Suzuki is among the biggest blue-chip Japanese automakers in the world. The company is headquartered in Hamamatsu, Japan, and creates a wide range of products, including automobiles, internal combustion engines, motorcycles, ATVs and outboard motors. Globally, Suzuki is ranked 10th for sales volume of automobiles, but domestically it is ranked third, making it one of the biggest players in the vast automotive world.
Among their popular JDM models are cars like the Suzuki Landy and the Suzuki Every Landy, MPV cars that boast great design with typical high-quality Japanese engineering and are consistently well received by UK buyers.
Suzuki’s founder was Michio Suzuki, who in 1909 founded the company initially as the Suzuki Loom Works. The company’s first riches and commercial success was found in their weaving looms, which were sold to producers in Japan’s silk industry. This line of business continued for three decades, including some successful export models.
Michio Suzuki knew that it wasn’t good to be so dependent on a single product, and so he explored other sectors that Suzuki may delve into to diversify their interests. Beginning in 1937, Suzuki embarked on their first automotive project, which yielded some very promising prototype cars. The team at Suzuki produced a liquid-cooled, four-stroke, four-cylinder 13hp engine, which at the time was incredibly original — a sign of things to come.
As with his automotive contemporaries, Suzuki’s company development was overshadowed by the events of the Second World War, when all plans had to be put on hold to support the war effort. After the war, perhaps discouraged by Japan’s defeat and lack of material resources, returned to his loom business. He was quickly shocked back into diversifying the company, however, when the cotton industry caved in 1951.
Power Free to Suzulight
Suzuki’s heritage lies more firmly in the world of motorcycles than cars, in fact. The first engine they produced was the highly successful “clip-on” design called the Power Free. It was attached to bicycles to make them more efficient, and even able to run powered by the engine alone.
Success with motorcycles led the company to begin its foray into the world of automobiles. In 1955 they came up with the Suzuki Suzulight, which featured front-wheel drive, four-wheel independent suspension and rack-and-pinion steering — features not commonplace in the rest of the automotive world until decades later.
Building to today’s Suzuki
Building on their early successes, the now-named Suzuki Motor Corporation became its own entity, separate from the original loom company, and enjoyed international success and a growing reputation for both automobiles and motorcycles. Winning such prestigious events as the Isle of Man TT in 1962 and 1963 helped to establish the company in the hearts and minds of drivers and automotive enthusiasts around the world. Suzuki car models like the Swift hatchback, and Jimny SUV have helped perpetuate the company’s success story, especially in Europe where Japan’s talent for compact design and efficient fuel consumption are eagerly welcomed.
Today, Suzuki employs some 45,000 people, and operates 35 production facilities in 23 countries, as well as 133 distributors in 192 countries. Beyond their ever-popular international catalogue, one can find a treasure trove of models in the JDM category.
Popular Suzuki JDM Choices
When you consider the wildly popular nature of Suzuki’s motorcycle exploits, as well as the popularity of models like the Swift hatchback and Jimny SUV, it’s surprising to learn that some of the best JDM choices for Suzuki are neither TT-race motorbikes or nifty hatchbacks.
Models like the Landy and Every Landy models are also great because they give you an entire ideal package for the UK market. Instead of feeling the need to choose between something comfortable but incredibly large, or small yet functional, you can get all of it wrapped into one great car like the Suzuki Every Landy.
The Suzuki brand has been forged in the heat of crisis and competition, giving it an edge of adaptability, dynamism and quality that has helped it become a fan favourite among JDM enthusiasts. Let’s delve a bit deeper into what makes Suzuki cars so appealing in the first place:
Why do people love Suzuki?
There are several interesting factors behind people’s love for this iconic Japanese brand. Despite having a tricky relationship with other auto giants like Volkswagen over the years, the company has stayed strong and won many admirers. What is it they love?
1. A Suzuki will surprise you
While the name Suzuki is very well known around the world, many people likely couldn’t tell you a great deal about their range. The company’s marketing hasn’t been as far-reaching or as pervasive in the imagination as fellow Japanese rivals such as Toyota (“The car in front…”) and Mazda (“Zoom, zoom, zoom!”). And yet, drivers everywhere remark how great their Suzuki was until they finally came to drive it.
Drivers of the Every Landy, for example, may first see a somewhat simple design concept, but when they drive it, they feel the quality of the build, dependability of the engineering and more. This brings us neatly to the next thing people love about this brand.
2. Suzuki does “simple” best of all
Where many car companies (including some Japanese competitors in the current climate) opt to complicate their car’s build or styling, Suzuki continues to rely on a kind of almost homely simplicity that appeals to a driver’s more fundamental desire. Where the more provocative designs of Nissan or Mazda divide opinion, Suzuki’s designs are typically more straightforward. It may mean, especially in the JDM field, that the cars don’t knock your socks off to look at initially, but they more-than prove themselves later. Simplicity is Suzuki’s trump card, in reality.
Publications like The Telegraph have ranked Suzuki as high as second place for reliability, as have reliabilityindex.com in recent years. The brand’s heritage of innovation and building to last has carried through to the 21st century, as Suzuki maintains their philosophy of reliable, well-built machines.
Part of their secret to success in this area has been their reticence to apply brand-new technologies before they are properly tested. Some automakers are drive by technological gimmicks that make for good initial sales but create problems later on. Suzuki has helped itself by staying the course until new technology can really prove itself.
Just take a look at some of the fantastic JDM models we have in stock and you’ll see that Suzuki’s are not only some of the best-quality UK Japanese imports you can get, but also affordable and great value. Competitive pricing has helped Suzuki stay among the world’s top producers, as eager drivers look to snap up a great JDM bargain.
Suzuki – A Japanese Mainstay
Along with its compatriots Honda, Toyota, Nissan, Daihatsu, Isuzu and Mazda, Suzuki has succeeded in winning the approval of the world’s automotive community. By focusing on the fundamental elements of what make a car sought after — engine quality, dependability, driving experience and pleasing design — the company has worked through countless difficulties to stay with us in the modern age.
Inquire today and see what great Suzuki models we have in our JDM import selection.
Suzuki Car Models
- Every Landy
- Grand Vitara
Take time to explore our own range of Suzuki import cars and find a great-value family car that will help you live the strong and innovative message of this great Japanese brand.