The majority of concept cars produced by major carmakers are destined to exist solely for the duration of a single motor show. Some are luckier, however, and come back again a year or two later in the form of a primordial idea for a production model. Very few, with the exception of a few historic examples by famous coachbuilders, will ever go on to have a life of their own and continue to evolve.

This is the case with the Kizashi concept presented in September at Frankfurt which, just over a month later, returned at the Tokyo motor show in such a revised and improved form that it was deemed worthy of a new name – Kizashi 2.

This can mean one of two things: either that an initially sceptical Suzuki was so impressed (perhaps even surprised) by the glowing reception the static model received in Germany that it decided to tweak and hone it to see just how far it could go, or that the Japanese brand’s success in the small 4×4 market has convinced it that it is ready to venture into the increasingly competitive and crowded premium D-segment with something truly different, and that the Kizashi is a declaration of this intent. If the latter is true, then the car is a statement of the brand’s strategic ambitions, and at Tokyo, Suzuki openly spoke about its “decision to compete in a new arena”.

The article continues in Auto & Design no. 168

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