Tested: 2022 Suzuki Jimny Rhino Edition

“The Jimny is perfect, but keep a set of extra headlight bulbs close by.”

The Suzuki Jimny brand has been with us since the 1970’s. Along with models like the Swift, the Jimny is a prime example of Suzuki’s motto of creating quirky and fun, yet sensible cars. Since the launch of the fourth generation Jimny in 2018, I made no secret of my ambitions to own one myself.

Four years after that impulsive decision in 2018, I decided to use the test with the new heritage “Rhino” edition as the last fence-sitting moment, and firm up my ambitions to purchase a Jimny. Should I grow tired of the car after three days, I would have closure. Should the opposite occur, I would continue my search in all earnest.

The new Rhino Edition, in the automatic 1.5 litre GLX variant, arrived in a flashy white colour, albeit with a heritage kit, reminding onlookers of the initial SJ-series, some 50 years ago. This kit included the Suzuki heritage grille, Rhino decals, red mud flaps, rain and wind deflectors, as well as a rhino-branded spare wheel cover. Each of these can also be ordered separately from Suzuki (except for the Rhino decals, which comes with the complete package).

Simultaneously with the launch of the Rhino Edition aesthetics, the GL model was also launched to slot in between the GA and GLX models. With the exact same 4×4 capabilities as both the GA and GLX, as well as the same 1.5 litre K15B petrol engine (75kW and 130Nm), the GL would be a more budget-friendly version of the GLX.

The GL was therefore manufactured for Jimny fans, who do not really care for the interior aesthetics, such as the infotainment touchscreen, cruise control, auto climate control, LED headlights, and a rear cabin storage compartment or interior light. Rather the GL would be equipped with a Bluetooth radio, and halogen headlights, whilst keeping the 15-inch alloy wheels of the GLX.

In addition to the GA model, it would also be equipped with front fog lights, steering-mounted controls, remote central locking and electric windows and side mirrors.

The exterior differences between the GLX and GL are therefore almost unrecognisable, whilst the differences might become more apparent on the inside.

Yet, Suzuki listened to its customers, reduced the price of the GL by R20 000 (compared to the GLX), and launched an equally capable 4×4, with less aesthetics.

All this results in more Jimnies being on the road, plus an almost tiring, yet fun activity of flashing one’s headlights as you pass another Jimny, or to simply find other Jimnies in a parking lot, parking next to it, photographing the pair, and following the obligatory process of posting the result on socials under the #JimnyParkingRules hashtag.

I therefore foresee a problem when attending the #JimnyGathering from 22 – 24 September 2023, in Clarens, with my recently purchased GLX Jimny. To break the World Record of the most Jimnies in one central location, one might require an extra pair of headlight bulbs, whilst the Socials will be flooded with #JimnyParkingRules content.

I for one cannot wait. In fact, we are already planning our trial test, as we aim to take the road to Clarens in December en route to Skukuza and the Wild Coast. Be prepared as I will be flashing my headlights.

Jimny prices (November 2022):

  • 1.5 GA Manual:                                  R 334 900 (2 year / 30 000km servisse plan)
  • 1.5 GL 5-speed Manual:                   R356 900
  • 1.5 GL 4-speed Automatic:             R378 900
  • 1.5 GLX 5-speed Manual:                R377 900
  • 1.5 GLX 4-speed Automatic:           R399 900

Each model, except for the GA derivative, will be sold with a 5 year / 200 000km promotional warranty, and a 4 year / 60 000km service plan.” 

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