With the Suzuki Jimny being a bit long in the tooth and the crossover and SUV market booming in recent years, the Japanese carmaker decided to bring a funky-looking supermini crossover to the 2015 Geneva Motor Show. Called iM-4, the concept was shown alongside the iK-2 supermini, both featuring a new Suzuki platform.

Unlike the lionhearted Jimny, whose current generation is heading toward its 20th birthday in 2018, the iM-4 Concept is a lot less rugged- and more urban-looking, not to mention that it features five doors instead of just three. With a "love it or hate it" exterior design that harks back to Kei cars like the Suzuki Fronte Coupé and the first-generation Cervo, the model could make quite a splash in the segment if it gets produced with a similar look.

Updated 03/03/2015: Suzuki iM-4 concept car made its world debut at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show. It features a new-generation platform and a SHVS mild hybrid system.

Click "Continue Reading" to read my full preview of the 2015 Suzuki iM-4 Concept.

  • 2015 Suzuki iM-4
  • Year:
  • Make:
  • 0-60 time:
    12 sec. (Est.)
  • Top Speed:
    108 mph (Est.)
  • Price:
    15000 (Est.)
  • Price:
  • car segment:
  • body style:


The front end has a Volkswagen Amarok combined with Kia Soul vibe, but I can’t really put my finger on any car used for reference by Suzuki. The retro Kei car look is present from just about any angle, with only a couple of modern details keeping it from looking like a Japanese micro-car from the 1970s.

The side profile is very angular, while the greenhouse-to-door height ratio is clearly that of a concept car with poor all-around visibility. The engine has a pair of side outlets that remind me of the old Vitara, while the blacked out A- and B-pillars hark back to the Swift and create a so-called "floating roof" effect, especially on a white car like the iM-4 Concept. The model’s rear end does look a bit like a distressed cartoon animal, courtesy of a pair of "surprised" LED taillights accompanied by two more LED strips integrated into the bumper.

Exterior Dimensions

Overall length 3,693 MM (145.39 Inches)
Overall width 1,709 MM (67.28 Inches)
Overall height 1,566 MM (61.65 Inches)
Wheelbase 2,438 MM (95.98 Inches)


Suzuki hasn’t revealed any details or photos with the iM-4 Concept’s interior, but I think it safe to say that the production version (if there ever is one) will probably share some of the knobs and buttons with the Swift and/or the production version of the iK-2 Concept. Don’t expect anything too upscale, in other words.


Based on an new Suzuki platform that is shared with the iK-2 Concept, the tiny crossover comes with four-wheel drive, albeit the carmaker doesn’t specify if it also includes a low-range transfer case like the more hardcore Jimny – I suspect not. Power comes from a 1.2-liter Dualjet four-cylinder, which is called that because it features twin fuel injectors on every cylinder. Shared with the Suzuki Swift, the powerplant delivers 89 horsepower and 89 pound-feet of torque, so don’t expect any mind-boggling performance figures. Thanks to low weight, small dimensions and a 4WD system, the iM-4 could be as plucky as the Jimny in off-road.


Fiat 500X

2016 - 2018 Fiat 500X Exterior
- image 580074

One of the few competitors I can come up for a possible production version of the iM-4 is the Fiat 500X. The tiny Fiat seems just about as “useful” as this Suzuki, but at least it looks better. The 500X starts at a relatively low $20,000 for the front-wheel-drive Pop trim level, but to get into all-wheel drive, you’ll need to upgrade to the Easy trim for $22,300 and add in $1,900 to bring the total to $24,200.

In the U.S., the 500X comes standard with a 1.4-liter turbocharged engine that produces 160 horsepower, while its optional 2.4-liter engine puts out 180.

Mini Countryman

2017 Mini Countryman Exterior Spyshots
- image 566867

The Mini Countryman is another tiny hatchback with optional all-wheel drive. It arrives with a better look than both the Fiat and the Suzuki, and its base price is competitive at $22,750.

Under the hood, the Countryman starts out with a 121-horsepower four-cylinder, while the S and S All4 models get a 181-horse turbocharged engine. Moving into the wild-and-crazy John Cooper Works model adds a 208-horsepower version of the four-pot. While reaching for that JCW model may seem enticing, allow me to warn you that it runs into the $30,000 range.


Suzuki is like many other manufacturers: it’s great at making cool concept cars, but rarely follows through. Well, this one seems to miss the mark in the “cool” area from some perspectives, so maybe it will actually make it to production. I am really not trying to lash out at Suzuki, but I am growing tired of these lifted up hatchbacks posing as crossovers. Why not just make all-wheel-drive hatchback and leave it at that? No need to go lifting them up and messing with the aerodynamics and driving dynamics. Then again, with the Jimny appealing to a very specific type of customer generally based in the countryside, the production version of the iM-4 could appeal to their more urban relatives.

  • Leave it
    • Looks matter, guys
    • Likely way underpowered
    • Do we really need another crossover hatchback?

Press Release

Suzuki Motor Corporation unveils its world-premiere concept model, the iM-4, at the 85th Geneva Motor Show. Since releasing the LJ series in 1970, Suzuki has been constantly coming up with new ideas in the compact SUV and crossover categories with models such as the first Vitara in 1988 and SX4 in 2006. The iM-4 is our vision for a new compact 4x4 that embodies that DNA while bristling with the latest technology. Its innovativeness, uniqueness and Suzuki’s DNA make it the iconic mini 4x4.

2015 Suzuki iM-4 High Resolution Exterior
- image 620080


The theme of this car: “Shape the Inspiration.” The iM-4 is a personal vehicle that opens up new possibilities and new ways to have fun.

Packaged in a simple yet iconic design, the compact iM-4 is intelligent but tough, offering reliable performance rooted in the Suzuki 4x4 tradition coupled with the latest fuel-saving technology. The minimalist design blends perfectly into the driver’s lifestyle, while its distinctive character brings real inspiration to the daily routine.

With its 4WD system, high minimum ground clearance, and high hip point, the iM-4 is designed to be your credible partner that is easy to drive while also offering performance that lets you confidently drive in snow and on unpaved roads. It has a user-friendly interior and luggage area, and also incorporates cutting-edge technology with a new-generation platform and SHVS mild hybrid system, which deliver excellent fuel consumption with low CO2 emissions.

Design features

This car is designed to be simple yet iconic, pure yet lovable, and innovative yet retro.

2015 Suzuki iM-4 High Resolution Exterior
- image 620081

The unique and minimalist body consists of plain surfaces and round roof, with straight, architectonic lines that give it a beauty and precision. The large-diameter tyres jutting out at the four corners firmly support the body and hint at the car’s power and muscular performance. Dramatic features such as the front fascia with its sunglass-clad look, the helmet-like roof, and the slits on the C-pillars which convey historic Suzuki cars of the past inspire the driver to be creative.

Capsule-like minimalist body that gently embraces the driver.
Plain surfaces and the round roof create a rich expression and give the body simple yet endearing character.
Straight, architectonic lines of the shoulder and glass areas communicate beauty and precision, as does the rectangular motif repeated in features such as the front and rear lower grilles, door mirrors and handles, headlamps, and rear combination lamps.
Sunglass-like front grille and headlamp design coupled with the headlamps’ inner architectureand helmet-like roof give the car a lovable appearance.
Suzuki design essence including blacked-out A- and B-pillars, clamshell bonnet, and front fender garnishes are incorporated throughout the vehicle. The configuration of the area around and behind the C-pillar incorporate slits that pay tribute to historic minicars such as the Fronte Coupé and the first Cervo.
Flared bumpers, 18-inch wheels with five-trapezoid design, and side body moulding of the side body deliver a forceful impression of a 4x4.
Innocent White body colour, which expresses modernity, and a clean appearance that stirs the viewer’s imagination.

2015 Suzuki iM-4 High Resolution Exterior
- image 620082

New environmental technologies

New-generation platform

Suzuki’s new-generation platform is designed to efficiently increase rigidity while reducing weight via a fundamental redesign of the underbody’s structure and also optimising overall vehicle design, including parts mounted on the underbody. This improves fuel efficiency, safety, handling, stability, and NVH performance across the board. Moreover, Suzuki will streamline development by consolidating its existing four platforms to three and modularizing functional components. This will enable bringing out new cars in a more efficient way that can be tailored to fast-changing market demand.

Innovative SHVS mild hybrid system

2015 Suzuki iM-4 High Resolution Exterior
- image 620079

The SHVS (Smart Hybrid Vehicle by Suzuki), Suzuki’s new mild hybrid system incorporating an ISG (integrated starter generator), provides engine power assistance using the motor and achieves efficient power regeneration. The SHVS system used for the iM-4 also features lithium-ion batteries. Coupled with a newly-developed high-efficiency ISG, this regenerative braking system is the perfect hybrid system for a compact car. As well as improving fuel efficiency, it also keeps down the size, weight, and cost.

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