Founded in 1955, Suzuki is better known for
the manufacture of motorcycles, although there
have been some worthy four-wheeled versions to
come from the Japanese manufacturer. Their first
iteration was the tiny Suzulite; designed to
benefit from Japanese tax laws with its little
21.97ci 360cc engine, it would pave the way for
larger, albeit still very small versions. The
most significant of the early exports was the
4 stroke LJ80, later renamed Jimny.
off road with exceptional economy to boot, its
reputation in the bush would see it garner an
allegiance of fans across Australia, although
those that chose to use it as a cheap form of
urban run-about were in for considerable disappointment.
The LJ80 would morph into the much more sophisticated
Vitara, while small sedans would help fill out
the Suzuki product line. The Swift was anything
but, although the latest version has received
considerable praise and is a much superior car.
Suzuki’s are not collectable, but they
have been a popular part of the Australian motoring
landscape since the early 1970’s.