Suzuki will most likely discontinue its mid-size Kizashi sedan because of poor sales, said the company’s Australian managing director, Masaaki Kato. According to the Japanese brand’s executive, the sedan was compromised by poor timing, as the car was introduced just before the global financial crisis hit the United States in 2009.
“That’s my headache, Kizashi was a very unlucky car. We had so many arguments about the question: how to handle Kizashi. At that time, frankly speaking, we should not have introduced the car into the market in 2009,” Masaaki Kato told Australia’s Drive.
“But you see, we made a big investment to develop this car… After heavy and hard discussion, we decided to introduce this Kizashi,” Kato added. The executive also said Suzuki started work on a turbocharged performance Kizashi and planned V6 models and a Kizashi wagon, but all the plans “completely disappeared.”
Add to that the fact that Suzuki pulled out of the U.S. market in 2012 and the future of the Kizashi doesn’t look bright at all. Furthermore, the failure of Suzuki’s agreement with VW to develop cars for emerging markets means the company will have to design those cars on its own and will therefore lack funds for larger models like the Kizashi.
All in all, Kato concluded a new generation Kizashi could be too much investment for too little return.
However, unlucky circumstances cannot take all the blame for the Kizashi’s sales struggle. The sedan’s steep price (AU$ 29,990 in Australia/€26,990 in Germany) and the availability of only one engine (a thirsty 176hp/178PS 2.4-liter gasoline unit) are also important factors too in the Kizashi’s lack of success.
By Dan Mihalascu