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New Suzuki Vitara hybrid on the way

Both 12-volt and 48v mild hybrids and a full-hybrid Vitara all in the pipeline at Suzuki

Suzuki Vitara - front

The Suzuki Vitara will be the Japanese firm’s first full-hybrid model when it launches early next decade, Auto Express can reveal.

Dale Wyatt, Suzuki UK’s managing director, told us electrification will be a key pillar in the brand’s development over the next few years.

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“We’ll see mild hybrid coming through,” he said. “We’ll use 12-volt systems on smaller cars, and 48-volt on the larger models - this will happen up to 2020.”

Asked whether full-hybrid powertrains would feature in the Suzuki line-up later down the line, Wyatt said: “Yes, but on S-Cross and Vitara. Not Swift and Celerio.”

Price is the deciding factor on what form of electrification Suzuki’s future models will use; more expensive models are able absorb the higher cost of hybrid technology. 

“The cost of electrification is around £10,000,” Wyatt added. “People aren’t prepared to pay that kind of money on a [Ford] Fiesta, or a Swift.”

Wyatt also hinted at the possibility of a slimmed-down Suzuki range in the future, however. It would see the company looking to ditch its two model per segment strategy, one rational and one emotional, for a ‘one size fits all’ approach.

He admitted the models pulling customers into showrooms were cars like the funky Ignis, Swift and Vitara, rather than the more practical Celerio, Baleno and S-Cross.

Take a look at the best plug-in hybrid cars on sale right now...

Get the latest electric car news, reviews and analysis on DrivingElectric.com

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Deputy editor

Richard has been part of the team for over a decade. During this time he has covered a huge amount of news and reviews for Auto Express, as well as being the face of Carbuyer and DrivingElectric on Youtube. In his current role as deputy editor, he is now responsible for keeping our content flowing and managing our team of talented writers.

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