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Here at Unsealed 4X4 we often get asked a whole bunch of questions. Questions like, why does Evan look so good in trackpants, or who does Pat’s ironing? But every now and then we get a cracking question we just have to answer…

Ever since the Jimny was released earlier this year we have been asked time and time again for a comparison between a stocker and one with a few mods, you asked… and we’ve delivered. On this comparison, we’ve got Editor Evan Spence and freelancer Borgy out on the tracks of Lithgow, in the snow we might add, to see if a stock 2019 Suzuki Jimny can keep up with one lifted 60mm and one lifted 80mm, both with bigger tyres and other modifications to enhance the on and off-road experience.

You asked, we delivered… do a few mods make the 2019 Jimny even more fun?

Suzuki Jimny showdown

WORDS BY HANS OFFMIBIER

Stock vs modified

ABOVE Measurements were taken at the start of the day, quickly… so we could get back in front of the heater

ABOVE Adjustable Panhard rods are required when lifting the Jimny

VEHICLES

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Suzuki Jimny - Stock

ABOVE This track tested the stock Jimny, this was as far as we could get it safely // BELOW The stock Jimny was hung-up here for a bit, the modified versions walked on through

The first cab off the rank today is a stock Jimny and while it’s not the first one we have driven it is the first automatic we’ve been behind the wheel of. It’s hard not to love these little rough roaders, from the minute you get inside they scream fun. Sure, it hasn’t got the most room and the power isn’t mind blowing but it’s a good, fun drive.

The first thing we noticed was just how much easier the automatic gearbox makes the driving experience, especially off-road. You don’t have to think too much about gear choice and when it’s in low-range it’s pretty much point and shoot.

The downfall of the little Jimny is on rutted potholed dirt roads, put a few blokes inside and you’ll feel every single lump and bump in the road. We wanted to see how far we could take this little beast and we really did end up finding its limit, wheels in the air and a light front end meant there were quite a few times we needed to reverse back down the hill and pick a different line to avoid rolling the thing. And there were other times during a rutted section where the stock Jimny got caught up and needed a plenty of right foot to get it to push its way through.

SUZUKI JIMNY SPECIFICATIONS

SUSPENSION: Standard Front and Real Coil Sprung

GEARBOX: Automatic

TYRE SIZE:  195/80R15

APPROACH: 37 degrees

DEPARTURE: 49 degrees

EV'S THOUGHTS
I’ve driven the stock Jimny a few times now and it’s a barrel of fun, however, the suspension struggles on rough terrain and you can feel every bump along the way. It’s fun with a single person in it but loaded up it struggles when the going gets tough.

BORGYS THOUGHTS
It’s a capable rig straight out of the box, it has good approach and departure angle and its light so it will go anywhere but you do have to drive it very differently to, say, a Toyota LandCruiser or Nissan Patrol. It’s soft but jiggly, it’s like a Jelly box.

“The main thing that stood out was the increase in suspension travel between the stocker and both of the modified vehicles”

Modified Suzuki Jimny – 80mm lift

ABOVE The 80mm lifted Jimny has plenty more suspension travel compared to stock // BELOW Proper suspension transformed the ride of the Jimny on nasty surfaces

Our second test vehicle is the, ahem, biggest rig. This Jimny has been fitted with the largest suspension lift available on the market (a Tough Dog 80mm lift kit). Driving the same terrain as the stock vehicle the difference between the two was immediate, especially the ride, not only do you have more clearance under the vehicle thanks to the larger tyres and the lift, but the bounce and roll are better controlled too.

On the high-speed pot-holed track we drove out the back of Lithgow, the vehicle handled the bumps well, however, it became a little jittery off lumps and bumps as speeds increased. With more bodyroll through corners than the standard vehicle, you’ve got to pick your line and control your right foot.

Being the only manual on test, we found you’ve really got to keep the revs up to the thing to keep in touch with the other vehicles. No such issues in low-range, though. When it comes to articulation the big-lift Jimny is a lot more capable in the rough stuff, dealing with deep holes easily and keeping its wheels on the ground in areas where the stock vehicle was lifting and scrabbling.

SUZUKI JIMNY SPECIFICATIONS

SUSPENSION: Tough Dog 80mm lift kit, Foam cell shocks

GEARBOX: Manual

TYRE SIZE:  235/75R15

APPROACH: 55.2 degrees

DEPARTURE: 52 degrees

EV'S THOUGHTS
It goes to show that if you spend your money right, you don’t need a lot. A simple lift and a good set of tyres and your Jimny will go to the next level.

BORGYS THOUGHTS
You can really feel the difference straight away, I feel like I could go anywhere in this thing.

THE OWNER
This little beige beast is owned by Opposite Lock Southside in Sydney. The team at Opposite Lock wanted to show that good 4WDs don’t just have to have a Toyota badge and run 35s. This little beast is running the 80mm Tough Dog lift with the largest legal tyre you can run.

Suzuki Jimny – 60mm Lift

ABOVE We found the 60mm lifted Jimny, with ARB bull bar and Front Runner roof rack, to be the best overall performer // BELOW This is where slightly larger tyres and better suspension helped the most, potholed dirt roads are not friends with the stock Jimny

With a 60mm lift via Tough Dog, the touring-spec Jimny, as we nicknamed it, has an ARB bar on the front, roof racks, lights, and bigger tyres. Across the high-speed dirt section, the lifted Jimny felt stable and controlled, better than both the standard and 80mm-lifted Jimny. One thing we noticed, even with all our gear on-board, was that even on bigger, harder hits the 60mm lift kept the Jimny from hitting its bump stops.

Across the moguls, this was the best performer on the day. Sure, it lacked the ultimate articulation of the 80mm lift, but it felt better balanced across all terrains, and the addition of mud-terrain tyres meant grip was much better than the stock vehicle too.

SUZUKI JIMNY SPECIFICATIONS

SUSPENSION: Tough Dog 60mm lift kit, Foam cell shocks

GEARBOX: Automatic

TYRE SIZE:  215/70R15

APPROACH: 45 degrees

DEPARTURE: 52.5 degrees

EV'S THOUGHTS
The biggest disadvantage of all of these vehicles is the fact that I don’t own one and I would really like to, you can daily drive it or take it to the desert… Just don’t take much gear with you.

BORGYS THOUGHTS
The main thing that stood out for me was the increase in suspension travel between the stocker and both of the modified vehicles, the handling felt much more controlled. This one would be my favourite though, the 60mm lift is the one I’d choose.

THE OWNER
Josh is a Zook man through and through, he was the first Suzuki owner to hand over his keys to the Tough Dog R&D team to work on the new suspension kit. After the suspension was fitted it only took a few weeks for the little Zook to get barwork, tyres, roof rack and plenty of other little goodies to make it Josh’s ultimate weekend fun machine.

ABOVE If this looks like fun, that’s because it is. So much!

VEHICLES

You asked, we delivered… do a few mods make the 2019 Jimny even more fun?

Here at Unsealed 4X4 we often get asked a whole bunch of questions. Questions like, why does Evan look so good in trackpants, or who does Pat’s ironing? But every now and then we get a cracking question we just have to answer…

Ever since the Jimny was released earlier this year we have been asked time and time again for a comparison between a stocker and one with a few mods, you asked… and we’ve delivered. On this comparison, we’ve got Editor Evan Spence and freelancer Borgy out on the tracks of Lithgow, in the snow we might add, to see if a stock 2019 Suzuki Jimny can keep up with one lifted 60mm and one lifted 80mm, both with bigger tyres and other modifications to enhance the on and off-road experience.

WORDS BY HANS OFFMIBIER

Suzuki Jimny showdown

Stock vs modified

ABOVE Measurements were taken at the start of the day, quickly… so we could get back in front of the heater

ABOVE Adjustable Panhard rods are required when lifting the Jimny

ADVERTISEMENT
SCROLL TO CONTINUE
Suzuki Jimny - Stock

The first cab off the rank today is a stock Jimny and while it’s not the first one we have driven it is the first automatic we’ve been behind the wheel of. It’s hard not to love these little rough roaders, from the minute you get inside they scream fun. Sure, it hasn’t got the most room and the power isn’t mind blowing but it’s a good, fun drive.

The first thing we noticed was just how much easier the automatic gearbox makes the driving experience, especially off-road. You don’t have to think too much about gear choice and when it’s in low-range it’s pretty much point and shoot.

The downfall of the little Jimny is on rutted potholed dirt roads, put a few blokes inside and you’ll feel every single lump and bump in the road. We wanted to see how far we could take this little beast and we really did end up finding its limit, wheels in the air and a light front end meant there were quite a few times we needed to reverse back down the hill and pick a different line to avoid rolling the thing. And there were other times during a rutted section where the stock Jimny got caught up and needed a plenty of right foot to get it to push its way through.

ABOVE This track tested the stock Jimny, this was as far as we could get it safely // BELOW The stock Jimny was hung-up here for a bit, the modified versions walked on through

BORGYS THOUGHTS
It’s a capable rig straight out of the box, it has good approach and departure angle and its light so it will go anywhere but you do have to drive it very differently to, say, a Toyota LandCruiser or Nissan Patrol. It’s soft but jiggly, it’s like a Jelly box.

EV'S THOUGHTS
I’ve driven the stock Jimny a few times now and it’s a barrel of fun, however, the suspension struggles on rough terrain and you can feel every bump along the way. It’s fun with a single person in it but loaded up it struggles when the going gets tough.

SUZUKI JIMNY SPECIFICATIONS

SUSPENSION: Standard Front and Real Coil Sprung

GEARBOX: Automatic

TYRE SIZE:  195/80R15

APPROACH: 37 degrees

DEPARTURE: 49 degrees

“The main thing that stood out was the increase in suspension travel between the stocker and both of the modified vehicles”

ADVERTISEMENT
SCROLL TO CONTINUE
Modified Suzuki Jimny – 80mm lift

Our second test vehicle is the, ahem, biggest rig. This Jimny has been fitted with the largest suspension lift available on the market (a Tough Dog 80mm lift kit). Driving the same terrain as the stock vehicle the difference between the two was immediate, especially the ride, not only do you have more clearance under the vehicle thanks to the larger tyres and the lift, but the bounce and roll are better controlled too.

On the high-speed pot-holed track we drove out the back of Lithgow, the vehicle handled the bumps well, however, it became a little jittery off lumps and bumps as speeds increased. With more bodyroll through corners than the standard vehicle, you’ve got to pick your line and control your right foot.

Being the only manual on test, we found you’ve really got to keep the revs up to the thing to keep in touch with the other vehicles. No such issues in low-range, though. When it comes to articulation the big-lift Jimny is a lot more capable in the rough stuff, dealing with deep holes easily and keeping its wheels on the ground in areas where the stock vehicle was lifting and scrabbling.

ABOVE The 80mm lifted Jimny has plenty more suspension travel compared to stock // BELOW Proper suspension transformed the ride of the Jimny on nasty surfaces

BORGYS THOUGHTS
You can really feel the difference straight away, I feel like I could go anywhere in this thing.

EV'S THOUGHTS
It goes to show that if you spend your money right, you don’t need a lot. A simple lift and a good set of tyres and your Jimny will go to the next level.

SUZUKI JIMNY SPECIFICATIONS

SUSPENSION: Tough Dog 80mm lift kit, Foam cell shocks

GEARBOX: Manual

TYRE SIZE:  235/75R15

APPROACH: 55.2 degrees

DEPARTURE: 52 degrees

THE OWNER
This little beige beast is owned by Opposite Lock Southside in Sydney. The team at Opposite Lock wanted to show that good 4WDs don’t just have to have a Toyota badge and run 35s. This little beast is running the 80mm Tough Dog lift with the largest legal tyre you can run.

Suzuki Jimny – 60mm Lift

With a 60mm lift via Tough Dog, the touring-spec Jimny, as we nicknamed it, has an ARB bar on the front, roof racks, lights, and bigger tyres. Across the high-speed dirt section, the lifted Jimny felt stable and controlled, better than both the standard and 80mm-lifted Jimny. One thing we noticed, even with all our gear on-board, was that even on bigger, harder hits the 60mm lift kept the Jimny from hitting its bump stops.

Across the moguls, this was the best performer on the day. Sure, it lacked the ultimate articulation of the 80mm lift, but it felt better balanced across all terrains, and the addition of mud-terrain tyres meant grip was much better than the stock vehicle too.

ABOVE We found the 60mm lifted Jimny, with ARB bull bar and Front Runner roof rack, to be the best overall performer // BELOW This is where slightly larger tyres and better suspension helped the most, potholed dirt roads are not friends with the stock Jimny

BORGYS THOUGHTS
The main thing that stood out for me was the increase in suspension travel between the stocker and both of the modified vehicles, the handling felt much more controlled. This one would be my favourite though, the 60mm lift is the one I’d choose.

EV'S THOUGHTS
The biggest disadvantage of all of these vehicles is the fact that I don’t own one and I would really like to, you can daily drive it or take it to the desert… Just don’t take much gear with you.

SUZUKI JIMNY SPECIFICATIONS

SUSPENSION: Tough Dog 60mm lift kit, Foam cell shocks

GEARBOX: Automatic

TYRE SIZE:  215/70R15

APPROACH: 45 degrees

DEPARTURE: 52.5 degrees

THE OWNER
Josh is a Zook man through and through, he was the first Suzuki owner to hand over his keys to the Tough Dog R&D team to work on the new suspension kit. After the suspension was fitted it only took a few weeks for the little Zook to get barwork, tyres, roof rack and plenty of other little goodies to make it Josh’s ultimate weekend fun machine.

ABOVE If this looks like fun, that’s because it is. So much!