2013 Suzuki Grand Vitara Review
The 2013 Suzuki Grand Vitara offers more standard features and better off-road capability than most compact SUVs, test drivers say, but they dislike its underwhelming performance and outdated styling.
This is the last model year for Suzuki automobiles in the U.S., which may pose problems for owners down the road. One reviewer says that resale values could suffer, while maintenance and parts availability could also be affected.
The 2013 Grand Vitara comes with a four-cylinder engine, and most automotive critics agree that it doesn’t have the power or refinement needed to be competitive within the class. A five-speed manual transmission is standard, while higher trims come with a four-speed automatic. Most test drivers say that the Suzuki Grand Vitara could benefit from a transmission with more gears, which could improve power and fuel economy. Still, one reviewer writes that the automatic transmission is surprisingly responsive. The 2013 Grand Vitara gets up to 19/26 mpg city/highway, which is worse than SUVs like the Chevrolet Equinox and Honda CR-V. Additionally, the Grand Vitara's safety score is easily beat by many higher-ranking SUVs. Most reviewers appreciate the Grand Vitara’s precise steering and tight turning radius. An optional four-wheel drive system also earns praise, as test drivers write that it makes the Grand Vitara more capable off-road than most competitors. However, many critics note that the Grand Vitara lacks the composed handling and car-like ride you’ll find in crossovers like the Kia Sportage.
While auto writers note that the Suzuki Grand Vitara comes with more standard features than most affordable compact SUVs, they also say that its cabin design and materials look a bit outdated. Still, most say that the audio and climate controls are easy to use, and that the front seats are comfortable. The bulk of test drivers note that the Grand Vitara offers a useful amount of cargo space, but they also write that Grand Vitara’s rear cargo door swings open sideways, and requires more space to operate than the liftgates found on SUVs like the Mazda CX-5. The Grand Vitara’s standard features include automatic climate control, a touch-screen navigation system and a four-speaker stereo with Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity and a USB port. Options and features available on higher trims include a sunroof, push-button start, cruise control, a backup camera and an upgraded stereo.
- "Suzuki's exit from the U.S. market could be problematic for owners when it comes to maintenance, even though the company promises to honor warranties and maintain parts inventories. The brand's already mediocre resale values will certainly be affected as well." -- Consumer Guide
- "In some aspects, the Grand Vitara still holds appeal. Standard features include automatic climate control and a navigation system; those are usually optional extras for a small crossover. The Suzuki further distinguishes itself with a decent amount of off-road capability and a generous 7-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty." -- Edmunds (2012)
- "The Grand Vitara lacks the power, fuel economy, sophistication and dealer network of competitors such as the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, Ford Escape, Subaru Forester and Kia Sportage." -- Kelley Blue Book (2012)
- "As it stands, the Grand Vitara is in limbo between comfy crossover and tough truck. It has the potential to excel being at either one, but it's not quite there." -- Motor Trend (2012)
Other SUVs to Consider
The Subaru Forester doesn’t come standard with navigation, but it does come with all-wheel drive, which costs extra on the Grand Vitara. Additionally, reviewers love the Forester’s sporty handling and spacious interior.
If you’re looking for an SUV with more modern styling inside and out, consider the Kia Sportage. In addition to its good looks, the Sportage pleases reviewers with its car-like handling and long list of standard features.
Details: 2013 Suzuki Grand Vitara
The 2013 Suzuki Grand Vitara seats five and comes with rear-wheel drive. A 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and a five-speed manual transmission are standard. All- and four-wheel drive systems are optional on higher trims. The Grand Vitara comes in three trims: base, Premium and Limited. Higher trims add to the Grand Vitara’s list of interior features, and come with a four-speed automatic transmission as standard equipment. For 2013, the Grand Vitara gains an updated navigation system with Bluetooth and a USB port, as well as an optional rearview camera, but is otherwise unchanged. As a result, this overview uses applicable research and reviews from 2009 through 2012, as well as the current model year.