Suzuki has big plans for its flagship model, the Kizashi. That much we already know. What we didn’t expect though was that the model would be branching out with different variants.
At the New York Auto Show, the Japanese automaker further cemented their intention of giving its customers new options for the sedan by unveiling a couple of concept cars tied up to its name.
One of these concepts is the Kizashi EcoCharge Concept, a hybrid vehicle Suzuki is preparing to compete against the likes of the Toyota Prius and the Honda Insight, among other hybrid cars out on the market these days.
While Suzuki hasn’t had any discussions on the production plans for the car, we’d be very surprised if this model doesn’t get greenlighted for production soon, especially when you consider that the market is ripe for other brands to enter and give its established rivals a run for their money.
Either way, its looking more and more likely that the hybrid wars will have to make room for another vehicle.
Details on the Suzuki Kizashi EcoCharge Concept after the jump.
Exterior and Interior
Just like the Kizashi Apex Concept, the EcoCharge version doesn’t come with a whole lot of styling changes, but since it’s technically a concept, a number of elements were nevertheless added. Chief among them include a luminescent white satin paint finish that has a blue undercoat, modified headlamps, LED fog lights, and a set of bespoke alloy wheels.
As with any other hybrid car, the Kizashi EcoCharge Concept comes with a 2.0-liter inline-four gas engine producing 144 horsepower to go along with an electric propulsion system made up of a liquid-cooled 15-kW motor unit that’s tied to a 115-volt air-cooled lithium-ion battery. In order to make the most out of the engine, Suzuki gave the concept Kizashi items like a regenerative braking, a start/stop system, and a fuel-cut off system, all of which were added to ensure maximum fuel efficiency. Complete figures of the car were not released, but according to Suzuki, the EcoCharge Concept is 25% more efficient over the standard Kizashi when it comes to highway fuel efficiency.
No pricing details were revealed for the EcoCharge Concept, but we’re optimistic that we’re going to see a production version of this Kizazhi hybrid sooner rather than later.
What Toyota started with the Prius has evolved into an automotive free-for-all for hybrid supremacy among automakers all over the world. While it’s late to the party, Suzuki is nonetheless gunning for the established names in the market segment, particularly its Japanese rivals that include the aforementioned Prius, the Honda Insight, and the Nissan Altima Hybrid.
Despite its neophyte status in the hybrid segment, Suzuki is determined to give the Kizashi EcoCharge as much ammunition as it can possibly get, and while it’s going to have its hands full trying to knock its competitors off of their respective perches, we do know that Suzuki is going to bring the fight straight to them.
A new option for hybrid cars
Powertrain could be better
Lights configuration looks cool
Not a lot of exterior and interior changes
Tough market to break into
Waiting for production version