A very nicely presented example of the increasingly rare MKI Suzuki Vitara
Eye-catching in its original Cassis Red Pearl over Silver two-tone livery
Having covered less than 2,000 miles a year on average, predominantly under one keeper
In a move most probably driven by Suzuki’s marketing department, the Vitara become the first compact, lifestyle orientated small SUV when it was revealed to the world in 1988. The idea seemed to be to add a bit of additional sophistication and refinement to a range consisting of the erstwhile little Jimny / SJ mini mud plugger. The Vitara boasted a chunky separate chassis frame, long coil springs all round and selectable four-wheel drive via a two-speed transfer box. The “blistered” wings lent the little Suzuki a purposeful, yet fun, demeanour that proved popular.
Our example appears to be one of those rare “time-warp” specials from the last year of Vitara availability in the UK. The Vitara is a rare sight today with only around 200 in this configuration still on the road today. Examples in this highly original and low mileage condition, however, remain in only vanishingly small numbers.
The History and Paperwork
This Vitara was one of the models built in Spain by Santana Motors SA
Our car was supplied new in the UK in December 2000
The car was sold to its first owner by Colin Appleyard Suzuki of Keighley
The first owner paid the princely sum of £5,000 for the car at that point
According to accompanying paperwork, the car was still with its original owner in 2019
The current owner acquired the car in January 2023 to become only its third owner
The Vitara comes with a great level of supporting paperwork
This includes the current V5 in the name of the owner
The current MoT is present in hard copy
This is advisory free and valid until December 2023
A large number of earlier MoTs are on hand, validating the very low mileage
A good number of invoices are included detailing work undertaken
The interior is in excellent original condition throughout
Trimmed in varying shades of grey cloth and vinyl
A relatively sparse and delightfully utilitarian cabin befitting a four-wheel drive
The high-backed front seats are finished in a grey velour material
These feature large, foam headrests for safety and comfort
The front seats fold forward to provide access to the rear cabin
The rear cabin is furnished with two individual seats rendering the car a four-seater
These are identically trimmed to the fronts and are in equally fine condition
Carpets are in a contrasting grey hue and appear to be original and in fine fettle
Likewise, the headlining which is clean and correct
Door cards and side panels are finished in hard wearing grey vinyl
A simple instrument binnacle sits behind the four spoke grey steering wheel
The centre console houses the heater controls and a radio / cassette head unit
The controls for the high / low range gear box are situated between the front seats
The luggage compartment is accessed via a side hinged rear hatch
This is carpeted in grey and can be easily enlarged by folding one or both rear seats
This example is finished in eye-catching Cassis Red Pearl over Silver
This makes for a compelling combination and helps accentuate the Vitara’s shape
The Vitara’s external presentation is entirely original
This includes the various large “4U2” stickers and original Vitara badging
The paint condition is very good overall and believed to be original
Likewise, the bodywork appears very sound with symmetrical and tight panel gaps
Given the car’s age there is inevitably some minor scuffs and scratches
These have been captured by our photographer for your review
The Vitara sits on original 15-inch, five spoke Suzuki alloy wheels
These appear to be in very good order with no scuffs or dings noted
These are shod with a matching set of quality Bridgestone Deuler HT tyres
The front wheels are fitted with locking hubs
The Vitara was propelled by a 1.6L in-line four petrol engine
Rated at around 80 bhp in original form
Power is delivered via a five-speed manual gearbox
There is a low range box allowing the driver to select 2 or 4 wheel drive and low range
Judging by the accompanying paperwork, our Vitara has been well cared for
There is plenty of invoices detailing regular, routine maintenance
Potential buyers should also factor in the very low, original mileage of this example
It is no surprise then that the Vitara is understood to be in fine mechanical condition
The under-bonnet presentation is in keeping with a car of this age
There is some potential for further improvements to be made here if required
The underside also looks appropriate to this car’s history
Some further futureproofing may be possible by weather treating the underside
This is one of those “when did you last see one?” cars. A darling of the 80’s and 90’s motoring landscape which has since passed into relative obscurity. As a result, this is certainly a car which will attract admiring and interested stares from passers-by and initiate petrol forecourt conversations in equal measure. These are relatively simple and frugal vehicles too which should allow owners to enjoy a year 2000 four-wheel drive revival at modest cost.
This Vitara is a great example. It’s a very honest car in a thoroughly decent and, most importantly, original condition. It has covered miniscule miles in the hands, mostly, of its original owner. It, clearly, has a lot of life left in it and would be the perfect car in which to enjoy a summer of classic car shows and events at a very reasonable overall cost.
Notice to bidders
This item is sold on an ‘As is Where is’ basis. The condition of this item is the opinion of the seller and may differ from your own opinion. Photos and listing descriptions are for guidance purposes only*.** Car & Classic do not warrant listing accuracy. Full inspection is recommended. Viewings are at the seller’s discretion. Buyer is responsible for delivery and collection of any item purchased.*
UK-registered cars and motorbikes on Car & Classic are run through an online HPI check. On the HPI report, this vehicle shows no insurance database markers for damage or theft. It is currently not covered by a finance agreement.
A non-refundable buyer’s deposit is payable on this item, refer to FAQs and T&Cs for the applicable percentage.
Car & Classic's secure payment system protects buyers and sellers. At the end of the auction, the winning bidder transfers payment into a third-party escrow account. Once the transfer of the vehicle is complete, both parties confirm they are happy with the sale and the money is released to the seller.
2000 Suzuki Vitara JX 4U2 (MKI)
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