By on September 28, 2012

While not mentioned explicitly, this is Suzuki’s SX4 replacement – the Dodge Caliber S-Cross Concept – which is all but ready for dealer showrooms for 2013.

Suzuki seems to be taking a page out of Chrysler’s handbook from the mid-2000s: throw out a relatively smart, simple, small car and replace it with something that’s between C-segment runabout and SUV. We all know how successful that decision was.

While all other auto manufacturers are wasting their efforts on making smaller, more fuel efficient vehicles for the future, Suzuki is force-feeding hamburgers to the SX4 replacement and butching it up for crossover duty. After all, those millennial will need the extra ride height to clear curbs in front of the knock-off Starbuck’s.

The new S-Cross, confirmed for Europe (where the Suzuki portfolio has more models than one can count with one hand), was shown to the masses for the first time this week at the 2012 Paris Motor Show. A video clip featuring the S-Cross opens with some dubstep style beats ruined by some musical compositions pulled from any number of Sega Saturn video game titles. The mix-mash of environmental imagery makes you wonder if a Suzuki marketing professional spent the weekend watching Tron, Mad Max, and Lord of the Rings in a single sitting. But, we’re talking about the S-Cross, right.

The “concept”, painted in the same green hue which graced the 2005 Mercedes-Benz Bionic “Boxfish” design study (maybe the concept vehicle department went to the recyclers for their paint), is a jacked up C-segment crossover with available 20 inch dubs and updated four-wheel-drive system derived from other models in the stable. It represents the first vehicle in an aggressive push by Suzuki to release a new vehicle every year in Europe – because sales there are red hot! – but has not yet been confirmed for North America. While there has been no official word on what will propel the S-Cross, don’t expect a fancy hybrid or turbo setup, as you can probably bet Suzuki will be keeping costs in check.


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14 Comments on “2012 Paris Motor Show: Suzuki S-Cross Concept Embraces Crossover Trend And Ignores History (w/ video)...”

  • avatar

    Jeez, that’s harsh. In no way does this resemble the butt-ugly Tonka truck look of the Caliber. Looks like a reasonably attractive small wagon, er, CUV to me.

  • avatar

    How much did Suzuki pay Volvo for this design?

    If they really make this thing, they’ll need a gimmick. The Hamsters have already signed up with Kia.

  • avatar

    I really like what they did with the A pillar, it really gives the greenhouse a unique look. Maybe this is a fore bearer of Suzuki styling to come?

  • avatar

    I like it a lot. Bring it to the US.

  • avatar

    I’m glad someone else likes it. It gets really lonely when you are the only one that does and everyone berate the vehicle (and you). I have proven over the years to be the oddball that likes things others don’t. That doesn’t bother me but I don’t comment on it much.

  • avatar

    TTAC: “While all other auto manufacturers are wasting their efforts on making smaller, more fuel efficient vehicles for the future, Suzuki is force-feeding hamburgers to the SX4 replacement and butching it up for crossover duty.”

    There is a lot of unnecessary vitriol in this article while completely missing the point of what this car really is.

    Its not ‘other manufacturers”, making small fuel-efficient car is basically what Suzuki does. In fact, that’s all they really do.

    What they lack is something larger. Which is why they made a CUV of their SX4. The reason for Suzuki is that the SX4 is made in 5 factories around the world (Japan, Hungary, Indonesia, and India); meaning they can easily produce this car globally. The Kizashi, by comparison, is only made in Japan, making it undesirable to export considering the high-yen).

    Suzuki is trying to make a car that can fit into both emerging markets (that they are strong in) and developed countries (which they are weak in). This car bridges that gap best within Suzuki’s limited capabilities.

    Being that it can be produced in low-cost areas like Indonesia and India, it means that it can be price competitive and sold affordably even in emerging countries, for developed worlds it may actually be considered ‘cheap’. All without dramatic new investments or tooling because its the car that Suzuki is most globalized in.

    Keep in mind, Honda also intends to build a CUV of their Fit/Jazz, and the Ford already showed their CUV of their Fiesta (the 1.0L three-cylinder powered Ecosport).

  • avatar

    The SX4 has been marketed as a crossover for a while now, to the point where “crossover” is a trim level for it. It’s kind of a logical next step, albeit still kinda stupid (like 90% of crossovers.)

  • avatar

    The car itself seems rather benign, similar to a Rogue. Small car made to look like small SUV/CUV. It’s a moldy niche and I want it to die.

    I know this next part owes to my childhood, when I would see “faces” in both the front and back of cars.
    Placing LED’s next to the exhaust is like putting eyes next to an anus.

  • avatar

    I think this would be a great update to the SX4, as it draws a lot of it’s design elements from the current Kizashi. Having just purchased a new Kizashi GTS AWD, a step up from my ’09 SX4, I think Suzuki is on the right track. All they need now, is to bring the Swift over, and they would have a very well balanced lineup. Swift, SX4, Kizashi, Grand Vitara. I’ve owned four “genuine” Suzuki’s (no Dawoos), and they have all been good, reliable cars.

  • avatar

    I think it makes sense that Suzuki wanted to replace the poorly selling SX4 with something different, something that competes in a different class of vehicles. I mean, if the SX4 was a big success, it might be a folly to replace it with something different, but since the SX4 failed to gain traction seemingly everywhere, why not try something different?

    • 0 avatar

      I think Suzuki America, and GM’s decision to drop the partnership hurt Suzuki the most. Also, selling trash Daewoo cars as genuine Suzuki’s didn’t help much. I think the SX4 has been a good car for Suzuki, and there are plenty of them in the Pittsburgh area, plus, they still sell in many other parts of the world. I think the SX4 needs an upgrade to make room for the Swift.

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