1999 Suzuki Grand Vitara 4x4 2.5L from North America
Reliable 4x4 transportation for winter conditions
Check engine light has lit up a couple of times. Just when the new O2 sensor arrives at the shop, the light goes away.
Leaks a little oil from the main seal. Would get it fixed, but the labor costs are outrageous, so I just put up with it.
When I bought it, it had a lot of miles, and was often towed behind an RV. Was told that when towed, the odometer would register those miles. So it may indicate more miles than what have actually been driven.
Have driven it hard in the two years I've owned it, and have really grown to love it. Not very comfortable, or very good on gas mileage, but when I've needed a reliable 4 wheel drive vehicle, it's done great.
Back seat is short on leg room and the cabin feels small. But for my job doing field service work, it's been a perfect vehicle.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 1st March, 2011
It was a great vehicle, and with over 325,000 trouble free miles, I couldn't have been any happier, but a few days ago my Grand Vitara had an engine fire. I was in the middle of a two hour drive and stopped at a rest area. When I came out of the rest room, I noticed smoke coming out from under the hood; the top of the engine was on fire. Luckily a couple of truckers there had fire extinguishers, so only the engine and hood were severely damaged.
Still, the expense of repair is more than the vehicle is worth, so it's "totaled". Doing a bit of research, I've found that there was a recall hazard alert several years ago relating to a fuel system problem that caused engine fires. Not sure if this would apply at all, given the fact that this was a fourteen year old vehicle with over 300,000 miles.
Would STRONGLY recommend if anyone has an older GV, that you get the fuel system checked. I wasn't in my vehicle when the fire started, and no one got hurt, but next time I might not be so lucky.