1992 Suzuki Sidekick Reviews

1992 Suzuki Sidekick 1.6 from North America

Model year1992
Year of manufacture1992
First year of ownership2008
Most recent year of ownership2008
Engine and transmission 1.6 Automatic
Performance marks 3 / 10
Reliability marks 6 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Dealer Service marks 0 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
4.6 / 10
Distance when acquired136000 kilometres
Most recent distance136000 kilometres

Faults:

There seems to be an oil leak. I've heard that this is common in the Sidekicks. I need to know how to fix this.

General Comments:

I'm looking forward to ripping it up this summer in my Sidekick. I hope to learn how to fix it on my own.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th December, 2008

14th Nov 2012, 20:50

I have a 93 Suzuki Sidekick 4x4. Need a new transmission, hopefully used, and need it put in. Where can I get it done? I live in Kernersville N.Carolina. I need the best price for trans and labor.

1992 Suzuki Sidekick JLX 1.6L from North America

Year of manufacture1992
First year of ownership1998
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 1.6L Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.0 / 10
Distance when acquired38000 miles
Most recent distance123000 miles
Previous carMitsubishi Mirage

Summary:

Great little Made in Japan Truck

Faults:

The radiator top cracked (plastic) at about 118000 miles. Quick and easy to replace. The drivers door electric window mechanism failed. Small plastic parts became brittle, broke and let cable off its track. One small spot on the firewall where the rust has made a hole. Occasionally it starts pinging and then stops. Never could figure out the cause. The 11 gallon gas tank is a bit on the small side.

General Comments:

This little truck goes off road and has no problem. It can do a lot more than I ever expected. Good ground clearance. We average about 24 miles per gallon.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 8th September, 2004

9th Sep 2004, 07:20

Japan, eh? Man, I always wondered where those things were made.

21st Aug 2005, 10:06

I happen to be an owner of a 92 Sidekick JLX, with 182,000 miles. It had 120,000 when I acquired it through divorce, and although I have replaced a few things on it, I don't think that it has been too far above the standard "wear and tear" of a 13 year old truck. I have taken it out driving on sand dunes and in mud, short of the stock clearance, I have not gotten it stuck yet. It has been very reliable, but they do require a lot of preventative maint. Who knows, I may end up putting another 100,000 on it before I finally part with it...

29th Nov 2005, 12:46

I recently purchased a 1993 JLX from an impound lot for $336. It has 232,000+ miles. It was dirty and oily and looked like it had been ridden hard with no maintenance. After making a key and changing out a main 60A fuse, it started right up and has been running great since. Idles better than my new Chevy.

My daughter calls it "Herbie" because it seemed to come back to life after pumping up the tires and cleaning it up. I wouldn't be surprised to get another 232,000 miles out of it.

16th Nov 2009, 01:05

So I just bought a 92 Zuke Sidekick 4 door and I'm looking for fender parts... like for instance those plastic pieces under the doors.

1992 Suzuki Sidekick JX 1.6L 16 vavle SOHC from North America

Year of manufacture1992
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 1.6L 16 vavle SOHC Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.8 / 10
Distance when acquired60000 miles
Most recent distance69500 miles
Previous carSuzuki Sidekick

Summary:

A real bargain for the mini SUV market

Faults:

Exhaust system replaced and Exhaust Manifold cracked At 69,000 miles. Rear door handle rusted and no longer functioned. I searched many salvage yards and found that all that still had the maifolds intact all suffered from the same cracks as mine. I've also been unable to locate the part anywhere other that the overpriced dealership.

General Comments:

Wonderful little SUV. Handles like a dream, a little bouncy, but hey it's a 4-wheeler. I'm 6'1" tall and am more comfortable in this little 4x4 than in my friends Xterra. Would like Suzuki to make parts a little easier to find without paying the big dealer price tag. And try to make good the very apparent problem with the exhaust manifold cracking.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd May, 2003

1992 Suzuki Sidekick JLX 1.6 liter from North America

Year of manufacture1992
First year of ownership2002
Most recent year of ownership2002
Engine and transmission 1.6 liter Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.8 / 10
Distance when acquired56000 miles
Most recent distance76500 miles
Previous carHonda Civic

Summary:

Minor quirks n all... I love it!!!

Faults:

Needs to have the exhaust system replaced.

First problem, part of the exhaust pipe broke off from it's hanger. There was actually a hole, from being rusted out. Most likely due to how little it was driven and the area it was from. I got it welded back on for $20, so far still holding up.

Week before last, the catalyic converter plugged up causing the manifold to crack. I had the same thing happen to my previous 1995 Suzuki Sidekick I owned at 50,000 miles. Except then, it only blew a gasket and not cracked the manifold.

Back to this one, I lost the tailpipe just after the muffler, and in that general area under the truck there is lots of rusting of the exhaust pipe. When I get the manifold fixed, I'm just going to replace the whole exhaust piping and muffler.

I was quoted just over $300 for labor, fixed manifold, catalyic converter, and muffler.

It also seems that it getting harder to shift the gears, esp hard to put it back into first gear after coming to a stop. My other Sidekick needed a new clutch at about 50,000 miles, transmission went out at 72,000. I had to let it go since I didn't have the $$$ to fix it at the time.

The only other problem I have is that the engine tends to die unless you keep the gas pedal pressed. It only does it every so often, my other one did that also. I had took the previous one to the dealer under warranty and they said they could not figure out the problem. After I recover from the exhaust ordeal, I will do a full tune up, new plugs, wires, distributor cap and rotor, O-2 sensor, PCV valve and probably the fuel filter. Hopefully that should help it run good for a long time.

When I bought this one, the electric door locks didn't work. I'll get around to fixing them sooner or later.

General Comments:

I love the Sidekick... even thought I had the transmission failure in the other one, I wouldn't have gotten rid of it if I had the $$$ to fix it.

When I bought the first one, I had almost given up on them because the first few models I had driven were the 4 Door JX models. They rode terrible. I didn't realize it at the time that there was a difference, but I happend to test drive a JLX model and I fell in love.

The JLX's are great, they drive really well, fun to take off road and get dirty, and a lot of fun to drive in general. You will have to fight the wind, but just keep your wits about you and don't have any knee jerk reactions and you should be just fine. I even take freeway on/off ramps that caution "25 MPH" at 45 to 50 MPH with no sign of tipping. No it isn't a sports car, but it can be quite zippy with some driver confidence.

As always could use more power, but with the new exhaust system, I expect some performance gains.

One last thing, I've twice had the top of the line models, the JLX's, but neither have came with air conditioning. Go figure.

I recommend getting one, be prepared for a few minor quirks, but over all a great vehicle :D.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd October, 2002

25th Feb 2004, 20:57

In response to your problem,"having to rev the gas to keep engine from dying", check the following. My 1996 JX 5 speed did the same thing. I was told to replace the EGR valve, (Exhaust Recirculating Valve). This cost around $80. However if the diaphragm is not torn, simply loosen two bolts, remove valve, clean out carbon with brake cleaner and a battery terminal brush, and replace with new gasket paper. Also note that the do-it-your manual states that the service engine light automatically comes on @ 50,000 / 80,000 /and 100,000 miles. the reset switch, if nothing is wrong, is located under the dash along the steering column.

1992 Suzuki Sidekick JLX 2-door 1.6 8-valve from North America

Year of manufacture1992
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 1.6 8-valve Automatic
Performance marks 5 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 3 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.4 / 10
Distance when acquired132000 kilometres
Most recent distance133000 kilometres
Previous carSuzuki Swift

Summary:

Cheap and cheerful off-roader

Faults:

I've only had this Zuke a couple of weeks and nothing has broken. I expect to get a lot of k's out of this little truck.

However, being a 9-year-old it's exhibiting some classic Zuke traits:

- Rusting around the bottom of the doors and around stone chips. There's not much you can do about the doors, but if you touch up the chips you can avoid the spread of body rot.

- The 80hp 1.6 8-valve engine mated with an automatic has great low-end torque and is punchy in town, but on the highway you will want the auto with overdrive or the 5-speed manual.

- This engine has an insatiable thirst for fuel.

- There is some drive-line vibration at highway speeds, but I think it can be cured with a professional 4-wheel alignment and balance. I'll find out shortly.

General Comments:

The Sidekick is at its best in off-road situations and booting around town. On the highway its noise, vibration and harshness may put you off.

Balance this off against the more than reasonable purchase price.

I have not driven a Vitara but one might assume that it's much more freeway-friendly.

On a dollar-per-kilometre basis, Zukes are pretty much unbeatable.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th March, 2001

31st May 2001, 05:34

Help

The idle on my Suzuki x90 at times will drop to 200 or 300 hundred rpm. The dealer has offered no cure, anyone had this problem?

d11ohio@aol.com

15th Jun 2001, 20:44

Just bought a 1992 JX Sidekick for my 18 year old and I'm concerned about the rolling. Can anyone give me some info or are there statistics on this? Help anyone.

Average review marks: 7.7 / 10, based on 5 reviews