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In-depth reviews

Suzuki Vitara - Practicality, comfort and boot space

The Suzuki Vitara is practical enough, although there are more versatile small SUVs around

Overall Auto Express Rating

3.0 out of 5

Practicality, comfort and boot space Rating

3.5 out of 5

Price
£25,449 to £30,999
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Dimensions

Length

4,175mm

Width

1,775mm

Height

1,610mm

Number of seats

5

Boot space 

362 litres (1.4 Boosterjet), 298 litres (1.5 Hybrid)

As an all-seasons car, the four-wheel-drive version of the Vitara is a practical choice – it might not climb a mountain or cross a river like the Land Rover Defender, or even the old Vitara, but it’s perfectly capable of crossing a muddy field or finding traction on icy roads where two-wheel-drive cars would scrabble for grip.

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The front-driven versions are less versatile, but as with other crossover models you get a commanding, SUV-style view of the road ahead, and for many drivers, the greater fuel efficiency the 2WD system offers will outweigh the frequency that four-wheel drive will be needed.

Unlike previous Vitara generations, there’s no three-door version, so all models are equally practical. It’s easy for drivers to get comfortable, thanks to the wide range of seat and steering wheel adjustments. The reasonably thin roof pillars and large door mirrors help with visibility, but if you need extra help, then the mid-range SZ-T adds a reversing camera, and the top-of-the-range SZ5 comes with front and rear parking sensors.

The front doors have large storage bins, although the glove box is a bit on the small side.

Size

Because it’s 125mm shorter overall (with a 100mm shorter wheelbase) than the Suzuki S-Cross, the Suzuki Vitara doesn’t have the same amount of interior space, but it's still a spacious family car.

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At 4,175mm long, 1,775mm wide and 1,610mm tall, the Vitara is slightly bigger than the Nissan Juke (4,135mm x 1,765mm x 1,565mm) in all directions.

Leg room, head room & passenger space

The high-sided design means there’s lots of rear headroom. Legroom is generous enough for all but the tallest adults.

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If you want to emphasise the feeling of space, you can opt for a panoramic roof with a large 560mm opening, although on our test car, it suffered an irritating rattle (early test cars sometimes have this issue). The sunroof impacts headroom in the rear seats – not an issue if you mainly carry children, but six-footers will find it a problem. 

As with most small SUVs, two ISOFIX child seat mounting points are provided on the rear seats' outer positions.

Boot

A boot capacity of just 362 litres (increasing to 645 litres with the rear seats folded) is fairly small for a car of this size. The 1.5 Hybrid has an even smaller boot of 289 litres due to the hybrid system taking up space, making it more capacious than a supermini. Many rivals, such as the SEAT Arona, Renault Captur, and Peugeot 2008, are all capable of hauling more luggage.  

At least it’s a well-thought-out shape, though – square, with a wide opening and a moveable boot floor to bring the loading area level with the boot lip. It also provides an area to store items out of sight.

Towing

The Suzuki Vitara has a modest 1,200kg maximum braked trailer towing capacity compared to some small SUVs. Dedicated caravan types must go for the four-wheel drive ‘4Motion’ Volkswagen T-Roc, which can tow up to 1,700kg in both 2.0-litre petrol and diesel forms.

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Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    1.4 Boosterjet 48V Hybrid SZ-T 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £25,449

Most Economical

  • Name
    1.5 Hybrid SZ-T 5dr AGS
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £27,199

Fastest

  • Name
    1.4 Boosterjet 48V Hybrid SZ-T 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £25,449
Online Reviews Editor

Max looks after the reviews on the Auto Express website. He’s been a motoring journalist since 2017 and has written for Autocar, What Car?, Piston Heads, DrivingElectric, Carbuyer, Electrifying, and Good Motoring Magazine.

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