Sunday, January 24, 2010
2011 Suzuki Kizashi: Reader Spies Mazda6 Sedan Rival in Virginia
Peter Mcabe is the latest addition to our list of eagle-eyed Carscoop readers that have managed to bag a set of spy shots of a future model. The quick-witted reader spotted a camouflaged prototype of the 2011 Suzuki Kizashi sedan parked behind the Olive Garden restaurant off of Midlothian Turnpike, in Richmond, Virginia. The Kizashi, which was wrongly reported dead by Japanese media earlier this year, is based on the Kizashi 3 concept car shown at the New York auto show in 2008.
Sadly, as we suspected upon seeing the official sketches of the Kizashi that were registered by Suzuki at the European trademark office in 2008, the mid-size sedan's appearance looks to be severely toned down compared to the head-turning concept.
The Kizashi 3 prototype had an all-new, 300HP 3.6-liter, naturally-aspirated V6 engine with power delivered through a six-speed automatic transmission to all four wheels. The road-going model will most likely be offered with a detuned version of the V6 as well as an inline four-cylinder engine producing somewhere north of 150 horsepower, the latter driving the front-wheels.
In North America, the Kizashi will compete against the likes of the Chevrolet Malibu, Toyota Camry, Honda Accord and Mazda6 sedans. In accordance to the latest reports, the Kizashi will hit U.S. showrooms by the end of year, meaning that we'll probably see it making its global premiere at a major international motorshow this fall, perhaps at the Tokyo Salon in October.
Suzuki has yet to confirm when (and if) the Kizashi will reach European shores, but if it does, the Japanese automaker will have to enhance the sedan's lineup with smaller sized gasoline and diesel engines if it wants to rival family sedans like the Opel Insignia, Toyota Avensis and Citroen C5.