Capable of all-around good performance, the Suzuki Grand Vitara is the more powerful version of the Suzuki Vitara. It is a sport utility vehicle that bridges the gap between the compact and mid-size vehicles in its class. Offering seating capacity for a maximum of five people, the Grand Vitara has plenty of passenger and cargo room. The vehicle is available in rear-wheel or four-wheel drive with an engine in the front.
Although the Grand Vitara is a smaller sport utility vehicle, it boasts plenty of power, which is impressive for this four-cylinder-engine automobile. The 2.4-Liter engine offers 166 horsepower and is powered by regular gas. Thanks to an economical motor source, the Grand Vitara boasts an EPA fuel economy of 19 miles per gallon in the city and 23-26 on the highway, with slightly less for the V6 option. Commonly called an off-road athlete;" the four-wheel drive Grand Vitara is versatile enough to trek through rough surfaces and tow up to 3,000 pounds.
First marketed in Japan as the Escudo, the Grand Vitara didn't make it to American showroom floors until 2001. Throughout recent years, the vehicle has experienced some changes. The 2007 base models received new low-range transmission gearing; the following year saw no changes. Later in 2009, the Grand Vitara gained a 2.4-Liter engine with 166 horsepower; the V6 version went from 2.7 liters to 3.2, making the total horsepower 230. All of the Grand Vitara models also saw body style changes that year. In 2010, the vehicle received a factory standard navigation system in all models.
Two of the most popular models sold are the XSport and Premium. Both come with standard automatic transmission, but the option for a five-speed manual is also available. The Premium has the fuel-efficient four-cylinder engine, while the XSport has a V6. Surprisingly, the XSport has the same gas mileage averages as the Premium, making it the more desirable choice for its off-road versatility and added power. Premium Special Edition Grand Vitaras, as well as Limited-Editions, are also available.
Throughout its history, the Grand Vitara was awarded several recognitions and honors. In more recent years, it received the 2008 and 2009 Overlander Best Compact SUV awards. It also received the 2008 and 2009 4x4 Best Compact SUV in Australia awards. In 2010, it was also awarded the Overlander Best Small Wagon recognition. U.S. News ranked the 2011 Grand Vitara as number 12 of the 23 Most Affordable Compact SUVs.
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