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Versatile Suzuki Grand Vitara Diesel Arrives in NZ

Versatile Suzuki Grand Vitara Diesel Arrives in New Zealand

Fuel efficiency, low emissions and great pulling power are keys to the new diesel engined version of the third generation Suzuki Grand Vitara.

The highly economical four-wheel-drive Grand Vitara joins the New Zealand line-up of Suzuki cars in April.

Not only is this latest five-door Grand Vitara one of the thriftiest Sport Utility Vehicle cars on the market, it also emits the lowest CO2 emissions of any Grand Vitara model.

In official fuel consumption tests the new diesel version is more economical than all other petrol Grand Vitaras, setting new standards for fuel efficiency in the medium SUV four-wheel-drive class.

The 1.9-litre turbocharged diesel version also offers more power and torque than the previous model Grand Vitara diesel.

There is an 18.7% increase in power and an 11% lift in engine torque compared to the second generation Grand Vitara that was phased out last year.

The new model is visually similar to the five-door versions of the new series Grand Vitara which launched in New Zealand last September.

It is powered by the Renault F9Q common rail diesel engine with direct, electronic fuel injection, a Garret water-cooled turbocharger and a single overhead camshaft.

This four-cylinder, 1,870cm3 motor runs on a compression ratio of 17.0 to 1 and produces 95 kW (129 brake horsepower) at 3,750 rpm. The previous Grand Vitara diesel had an 80 kW engine.

Peak torque of 300 Nm at a low 2,000 rpm exceeds any other Suzuki model and helps provide the Grand Vitara with excellent mid-range response and flexibility.

By comparison, the 2-litre petrol Grand Vitara achieves 183 Nm of torque and the 2.7-litre V6 petrol version a maximum of 250 Nm.

Top speed is just over 170 km/h, and the 0 to 100 km/h acceleration run takes 13.2 seconds.

Towing capacity is 1850 kg and off road capability is even better because strong engine braking helps to control descents.

Fitted with a particulate filter, the F9Q engine complies with stringent Euro 4 emission regulations and is one of the cleanest diesels available. The 205 grams/km of CO2 emitted by the engine is outstandingly low.

In the official urban/city fuel test cycle, the Grand Vitara diesel is 23.4 percent more economical than the 2-litre petrol version. In all three fuel tests, the diesel versions average an 18.4 percent improvement.

In European tests the diesel model achieved 6.7 litres/100 km (42.2 miles per gallon) in the extra urban open road fuel cycle, 9.4 litres/100 km (30.1 mpg) in the urban cycle and 7.7 litres/100 km (36.7 mpg) in the combined cycle.

Common rail diesel technology improves combustion, lowers emissions and enhances fuel economy.

Fuel is precisely bled off from a highly pressurised reservoir commonly shared by every injector along the feedpipe or "rail". Exactly the correct amount of diesel is injected when required.

The Bosch CP3 common rail is effectively a storage tube, and injection pressure is much higher at 1,350 bar instead of 900 bar. Pre-catalysers are fitted to the motor.

Throttle response is better, assisted by a multi-fin variable nozzle turbo and the engine is also quieter.

Turbo boost pressure is regulated by the variable fins which are vacuum controlled via a solenoid valve.

At low revs, the fins are in a flat angle so the turbine speed is high even though exhaust gas speed is slow.

At high rpm, the fins are set at a steep angle, lowering turbine speed even so the exhaust gas speed is high.

An electrical turbo cooling pump controlled by the electronic control management ensures the circulation of engine coolant through the turbocharger even after the engine has stopped.

For lightness, the 1.9-litre diesel engine has an aluminium cylinder head and sump.

When cold, three thermo plungers warm up the engine coolant to improve cabin heating.

Suzuki has altered the gear ratios to suit the engine characteristics and the Grand Vitara diesel is equipped with the same four-mode full-time four-wheel-drive transmission as the 2.0-litre petrol and 2.7-litre V6 petrol versions.

Simply by dialling in the mode on the dial in the central dashboard panel, four high, four high lock or four low lock can be selected. With the choice of high and low ratios, there are effectively ten forward gear ratios.

The transmission can be switched into four high lock mode at vehicle speeds up to 100 km/h. A 5-speed manual gearbox is fitted and no automatic transmission is available.

Suzuki has specified the diesel model to the same high standard as the 2.7-litre V6 petrol Grand Vitara.

Standard equipment includes 225/70 R16 series tyres, aluminium alloy wheels, a full spare wheel cover, roof rails, climate control air conditioning, height adjustable driver's seat, security immobilizer and anti-lock braking with electronic brake force distribution.

The new Grand Vitara diesel has a recommended retail price of $37,500, the same as the 2.7-litre V6 petrol Grand Vitara automatic.

"Arrival of the diesel model means the Grand Vitara will appeal to an even wider section of the market," said Tom Peck, General Manager of Marketing for Suzuki New Zealand.

"The Grand Vitara is available in either three-door or five-door forms, and we now offer a choice of four engines, including the new diesel power, and six different models," he said.

With its integrated chassis and unique four-wheel-drive system, the Grand Vitara is still one of the few compact SUVs that can claim a true 4WD system while providing the extra safety of full time 4WD and a dial up high / low ratio selector.


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