QUIET IN THE BACK

BEING SMALL HELPS KEEP REAR-SEAT MOANING TO A MINIMUM

FELIPE UBILLA

SUZUKI JIMNY

Price as tested: $24,490

This month: 863km @ 7.7L/100km

PATIENCE IS a virtue Ė a phrase someone far wiser than me once stated, and itís one I try to follow. Such has been my experience this first month with the Jimny, biding my time as it does the rounds fulfilling everyoneís curiosity and starring in segments for WhichCar TV. The attention it garners is ridiculous!

Now, with all the limelight subsiding, Iíve finally been able to spend some quality time in the tiny Suzuki.

As a daily, the Jimny would certainly not be my first choice. Far from it, actually. While being able to accommodate two adults in the front, the rear is pretty much useless for fullsized humans.

Lucky for me, then, that the only two passengers I have to chauffeur on a regular basis are both under five feet tall.

When I finally introduced the car to my little girls, it was met with cries of delight and plenty of inquisitiveness. Its bright colour, toy-like shape and dimensions ticked several boxes for them. As did the high riding position, thanks to the booster seats, and the large windows.

Itís now been labelled ďthe bouncy carĒ by the girls, due to the softly sprung suspension. The kids quite happily clamber in and out without much assistance other than clipping on seatbelts.

The one thing that has become a nuisance is swapping the booster seats in and out of the Jimny Ė thereís no graceful way of reaching for them and installing/releasing the seats. The anchor points are on the edge of the cargo space, compromising access. Not that thereís much to access Ė a satchel and coat is probably all youíre going to be able to fit in with the seats up. Taking the girls to school and daycare sees us storing backpacks on the front passenger seat, which limits the distance it can be moved forward.

The girls do miss out on air-con vents, but having such a small cabin hopefully equates to quick heating going into the colder months.

I have to admit, I was apprehensive about how the Jimny would cope with my daily driving requirements. But thus far itís done a great job running around our neighbourhood, with the only sour point being the girls trying to decide if itís yellow or green. Iím letting them sort this one out.

FELIPE UBILLA