We have wanted a Jimny for several years, so we traded a 1.2 Corsa against one when it came into a local Vauxhall dealer in February 2004. This one came with many extras, alloy wheels, colour coded front bull bar, front foglights, aluminium sill covers, chrome light trims and a driver's arm rest. These extras really finish the car off.
The car drives well, but is very bouncy over anything other than mirror smooth road surfaces. The engine seems to struggle and is always sounding like it works hard. I must say that they drive immeasurable better than any Vitara I have driven (3/5 door, hard and soft top). The Vitara is truly AWFUL. You can feel the chassis and body twisting over road undulations, something the Jimny does not do. I would rather drive the Jimny any day.
Despite it sounding like it's working hard under there, the engine is fairly nippy, though it doesn't like going over 70mph.
The roof is fiddly to take down and put back up, though it's great to drive when it is down.
I haven't yet put it through any serious off-road work, though what it has done it's done very well.
Not great build quality, the old thing of shiny plastics, but it is fairly comfortable for front seat passengers. Not great access to the rear and the front seats don't have a 'memory function' so whenever anyone gets in or out of the rear, you have to spend 5 minutes re-adjusting them again.