FWD SX4 sportback and sedan to the lineup, there aren’t that many SX4s on the road. Now for the 2013 model year, Suzuki has made some small changes inside and out, and raised the base price to $16,999. The SX4’s exterior looks to be a modern interpretation of the first-generation Geo Metro 5-Door hatchback. Both have low and angular fronts before transitioning to tall, rounded rooflines and sloping rear ends. This shape allows Suzuki to put in a larger area of glass which makes for better visibility and makes the interior feel larger. Other design cues to take note is a revised front end with a larger grille, sixteen-inch alloy wheels, black body cladding, rear bumper skidplate, and a new Plasma Yellow Metallic paint color. The SX4’s interior is a textbook example of a no-nonsense environment. You won’t find any contrasting interior pieces or many luxuries. There are hard plastics used on the dash and door panels, but they look and feel solid. Build quality is high with no panel gaps or rattling noises. Front seat passengers get cloth-covered seats that are very comfortable and feature a decent amount of adjustments. On this particular SX4, the front seats were also heated. Backseat passengers will appreciate the large amount of headroom thanks to the high roofline. What they won’t appreciate is the lack of legroom, especially to those who are tall. This particular SX4 was equipped with a new 6.1-inch touchscreen system which provides navigation, traffic, AM/FM radio, CD, USB, SD Card, Bluetooth, and Pandora streaming. The system is very intuitive and feels responsive. The navigation data and maps for the system are provided by Garmin. While the graphics look like something you would find in the mid-2000’s, the system provided good data and was able to get me where I needed to go. The Pandora streaming works by plugging your smartphone via USB to play your stations. I found the system wouldn’t play the station I had listened to last on the phone. I found that if I switched to another station and then changing back, the station would begin playing. I’m not sure if this if a problem with the system, Pandora, my phone (iPhone 4S), or a combination of the pieces. Next: Power, AWD, Driving, and Verdict Powering the SX4 Crossover is a 2.0L DOHC inline-four producing 148 HP and 140 lb-ft of torque. The power is sent through a CVT and down to either the front-wheels or to all four-wheels via Suzuki’s i-AWD system. The 2.0L engine is satisfactory in this application. Most times, you’ll find the engine provides enough power to get you around town with ease. There are times though where you do wish the car had a bit more torque when merging onto an expressway, though the CVT does an excellent job of keeping you right in the engine’s power band. Much like the Kizashi that I had in for review back in August, the SX4 Crossover has a switch to turn the AWD system on and off. There are three different settings for the AWD system, Off: Leaves the AWD system off, power is sent to front-wheels Auto: AWD system kicks on when the system detects a loss of traction Lock: AWD system is always on I had the opportunity to test the SX4's AWD system through some of the terrible storms that Hurricane Sandy pushed into my area, and I'm happy to say the SX4 and I pulled through. Fuel economy was a huge disappointment for such a small vehicle. The EPA rates the 2013 SX4 Crossover at 23 City/29 Highway/25 Combined. My week’s average was around 24 MPG on mostly suburban and rural roads. On the freeway, I got around 27.1 MPG. The SX4 crossover’s suspension is made up of Macpherson struts up front and a torsion-beam setup in the back. For steering, Suzuki employs a hydraulic power-assisted rack and pinion system. This combination makes the SX4 a good partner when you have the urge to take a spirited drive as it keeps the vehicle stable and the steering provides enough feel and weight. But what about the daily grind? How does the SX4 crossover fare? Very well. The suspension provides enough damping to minimize bumps and imperfections on the road. Also, there isn’t that much wind noise entering the cabin. There is a good amount of road noise though. Finishing up my time with the Suzuki SX4, I realized there are many similarities to it and the Kizashi I had in for review back in August. Both vehicles make excellent cases for themselves, but have a few nagging problems. In the SX4’s case, the positives are a unique AWD system, fun and comfortable handling, decent CVT, and simplistic interior design. Problem areas are the poor fuel economy, rearseat legroom, and Suzuki itself. Which is pretty sad since the Suzuki SX4 crossover deserves more attention than its been getting. Now with the recent news of American Suzuki Motor Corporation filling for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and closing down its automotive branch, it brings attention the SX4 has been longing for. The SX4 is no-nonsense hatchback crossover that has AWD traction and a low price-tag. Combine it with Suzuki's promise to honor warranties on vehicles and you have one of the best values on road. If this interests you, you should head out shortly since it might not be long before the SX4 crossover is gone forever. Cheers: AWD System Price No-nonsense interior Handling during spirited and normal driving CVT Suzuki honoring warrenties Jeers: Fuel Economy with the 2.0L Rear Legroom Suzuki saying farewell to the American car market Disclaimer: Suzuki provided the vehicle, insurance, and one tank of gasoline. Year - 2013 Make – Suzuki Model – SX4 Crossover Trim – AWD Tech Value Package (Nav) Engine – 2.0L DOHC 16-Valve Inline-Four Driveline – All-Wheel Drive, CVT Horsepower @ RPM – 148 HP (@ 6,000 RPM) Torque @ RPM – 140 lb-ft (@ 4,000 RPM) Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 23/29/25 Curb Weight – 2,954 lbs Location of Manufacture – Sagara, Japan Base Price - $20,449.00 As Tested Price - $20,704.00* (Doesn’t include Destination Charge) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Click here to view the article
  2. 2013 Suzuki SX4 Crossover

    William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com November 9, 2012 In 2004, if you wanted a subcompact vehicle with the ability to go off the beaten path, you would have to leave the U.S. and head to Europe to pick up a Fiat Panda 4x4. Then in 2006, Suzuki unveiled the SX4 crossover which came with the choice of front-wheel or all-wheel drive. It was billed as the least expensive vehicle equipped with AWD in the U.S. with a base price of $14,999. Since its introduction, the SX4 hasn’t changed much and has drifted into obscurity. Even with Suzuki adding a FWD SX4 sportback and sedan to the lineup, there aren’t that many SX4s on the road. Now for the 2013 model year, Suzuki has made some small changes inside and out, and raised the base price to $16,999. The SX4’s exterior looks to be a modern interpretation of the first-generation Geo Metro 5-Door hatchback. Both have low and angular fronts before transitioning to tall, rounded rooflines and sloping rear ends. This shape allows Suzuki to put in a larger area of glass which makes for better visibility and makes the interior feel larger. Other design cues to take note is a revised front end with a larger grille, sixteen-inch alloy wheels, black body cladding, rear bumper skidplate, and a new Plasma Yellow Metallic paint color. The SX4’s interior is a textbook example of a no-nonsense environment. You won’t find any contrasting interior pieces or many luxuries. There are hard plastics used on the dash and door panels, but they look and feel solid. Build quality is high with no panel gaps or rattling noises. Front seat passengers get cloth-covered seats that are very comfortable and feature a decent amount of adjustments. On this particular SX4, the front seats were also heated. Backseat passengers will appreciate the large amount of headroom thanks to the high roofline. What they won’t appreciate is the lack of legroom, especially to those who are tall. This particular SX4 was equipped with a new 6.1-inch touchscreen system which provides navigation, traffic, AM/FM radio, CD, USB, SD Card, Bluetooth, and Pandora streaming. The system is very intuitive and feels responsive. The navigation data and maps for the system are provided by Garmin. While the graphics look like something you would find in the mid-2000’s, the system provided good data and was able to get me where I needed to go. The Pandora streaming works by plugging your smartphone via USB to play your stations. I found the system wouldn’t play the station I had listened to last on the phone. I found that if I switched to another station and then changing back, the station would begin playing. I’m not sure if this if a problem with the system, Pandora, my phone (iPhone 4S), or a combination of the pieces. Next: Power, AWD, Driving, and Verdict Powering the SX4 Crossover is a 2.0L DOHC inline-four producing 148 HP and 140 lb-ft of torque. The power is sent through a CVT and down to either the front-wheels or to all four-wheels via Suzuki’s i-AWD system. The 2.0L engine is satisfactory in this application. Most times, you’ll find the engine provides enough power to get you around town with ease. There are times though where you do wish the car had a bit more torque when merging onto an expressway, though the CVT does an excellent job of keeping you right in the engine’s power band. Much like the Kizashi that I had in for review back in August, the SX4 Crossover has a switch to turn the AWD system on and off. There are three different settings for the AWD system, Off: Leaves the AWD system off, power is sent to front-wheels Auto: AWD system kicks on when the system detects a loss of traction Lock: AWD system is always on I had the opportunity to test the SX4's AWD system through some of the terrible storms that Hurricane Sandy pushed into my area, and I'm happy to say the SX4 and I pulled through. Fuel economy was a huge disappointment for such a small vehicle. The EPA rates the 2013 SX4 Crossover at 23 City/29 Highway/25 Combined. My week’s average was around 24 MPG on mostly suburban and rural roads. On the freeway, I got around 27.1 MPG. The SX4 crossover’s suspension is made up of Macpherson struts up front and a torsion-beam setup in the back. For steering, Suzuki employs a hydraulic power-assisted rack and pinion system. This combination makes the SX4 a good partner when you have the urge to take a spirited drive as it keeps the vehicle stable and the steering provides enough feel and weight. But what about the daily grind? How does the SX4 crossover fare? Very well. The suspension provides enough damping to minimize bumps and imperfections on the road. Also, there isn’t that much wind noise entering the cabin. There is a good amount of road noise though. Finishing up my time with the Suzuki SX4, I realized there are many similarities to it and the Kizashi I had in for review back in August. Both vehicles make excellent cases for themselves, but have a few nagging problems. In the SX4’s case, the positives are a unique AWD system, fun and comfortable handling, decent CVT, and simplistic interior design. Problem areas are the poor fuel economy, rearseat legroom, and Suzuki itself. Which is pretty sad since the Suzuki SX4 crossover deserves more attention than its been getting. Now with the recent news of American Suzuki Motor Corporation filling for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and closing down its automotive branch, it brings attention the SX4 has been longing for. The SX4 is no-nonsense hatchback crossover that has AWD traction and a low price-tag. Combine it with Suzuki's promise to honor warranties on vehicles and you have one of the best values on road. If this interests you, you should head out shortly since it might not be long before the SX4 crossover is gone forever. Cheers: AWD System Price No-nonsense interior Handling during spirited and normal driving CVT Suzuki honoring warrenties Jeers: Fuel Economy with the 2.0L Rear Legroom Suzuki saying farewell to the American car market Disclaimer: Suzuki provided the vehicle, insurance, and one tank of gasoline. Year - 2013 Make – Suzuki Model – SX4 Crossover Trim – AWD Tech Value Package (Nav) Engine – 2.0L DOHC 16-Valve Inline-Four Driveline – All-Wheel Drive, CVT Horsepower @ RPM – 148 HP (@ 6,000 RPM) Torque @ RPM – 140 lb-ft (@ 4,000 RPM) Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 23/29/25 Curb Weight – 2,954 lbs Location of Manufacture – Sagara, Japan Base Price - $20,449.00 As Tested Price - $20,704.00* (Doesn’t include Destination Charge) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  3. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com December 7, 2013 The Suzuki Kizashi, a model that was loved by many automotive writers and journalists (your's truly included), but never made a mark on consumers, will not get a second chance. According to Drive.com.au, Suzuki is unlikely to develop a replacement model. “That’s my headache. Kizashi was a very unlucky car,” said Suzuki’s Australian managing director Masaaki Kato. “We had so many arguments about the question: how to handle Kizashi. At that time, frankly speaking, we should not have introduced the car into the market in 2009. But you see, we made a big investment to develop this car… after heavy and hard discussion, we decided to introduce this Kizashi.” Aside from the poor timing of the launch, the Kizashi also had problems with poor brand recognition, and being in-between a compact and midsize sedan. Kato also revealed that Suzuki was working on turbocharged and V6 versions, along with a wagon before the company scrapped them due to the poor sales. Source: Drive.com.au William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Click here to view the article
  4. Suzuki: Kizashi A "Headache"

    William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com December 7, 2013 The Suzuki Kizashi, a model that was loved by many automotive writers and journalists (your's truly included), but never made a mark on consumers, will not get a second chance. According to Drive.com.au, Suzuki is unlikely to develop a replacement model. “That’s my headache. Kizashi was a very unlucky car,” said Suzuki’s Australian managing director Masaaki Kato. “We had so many arguments about the question: how to handle Kizashi. At that time, frankly speaking, we should not have introduced the car into the market in 2009. But you see, we made a big investment to develop this car… after heavy and hard discussion, we decided to introduce this Kizashi.” Aside from the poor timing of the launch, the Kizashi also had problems with poor brand recognition, and being in-between a compact and midsize sedan. Kato also revealed that Suzuki was working on turbocharged and V6 versions, along with a wagon before the company scrapped them due to the poor sales. Source: Drive.com.au William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  5. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com March 6, 2013 The end is here for Suzuki automobiles in the U.S. On Thursday, a judge from U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California in Santa Ana approved Suzuki's Chapter 11 reorganization plan. The plan calls for American Suzuki's motorcycle, ATV and marine engine businesses to exit bankruptcy and become part of a new, wholly-owned subsidiary of Suzuki Motor Corp, Suzuki Motor of America. Suzuki's automotive branch will go away after dealer sell off the remaining inventory. "Today's confirmation is a significant milestone and is one of the last remaining steps in our realignment and restructuring process," said Freddie Reiss, American Suzuki's chief restructuring officer in a statement. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), Suzuki William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 Court Approves American Suzuki Motor Corporation's Chapter 11 Plan BREA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--American Suzuki Motor Corporation (the "Company") today announced that the Honorable Scott C. Clarkson of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California in Santa Ana approved the confirmation of the Company's Chapter 11 Plan, which creditors overwhelmingly accepted. Confirmation of the Plan clears the way for the Company to complete its restructuring process, which is expected to occur on March 31, 2013. "Today's confirmation is a significant milestone and is one of the last remaining steps in our realignment and restructuring process" As previously announced, the Plan approved the Company's sale of its Motorcycles/ATV and Marine divisions and Automotive parts and service operation to a newly organized, wholly-owned subsidiary of Suzuki Motor Corporation. The subsidiary will operate in the continental U.S. as Suzuki Motor of America, Inc. and will use the Suzuki products brand name "Today's confirmation is a significant milestone and is one of the last remaining steps in our realignment and restructuring process," said M. Freddie Reiss, the Company's Chief Restructuring Officer. "During the next few weeks, we will take final steps to implement the Plan, which will allow the Company to sell its Motorcycles/ATV, Marine, Automotive parts and service divisions. This will promote the long-term growth of the Motorcycles/ATV and Marine divisions, as well as providing automotive parts and service through the dealer network." A copy of the Plan is available at www.omnimgt.com. Additional information regarding Company's business realignment can be found at the following website, www.suzuki.com, or via an information hotline at 1-877-465-4819. Click here to view the article
  6. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com March 6, 2013 The end is here for Suzuki automobiles in the U.S. On Thursday, a judge from U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California in Santa Ana approved Suzuki's Chapter 11 reorganization plan. The plan calls for American Suzuki's motorcycle, ATV and marine engine businesses to exit bankruptcy and become part of a new, wholly-owned subsidiary of Suzuki Motor Corp, Suzuki Motor of America. Suzuki's automotive branch will go away after dealer sell off the remaining inventory. "Today's confirmation is a significant milestone and is one of the last remaining steps in our realignment and restructuring process," said Freddie Reiss, American Suzuki's chief restructuring officer in a statement. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), Suzuki William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 Court Approves American Suzuki Motor Corporation's Chapter 11 Plan BREA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--American Suzuki Motor Corporation (the "Company") today announced that the Honorable Scott C. Clarkson of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California in Santa Ana approved the confirmation of the Company's Chapter 11 Plan, which creditors overwhelmingly accepted. Confirmation of the Plan clears the way for the Company to complete its restructuring process, which is expected to occur on March 31, 2013. "Today's confirmation is a significant milestone and is one of the last remaining steps in our realignment and restructuring process" As previously announced, the Plan approved the Company's sale of its Motorcycles/ATV and Marine divisions and Automotive parts and service operation to a newly organized, wholly-owned subsidiary of Suzuki Motor Corporation. The subsidiary will operate in the continental U.S. as Suzuki Motor of America, Inc. and will use the Suzuki products brand name "Today's confirmation is a significant milestone and is one of the last remaining steps in our realignment and restructuring process," said M. Freddie Reiss, the Company's Chief Restructuring Officer. "During the next few weeks, we will take final steps to implement the Plan, which will allow the Company to sell its Motorcycles/ATV, Marine, Automotive parts and service divisions. This will promote the long-term growth of the Motorcycles/ATV and Marine divisions, as well as providing automotive parts and service through the dealer network." A copy of the Plan is available at www.omnimgt.com. Additional information regarding Company's business realignment can be found at the following website, www.suzuki.com, or via an information hotline at 1-877-465-4819.
  7. AMERICAN SUZUKI MOTOR CORPORATION ANNOUNCES DECEMBER 2012 AUTOMOBILE SALES OF 1,946 UNITS Year-over-year decline of 620 units driven by decrease in total inventory as company’s remaining U.S. automobiles are allocated to auto dealers BREA, Calif., Jan. 3, 2013 – American Suzuki Motor Corporation (ASMC) reported today December 2012 automobile sales of 1,946 units, a 620 unit decline compared to the same period last year. The results were attributed to a decrease in available inventory as the company allocates its remaining automobiles in the U.S. to retail auto dealerships. “Now is a great time to purchase a Suzuki: 98% of Suzuki auto dealers have confirmed they will remain parts and continued service locations, and many are offering attractive financing options and incentives,” said M. Freddie Reiss, Chief Restructuring Officer for American Suzuki Motor Corporation. A final shipment of 2,500 vehicles is being shipped from Japan this month and will be distributed to auto dealers around the country. Full-year 2012 auto sales declined 5% compared with 2011, with total vehicle sales of 25,358 units.
  8. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com December 6, 2012 A month a after American Suzuki Corporation filled for bankruptcy and announced the closure of its automotive branch, 98% of its dealers (213 dealers) have agreed to a settlement offered by the company. The settlement would compensate dealers 50% within ten days of the agreement, with the rest following after the bankruptcy proceeding. The settlements also allow former dealers to operate as a service centers to provide warranty and repair services for Suzuki vehicles. "We greatly value our relationship with our customers, and it is very important to us that they continue to receive the necessary support from ASMC during and after our restructuring. As these agreements demonstrate, we are working within our current U.S. automotive dealer network to help structure a smooth transition from new automobile sales to exclusively parts and service operations," said Freddie Reiss, American Suzuki's chief restructuring officer. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Related Stories: Suzuki Vehicles Bid Adieu, Files Chapter 11 Suzuki Dealers Are Stuck Between A Rock And A Hard Place
  9. AMERICAN SUZUKI MOTOR CORPORATION’S NOVEMBER 2012 AUTOMOBILE SALES UP 22% YEAR-OVER-YEAR Strong month driven by SX4 sales, continued zero percent consumer financing for up to 72 months, ongoing commitment to customers, and support from dealers BREA, Calif., Dec. 3, 2012 – American Suzuki Motor Corporation (ASMC) reported today November 2012 sales of 2,224 units, a 22% increase compared to the same period last year. SX4 sales rose 42% year-over-year. This sales growth was fueled, in part, by strong consumer response to the continued availability of zero percent financing for up to 72 months for qualified customers through an agreement with Ally Financial Inc. As previously announced, during and after ASMC’s realignment and restructuring, all automobile warranties will continue to be fully honored according to their terms, and automobile parts and service will be provided without interruption through ASMC’s national dealer network. Suzuki offers basic warranty coverage for 36 months or 36,000 miles (whichever occurs first), as well as powertrain warranty coverage for seven years or 100,000 miles (whichever occurs first) for new vehicles in the U.S. “American Suzuki Motor Corporation is pleased with our strong monthly vehicle sales for November, and we look forward to working with our valued dealers across the country to ensure that remaining U.S. inventory is sold in the coming months,” said M. Freddie Reiss, Chief Restructuring Officer for ASMC. “Now is a great time for customers to consider Suzuki’s attractive financing options and the full commitment to vehicle warranties, parts and continued service in place across our complete range of vehicles.” ASMC announced on November 5, 2012, that it plans to realign its business to focus on the long-term growth of its Motorcycles/ATV and Marine divisions and to wind down and discontinue new automobile sales in the continental U.S., following a thorough review of its current position and future opportunities in the U.S. automotive market. ASMC has been working within its current U.S. automotive dealer network to help structure a smooth transition from new automobile sales to parts and service operations. ASMC intends to market and sell its remaining U.S. automobile inventory through its national network of automotive dealers; many of the high-volume dealers have expressed interest in continuing to order and receive shipments of Suzuki automobiles as long as they remain available. Additionally, ASMC motorcycle/ATV sales for November 2012 increased by 26% over the same period in last year, and November sales for ASMC’s Marine division were up over 50% year-over-year.
  10. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com November 13, 2012 The news of Suzuki automobiles leaving the U.S. has left their dealers with a choice, either take a cash settlement or take Suzuki to court. Last week, American Suzuki Motor Corporation was authorized by a U.S. Bankruptcy Court to borrow $45 million dollars as part of a settlement with dealers. The settlement would give dealers a cash settlement, and a new contract giving the dealers the rights to operate as parts and service centers for Suzuki vehicles if the dealers voluntary surrender their agreements with Suzuki. There’s two problems with the settlement. For one, the settlements to be paid out, Suzuki will use dealership sales, rent, vehicles in inventory, and investment in facilities to come up with a amount. This arrangement would cause dealers who didn’t sell that many Suzuki vehicles to get a small amount. Also, dealers who agree with the settlement also agree not to take legal action against Suzuki. Now, Suzuki dealers can decline the settlement and take the company to court to fight for what they are entitled to thanks to state franchise laws. The franchise laws make Suzuki buyback the dealer’s inventory of new vehicles and parts, and provide compensation for for rent, facility, and other costs. There’s a problem with this as well because a dealer’s claim could be just worth pennies on the dollar, especially after Suzuki pays its higher-priority creditors. "If Suzuki had chosen to exit the market and terminate the franchise agreements, it would have been subject to state franchise termination assistance provisions such as buying back vehicle inventory, parts, tools and rent on the dealership facility," said James Moors, NADA's director of franchising and state law. "NADA would be concerned if Suzuki is attempting to use the bankruptcy process to avoid its obligations to its dealers. NADA is reviewing this proposal and believes that Suzuki dealers should not receive less than what they are entitled to under their franchise agreements and applicable state law," Moors went onto say. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), 2 William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Related Stories: Suzuki Vehicles Bid Adieu, Files Chapter 11
  11. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com November 12, 2012 When the news broke of Suzuki leaving the U.S., there was chorus of people who said this; “How long does Mitsubishi have in the U.S.?” This a good question considering the evidence. Mitsubishi sales through October have dropped 29% to 50,103 vehicles. Mitsubishi’s market share has also dropped from 0.7% to 0.4% in the same period last year. Also, Mitsubishi’s dealers lead all automakers in the U.S. with backlogged inventory. "We have no intention whatsoever of withdrawing from the U.S. market. The U.S. market is a very important market," said Mitsubishi President Osamu Masuko. Masuko says the decline in sales is due to departure of four Mitsubishi models; the Eclipse coupe and convertible, Endeavor, and Galant. While sales are expected to totaled 55,000 vehicles in this fiscal year, Masuko says he expect sales to rebound to 80,000 vehicles in the next fiscal year thanks to new vehicles including the Outlander. Mitsubishi is also planning to expand production at its factory in Normal, Illinois from 50,000 to 70,000 vehicles to fill demand for markets including Russia, Latin America and the Middle East. Finally, Mitsubishi has appointed Gayu Uesugi as the chairman of Mitsubishi Motors North America. Uesugi duties will include crafting a profitable product plan, strategy for growth, and manufacturing blueprint for the U.S. Whether all of the moves work or not, we'll have to wait and see. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  12. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com November 5, 2012 We knew the day was coming, just when was the question. Now, that day has arrived. Earlier tonight, American Suzuki Motor Corporation has announced they would be filling for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and close up their automotive division. "In evaluating its position in the highly regulated and competitive U.S. automotive industry, ASMC determined that its Automotive division was facing a number of serious challenges. These challenges include low sales volumes, a limited number of models in its line-up, unfavorable foreign exchange rates, the high costs associated with growing and maintaining an automotive distribution system in the continental U.S. and the disproportionally high and increasing costs associated with stringent state and federal regulatory requirements unique to the U.S. market. While the decision to discontinue new automobile sales in the U.S. was difficult to make, today’s actions were inevitable under these circumstances. ASMC is dedicated to honoring its commitments to Automotive customers through and after the wind down of new automobile sales in the continental U.S.," said ASMC in a statement tonight. ASMC says they'll honor warranties, as well as supply parts and service cars through its dealer network. As for dealers, ASMC says they'll help dealers transition from selling vehicles to parts and service operations, and in certain cases, wind-down dealer operations. Suzuki won't fully disappear from the U.S. market. The company will still be selling motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, and marine products. Source: American Suzuki Motor Corporation William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 American Suzuki Motor Corporation (“ASMC”) Announces Restructuring and Realignment to Focus on Motorcycles/ATV and Marine Divisions ASMC to wind down and discontinue new automobile sales in continental U.S. Consumers will be protected and all warranties will continue to be fully honored BREA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--American Suzuki Motor Corporation (“ASMC” or “the Company”), the sole distributor in the continental United States of Suzuki Motor Corporation (“SMC”) automobiles, motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles and marine outboard engines, today announced that it plans to realign its business to focus on the long-term growth of its Motorcycles/ATV and Marine divisions. Following a thorough review of its current position and future opportunities in the U.S. automotive market, ASMC will wind down and discontinue new automobile sales in the continental U.S. The Company has determined the best path to achieve this realignment in an efficient and orderly manner is to restructure its operations under chapter 11. The case will be filed in the United States Bankruptcy Court, Central District of California in Santa Ana. Consistent with ASMC’s long history of standing by its products, owners of Suzuki automobiles will be protected. All warranties will continue to be fully honored and automobile parts and service will be provided to consumers without interruption through ASMC’s parts and service dealer network. ASMC remains firmly committed to Motorcycles/ATV and Marine products, and these divisions are competitively positioned in their respective markets, allowing for long-term growth as economic conditions improve. The realignment is intended to better position ASMC for long-term success and is a return to the Company’s roots in the U.S. market, which began with motorcycles and has grown to include ATV and marine products. ASMC remains very proud of its high quality, high performance motorcycle, ATV and Marine products. The Company will continue to bring ASMC products to market, including its full lineup of sportbike, cruiser, touring, scooter, dualsport, motocross, off-road motorcycles and KingQuad ATV line, as well as its flagship DF300AP, state-of-the-art DF20A, and DF15A, among other models. Additionally, ASMC is working to further build its market share through continued investment in additional support for dealers through marketing and advertising activities and sales promotion. Suzuki will continue to have a strong presence as a sponsor of teams in supercross, outdoor motocross and road racing. In evaluating its position in the highly regulated and competitive U.S. automotive industry, ASMC determined that its Automotive division was facing a number of serious challenges. These challenges include low sales volumes, a limited number of models in its line-up, unfavorable foreign exchange rates, the high costs associated with growing and maintaining an automotive distribution system in the continental U.S. and the disproportionally high and increasing costs associated with stringent state and federal regulatory requirements unique to the U.S. market. While the decision to discontinue new automobile sales in the U.S. was difficult to make, today’s actions were inevitable under these circumstances. ASMC is dedicated to honoring its commitments to Automotive customers through and after the wind down of new automobile sales in the continental U.S. An Orderly Process to Serve Consumers ASMC intends to work within its current U.S. Automotive dealer network to help structure a smooth transition from new automobile sales to exclusively parts and service operations, or, in some instances, an orderly wind down of dealership operations. ASMC intends to market and sell its remaining U.S. automobile inventory through its Automotive dealer network. Through and after the restructuring, all warranties will be fully honored and automobile parts and services will be provided to consumers through the dealer network. ASMC intends to honor any automobile buyback agreements that are currently in place with financial institutions. As part of its chapter 11 filings, ASMC will submit a proposed Plan of Reorganization and Disclosure Statement that specifies how the Motorcycle, ATV and Marine divisions will be maintained and enhanced, and how its relationship with Automotive dealers will be largely transitioned to support consumers and dealers through continued parts and service operations. SMC or its nominee intends to purchase ASMC’s Motorcycle, ATV and Marine businesses, as well as the Automotive service operation responsible for parts and warranties, through a new U.S. subsidiary that will retain the ASMC brand name. ASMC believes it has sufficient cash on hand to operate its businesses during the restructuring. If necessary, ASMC will request permission from the Court to borrow additional funds from SMC needed during the restructuring. Honoring Commitments ASMC intends to operate its Motorcycles/ATV and Marine businesses as usual and is dedicated to completing the realignment process as smoothly and efficiently as possible. ASMC will continue to fully stand behind all of its products and honor all warranties from these divisions. ASMC is working with GE Capital’s Retail Finance and Commercial Distribution Finance businesses to continue providing motorcycles and ATV consumer financing programs and motorcycle, ATV and marine dealer inventory financing respectively. The Company expects existing agreements with other dealer and consumer financing providers to continue as well. ASMC has filed a series of first day motions requesting approval to continue paying employee wages and benefits in the ordinary course, offering dealer incentives and payments under customer warranties. ASMC also expects to pay vendors in the normal course of business for goods and services delivered on or after its November 5, 2012 filing. Payments for goods received before ASMC’s November 5, 2012 filing will be made in accordance with the chapter 11 procedure. SMC, the 100 percent interest holder in ASMC, is not a debtor in the chapter 11 filing. ASMC’s legal advisor on the restructuring is Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones LLP, and its financial advisor is FTI Consulting, Inc. Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP is serving as special counsel on automobile dealer and industry issues. Further, ASMC has proposed the appointment of M. Freddie Reiss, Senior Managing Director at FTI Consulting, as Chief Restructuring Officer, and has also added two independent Board members to assist it through this period. Additional information regarding ASMC’s business realignment can be found at the Company’s website, www.suzuki.com, or via an information hotline at 1-877-465-4819.
  13. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com November 5, 2012 We knew the day was coming, just when was the question. Now, that day has arrived. Earlier tonight, American Suzuki Motor Corporation has announced they would be filling for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and close up their automotive division. "In evaluating its position in the highly regulated and competitive U.S. automotive industry, ASMC determined that its Automotive division was facing a number of serious challenges. These challenges include low sales volumes, a limited number of models in its line-up, unfavorable foreign exchange rates, the high costs associated with growing and maintaining an automotive distribution system in the continental U.S. and the disproportionally high and increasing costs associated with stringent state and federal regulatory requirements unique to the U.S. market. While the decision to discontinue new automobile sales in the U.S. was difficult to make, today’s actions were inevitable under these circumstances. ASMC is dedicated to honoring its commitments to Automotive customers through and after the wind down of new automobile sales in the continental U.S.," said ASMC in a statement tonight. ASMC says they'll honor warranties, as well as supply parts and service cars through its dealer network. As for dealers, ASMC says they'll help dealers transition from selling vehicles to parts and service operations, and in certain cases, wind-down dealer operations. Suzuki won't fully disappear from the U.S. market. The company will still be selling motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, and marine products. Source: American Suzuki Motor Corporation William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 American Suzuki Motor Corporation (“ASMC”) Announces Restructuring and Realignment to Focus on Motorcycles/ATV and Marine Divisions ASMC to wind down and discontinue new automobile sales in continental U.S. Consumers will be protected and all warranties will continue to be fully honored BREA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--American Suzuki Motor Corporation (“ASMC” or “the Company”), the sole distributor in the continental United States of Suzuki Motor Corporation (“SMC”) automobiles, motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles and marine outboard engines, today announced that it plans to realign its business to focus on the long-term growth of its Motorcycles/ATV and Marine divisions. Following a thorough review of its current position and future opportunities in the U.S. automotive market, ASMC will wind down and discontinue new automobile sales in the continental U.S. The Company has determined the best path to achieve this realignment in an efficient and orderly manner is to restructure its operations under chapter 11. The case will be filed in the United States Bankruptcy Court, Central District of California in Santa Ana. Consistent with ASMC’s long history of standing by its products, owners of Suzuki automobiles will be protected. All warranties will continue to be fully honored and automobile parts and service will be provided to consumers without interruption through ASMC’s parts and service dealer network. ASMC remains firmly committed to Motorcycles/ATV and Marine products, and these divisions are competitively positioned in their respective markets, allowing for long-term growth as economic conditions improve. The realignment is intended to better position ASMC for long-term success and is a return to the Company’s roots in the U.S. market, which began with motorcycles and has grown to include ATV and marine products. ASMC remains very proud of its high quality, high performance motorcycle, ATV and Marine products. The Company will continue to bring ASMC products to market, including its full lineup of sportbike, cruiser, touring, scooter, dualsport, motocross, off-road motorcycles and KingQuad ATV line, as well as its flagship DF300AP, state-of-the-art DF20A, and DF15A, among other models. Additionally, ASMC is working to further build its market share through continued investment in additional support for dealers through marketing and advertising activities and sales promotion. Suzuki will continue to have a strong presence as a sponsor of teams in supercross, outdoor motocross and road racing. In evaluating its position in the highly regulated and competitive U.S. automotive industry, ASMC determined that its Automotive division was facing a number of serious challenges. These challenges include low sales volumes, a limited number of models in its line-up, unfavorable foreign exchange rates, the high costs associated with growing and maintaining an automotive distribution system in the continental U.S. and the disproportionally high and increasing costs associated with stringent state and federal regulatory requirements unique to the U.S. market. While the decision to discontinue new automobile sales in the U.S. was difficult to make, today’s actions were inevitable under these circumstances. ASMC is dedicated to honoring its commitments to Automotive customers through and after the wind down of new automobile sales in the continental U.S. An Orderly Process to Serve Consumers ASMC intends to work within its current U.S. Automotive dealer network to help structure a smooth transition from new automobile sales to exclusively parts and service operations, or, in some instances, an orderly wind down of dealership operations. ASMC intends to market and sell its remaining U.S. automobile inventory through its Automotive dealer network. Through and after the restructuring, all warranties will be fully honored and automobile parts and services will be provided to consumers through the dealer network. ASMC intends to honor any automobile buyback agreements that are currently in place with financial institutions. As part of its chapter 11 filings, ASMC will submit a proposed Plan of Reorganization and Disclosure Statement that specifies how the Motorcycle, ATV and Marine divisions will be maintained and enhanced, and how its relationship with Automotive dealers will be largely transitioned to support consumers and dealers through continued parts and service operations. SMC or its nominee intends to purchase ASMC’s Motorcycle, ATV and Marine businesses, as well as the Automotive service operation responsible for parts and warranties, through a new U.S. subsidiary that will retain the ASMC brand name. ASMC believes it has sufficient cash on hand to operate its businesses during the restructuring. If necessary, ASMC will request permission from the Court to borrow additional funds from SMC needed during the restructuring. Honoring Commitments ASMC intends to operate its Motorcycles/ATV and Marine businesses as usual and is dedicated to completing the realignment process as smoothly and efficiently as possible. ASMC will continue to fully stand behind all of its products and honor all warranties from these divisions. ASMC is working with GE Capital’s Retail Finance and Commercial Distribution Finance businesses to continue providing motorcycles and ATV consumer financing programs and motorcycle, ATV and marine dealer inventory financing respectively. The Company expects existing agreements with other dealer and consumer financing providers to continue as well. ASMC has filed a series of first day motions requesting approval to continue paying employee wages and benefits in the ordinary course, offering dealer incentives and payments under customer warranties. ASMC also expects to pay vendors in the normal course of business for goods and services delivered on or after its November 5, 2012 filing. Payments for goods received before ASMC’s November 5, 2012 filing will be made in accordance with the chapter 11 procedure. SMC, the 100 percent interest holder in ASMC, is not a debtor in the chapter 11 filing. ASMC’s legal advisor on the restructuring is Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones LLP, and its financial advisor is FTI Consulting, Inc. Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP is serving as special counsel on automobile dealer and industry issues. Further, ASMC has proposed the appointment of M. Freddie Reiss, Senior Managing Director at FTI Consulting, as Chief Restructuring Officer, and has also added two independent Board members to assist it through this period. Additional information regarding ASMC’s business realignment can be found at the Company’s website, www.suzuki.com, or via an information hotline at 1-877-465-4819. Click here to view the article
  14. October 2012: American Suzuki

    BREA, Calif., Nov. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- American Suzuki Motor Corporation (ASMC) today reported October 2012 sales of 2,023 units, a 5% increase from October 2011. The newly refreshed Grand Vitara contributed to a 64% increase month over month, while SX4 sales remained steady with a 13% growth.
  15. 2012 Suzuki Kizashi Sport GTS AWD

    William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com August 30, 2012 If there was an automaker who closely followed Mitsubishi’s story in the U.S. to a degree, that automaker would be Suzuki. Suzuki, much like Mitsubishi was a rising star in the 1990’s and early 2000’s with vehicles like the Swift, Sidekick, Grand Vitara, XL7, and SX4. However in the late 2000’s, Suzuki began a fast decline into obscurity. Magazine and television ads began to disappear slowly, dealers either closed up shop or turned to something else, and people began to think that Suzuki was gone. Well, Suzuki is still around and building vehicles for the U.S. The brand’s newest vehicle, the Kizashi, is its second-take on a midsize sedan. Suzuki’s first attempt was the 2004 Verona. A rebadged Daewoo Magnus, the Verona was very forgettable and was pulled off the market. Since going on sale in 2010, the Kizashi has received favorable reviews in the automotive press as it is often lauded as one of the best sedans currently on sale. The buying public on the other hand doesn’t even know it exists. Does the Kizashi deserve more attention or should it stay in obscurity just like its brand? Next: The Outside Look Exterior Designers for the Kizashi went for a muscular, bold look. That’s evident when you look at the Kizashi ‘s front end where there is a sculpted hood, two-tiered front grille arrangement, a set of projector headlights, and flared front fenders. The side has a set of body skirts along the doors and a set of eighteen-inch sport wheels, which are standard equipment on the Sport GTS model, which we evaluated. Around the back, Suzuki’s designers did their own interpretation of the “Bangle-Butt” and it has actually worked. Other design cues for the back include an integrated spoiler with stoplight on the trunk lid and a set of chrome surrounds hiding the exhausts. Suzuki mostly pulls off the look on the Kizashi except for one item: ahead of the front wheels, Suzuki slapped on some bright orange reflectors for the turn signals. This addition doesn’t make sense for a vehicle design in the 21st century. Next: Come On In Interior The Kizashi’s interior is really impressive for a Suzuki. That might sound like an underhanded compliment, but anyone who has sat in past Suzuki vehicles knows, the interiors left a lot to desire. Materials used throughout are a combination of soft- and hard-touch plastics, and metal trim. Build quality is very good with no apparent gaps or separation of materials on the 14,000 mile example we had for review. The Sport GTS model comes with set a of bolstered, cloth bucket seats for the front passengers. The driver gets a power seat with ten-way adjustment, lumbar, and memory function. Finding a comfortable position in the seat does take some time, but you can find one. Back seat passengers will find a cloth-covered bench seat and a surprising amount of head and legroom. The Kizashi Sport GTS comes well equipped for the pricetag. Standard equipment includes a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, trip computer, dual-zone climate controls, Rockford Fosgate sound system, USB input for your MP3 player, sunroof, and 60/40 folding rear seats. The only options on our Kizashi were a trunk mat, floor mats, first aid kit, and a Bluetooth system. Next: Under the Hood Powertrain All Kizashi models come with one engine choice; a 2.4L inline-four producing either 185 HP (@ 6500 RPM) if you go for the six-speed manual or 180 HP (@ 6000 RPM) if you pick the CVT. Torque is 170 lb-ft (@ 4000 RPM), no matter the transmission choice. You also have the choice between front-wheel and all-wheel drive. If you do go for all-wheel drive like ours, you only transmission choice is the CVT. Leaving from a stop, the 2.4L is initially sluggish before it starts to build some speed at a quick rate, as the engine revs up. If you need to make a pass or merge onto a freeway, the 2.4 is able to perform without a sweat. The CVT makes sure to keep you in the power as best as it can and is very smooth. Also, Suzuki fitted steering wheel paddles to the Sport GTS to mimic a six-speed transmission. The paddles do work very well, giving you the feeling of total control when taking the Kizashi for an enthusiastic drive. The Kizashi’s AWD system is unique as you can turn the system on and off via a button next to the steering wheel. The only way you know when you have engaged the system is an AWD light turns on in the instrument cluster. The system will seamlessly kick on if the Kizashi has a loss of traction or if you decide to be aggressive. The sacrifice you make for the sure footedness of all-wheel drive is less than ideal fuel economy rating. The EPA rates the Kizashi Sport GTS AWD EPA at 22 City/29 Highway/25 Combined. This comes from the extra 292 lbs the AWD system adds to the Kizashi’s weight. Average for the week was 24.5 MPG. On the highway, the Kizashi did much better, recording an average of 32.3 MPG. Next: The Drive Ride & Drive The Kizashi’s suspension is made up of MacPherson struts up front and a five-point multilink setup in the rear. Steering comes in the form of an electric power steering system with a rack and pinion setup. The steering feels like something you would find in a sports car. Each turn of the Kizashi’s steering wheel is directly sent to front tires. In turn, the system provides a surprising amount of road feel for the driver. This combination makes the Kizashi a joy to drive on curvy roads. During normal driving, the Kizashi does a good job of proving a mostly comfortable and stable ride for passengers. Driving on rough surfaces, the Kizashi’s suspension does a decent job of minimizing the impacts. Noise from engine is mostly well-muted. The same cannot be said for road and wind noise as both are somewhat existent, but not to the point where you carry some ear plugs. Next: The Verdict Verdict I wasn’t quite sure how I would feel at the time of the Kizashi’s departure, after the week-long evaluation. When that time came, I felt surprised and amazed at Suzuki’s second mid-size effort. The muscular and sporty exterior hides one of the best suspension and all-wheel-drive setups in the class. Plus, the Kizashi has one of the better CVTs in the industry and comes with a nicely-equipped interior. However, the Kizashi isn’t the most fuel-efficient vehicle, despite being one of the smallest and lightest in its class. Plus, the 2.4L is very sluggish on initial acceleration. Those problems pale in comparison to the biggest drawback the Kizashi has, Suzuki itself. As I eluded in the introduction, Suzuki in the U.S. isn’t doing so hot. In a report back in April, we wondered whether the brand was preparing to the North American market leave because of certain developments. Some of those included cutting auto show appearances, saying goodbye to the top U.S. product planning and marketing executive, and suspending social media outreach. Since that report, the news for Suzuki hasn’t got any better. For 2012, sales are still down and the company is focusing on controlling its expenses. Add to the lack advertising and the silence any new products coming to U.S., and it’s easy to see why everyone is wondering what the future holds for Suzuki in the U.S. That leaves me in a tough spot with the Kizashi since I really liked it and would recommend it to anyone. However, the uncertainty of Suzuki in the States gives me some hesitation on recommending it. If you’re shopping for a new midsize sedan, you do at least need to give the Kizashi a chance. Vehicles like the Kizashi only appear once in a while and might be not be long before this disappears. Cheers: Exterior Styling Interior Equipment Interior Space CVT AWD System Handling during sporty and normal driving Jeers: Reflectors on front fenders Fuel economy of the AWD Model Suzuki going dark on everything Year - 2012 Make – Suzuki Model – Kizashi Trim – Sport GTS Engine – 2.4L Inline-Four Driveline – All Wheel Drive, CVT Horsepower @ RPM - 180 @ 6000 Torque @ RPM – 170 @ 4000 Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined – 22/29/25 Curb Weight – 3533 lbs Location of Manufacture – Sagara, Japan Base Price - $25,899.00 As Tested Price - $26,404.00* (Doesn’t include Destination Charge) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  16. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com August 17, 2012 This time at the Cheers & Gears Detroit Garage is a newcomer, the 2012 Suzuki Kizashi Sport GTS AWD (takes breath). For $26,404 (the pricetag on the car) 2.4L inline-four, CVT Transmission, AWD, sunroof, dual-zone climate control, an appearance package, and a banging 425 watt Rockford Fosgate sound system. The Kizashi sits in a interesting position in the new car field. Its size and pricetag puts somewhere between a compact and a mid-size vehicle. Think the last generation Volkswagen Jetta. First impressions are mostly good. The interior is put together well, steering and handling is quite good, and the powertrain combo works well when you get above about 2000 RPMs. I'll have more thoughts as the week with Kizashi goes on. In the meantime, if you have any questions, post them and I will do my best to answer them. William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  17. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com August 17, 2012 This time at the Cheers & Gears Detroit Garage is a newcomer, the 2012 Suzuki Kizashi Sport GTS AWD (takes breath). For $26,404 (the pricetag on the car) 2.4L inline-four, CVT Transmission, AWD, sunroof, dual-zone climate control, an appearance package, and a banging 425 watt Rockford Fosgate sound system. The Kizashi sits in a interesting position in the new car field. Its size and pricetag puts somewhere between a compact and a mid-size vehicle. Think the last generation Volkswagen Jetta. First impressions are mostly good. The interior is put together well, steering and handling is quite good, and the powertrain combo works well when you get above about 2000 RPMs. I'll have more thoughts as the week with Kizashi goes on. In the meantime, if you have any questions, post them and I will do my best to answer them. William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Click here to view the article
  18. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com August 10, 2012 Suzuki's presence in the U.S. is, um lackluster. However in other parts of the world, Suzuki is a major player. So whenever the company shows off a new vehicle or concept, that means its not for the U.S. However, a vehicle that will make its premiere at the Paris Motor Show could be arriving to the U.S. Suzuki has released two teaser images of the S-Cross concept, a small crossover. Suzuki says that the S-Cross has a "Emotion x Quality x Aerodynamics" design that uses "distinctive dynamic lines that start on the front bumper, sweep across the doors, and continue to the rear of the body." The S-Cross makes its appearance at the Paris Motor Show next month. William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 S-CROSS: C-SEGMENT CROSSOVER CONCEPT CAR TO DEBUT AT 2012 PARIS MOTOR SHOW The S-Cross, a concept car heralding a C-segment crossover model from Suzuki will be making its world debut at the 2012 Paris Motor Show from 27 September to 14 October*. Suzuki's crossover concept S-Cross embodies an "Emotion x Quality x Aerodynamics" design theme, which is typified by distinctive dynamic lines that start on the front bumper, sweep across the doors, and continue to the rear of the body. Design elements which suggest stability and solidity also help create a cutting-edge crossover look. Further information about the S-Cross and other Suzuki activities can be obtained at the Suzuki Press Conference, scheduled for 7.30 a.m. on 27 September in Hall 5.2 – Aisle B – Stand 509. Suzuki will also be presenting its Alto, Splash, Swift, Swift Sport, SX4, Jimny, and Grand Vitara models. *The 2012 Paris Motor Show will be open to the press on 27 and 28 September and then to the general public from 29 September to 14 October.
  19. July 2012 - Suzuki

    American Suzuki July 2012 Sales BREA, CA, Aug. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ - American Suzuki Motor Corporation (ASMC) today reported July 2012 sales of 2,266 units. Grand Vitara saw a 23% increase over July 2011 and continues a steady climb year over year, along with SX4s.
  20. American Suzuki July 2012 Sales BREA, CA, Aug. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ - American Suzuki Motor Corporation (ASMC) today reported July 2012 sales of 2,266 units. Grand Vitara saw a 23% increase over July 2011 and continues a steady climb year over year, along with SX4s. Click here to view the article
  21. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com July 17, 2012 The current Suzuki SX4 is going on six years and its beginning to show its age. Suzuki knows this and is working on the next generation SX4. Some new spy shots show how much progress Suzuki has made on the next SX4. The next SX4 appears to be much larger than the current model, thanks to larger greenhouse. Other design changes include a new grille and headlamps. There also appears to be a large intercooler that is hiding behind the lower fascia, meaning the next SX4 could be packing a turbo engine. This is a play for fuel economy and not performance. Source: Autoblog William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Click here to view the article
  22. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com July 17, 2012 The current Suzuki SX4 is going on six years and its beginning to show its age. Suzuki knows this and is working on the next generation SX4. Some new spy shots show how much progress Suzuki has made on the next SX4. The next SX4 appears to be much larger than the current model, thanks to larger greenhouse. Other design changes include a new grille and headlamps. There also appears to be a large intercooler that is hiding behind the lower fascia, meaning the next SX4 could be packing a turbo engine. This is a play for fuel economy and not performance. Source: Autoblog William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  23. June 2012 - Suzuki

    AMERICAN SUZUKI JUNE 2012 SALES UP 1 PERCENT American Suzuki Motor Corporation (ASMC) today reported June 2012 sales of 2,299 units, up 1 percent from last year. This is the second consecutive month of year over year sales growth fueled by a competitive 0% APR program on all models, which will continue into July. June’s sales increase was led by a 5 percent sales increase of the multipurpose SX4 Crossover and spirited Sedan. Grand Vitara sales remained steady with a 2 percent increase over June 2011. Note: No sales chart was made available at the time of this posting.
  24. AMERICAN SUZUKI JUNE 2012 SALES UP 1 PERCENT American Suzuki Motor Corporation (ASMC) today reported June 2012 sales of 2,299 units, up 1 percent from last year. This is the second consecutive month of year over year sales growth fueled by a competitive 0% APR program on all models, which will continue into July. June’s sales increase was led by a 5 percent sales increase of the multipurpose SX4 Crossover and spirited Sedan. Grand Vitara sales remained steady with a 2 percent increase over June 2011. Click here to view the article Jun-12 Jun-11 YTD June 2012 YTD June 2011 GRAND VITARA 419 410 2% 2562 2551 0% EQUATOR: 195 207 -6% 948 1017 -7% SX4: 1161 1105 5% 6457 6053 7% KIZASHI: 524 552 -5% 3018 3745 -19% XL7: 0 4 8 35 -77% TOTAL: 2299 2278 1% 12994 13402 -3%
  25. Suzuki Passing On LA & Detroit Shows William Maley - Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com October 28, 2011 Suzuki’s automotive branch is skipping next month’s Los Angeles Auto Show next month and Detroit’s North American International Auto Show in January. This move comes as part of the company’s effort to tighten its marketing budget. “For the upcoming season, our brand will selectively participate at auto shows where our distinctive and engaging story will resonate the most,” said Jeff Holland, spokesman for American Suzuki. In other words, Suzuki will be focusing will be focusing its marketing efforts on 20 U.S. regions where sales (and the company’s dealer network) are the strongest. LA isn’t a shock once you see that Suzuki has only sold 430 vehicles through the first nine months. Suzuki has also been hurt by the strength of yen relative to the dollar, which significantly drops the profits on small vehicles imported from Japan. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)