Published on July 4th, 2020 | by Joshua Chin0
2021 Suzuki Across PHEV Destined For Europe
The merry-go-round of badge engineering continues, this time it is Suzuki turn at copying Toyota’s homework with the new Suzuki Across.
To be sold exclusively in the UK and across Europe and is the replacement for Suzuki’s own Grand Vitara SUV, this new Suzuki Across is essentially a Toyota RAV4 Prime underneath and is the first product of a deal signed between the two Japanese automakers in late last year.
In an attempt to move the Across away from its Toyota roots, the front of the Across has been given Suzuki’s family face, with a more rounded design thanks to an enlarged front grille and thinner LED headlights stretched over the donor Toyota body. The rest of the exterior though bears striking resemblance to the RAV4 Prime on which it is based.
The similarities between the two vehicles continue on the inside with the Across sharing near identical dashboard design with the Toyota, save for the steering wheel. This parts-sharing however brings a 9-inch infotainment screen Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard. Key safety features like a pre-collision warning system, lane-keep assist, road sign assist, dynamic cruise control and blindspot monitoring should also be standard in this 5 seat family SUV.
The parts-sharing is further continued to the powertrain. As in the RAV4 Prime plug-in hybrid, the new Suzuki Across will be fitted the sole choice of a 173 hp 2.5 litre petrol motor mated to two electric motors, a 180 hp one at the front and another 54 hp one at the rear. This is great news as it means that when the floor-mounted 18.1 kWh battery pack is charged up, the Across is estimated to have a combined power output of 302 hp while only emitting a paltry 22 g/km of CO2 emissions on the WLPT cycle.
Even more impressive is the range that this PHEV can manage on electric power alone. At a whopping 75 km on pure EV, this figure is the longest range of any PHEV on the market today. Beating even the best-selling PHEV in Europe, the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV by 30 km of electric-only range. Suddenly, a smaller cargo volume than it’s competitors thanks to its huge battery doesn’t seem to be that big of a trade off after all.
Furthermore, carrying over the RAV4’s powertrain means that the Across also features Toyota’s E-Four all wheel drive system. Utilising the electric motor on each axle, torque can be split 100:0 and 80:20 to the front and rear wheels respectively depending on conditions. A special ‘Trail mode’ is also available and acts as an automatic limited slip diff when conditions get slippery.
With the demise of the Suzuki Jimny off-road tonka toy in Europe due to emissions regulations, the Suzuki Across hopes to brings some life back into the European Suzuki lineup and to continue where the Jimny left off in terms of sales. For what its worth too, the RAV4 Prime has received glowing reviews and are flying off the shelves in markets where it is being sold. America especially couldn’t get enough of them. So even if it does carry a Suzuki badge, the new eco-friendly SUV might be the default SUV for European families when it arrives in Europe later this year.
As for the Malaysian market, with Suzuki all but gone from Malaysia it will be highly unlikely that it will be sold here. The RAV4 however has already made its local debut, albeit it non-hybrid form.