Suzuki produces the Jimny, a small, simple, and supremely capable off-roader. There are no plans to sell the new version in the United States, which is a shame. I think there’s a niche for it in the American market, undercutting the Jeep Wrangler on price. As evidence in support of that argument, I offer the Suzuki Jimny Black Bison edition from Japanese tuner Wald International.
American car buyers love nothing more than black paint and detailing. Virtually every car on the market, from the ZR2 to Alfa Romeo, offers some form of “Midnight” or “Nero Edizione” package to meet this demand. Off-road buyers love nothing more than aggressive flair. The aftermarket has exploded to the point where dealers have begun offering those customizations in-house.
These trends combined can be over the top. It’s a fine line between in-your-face awesomeness and teenage hooligan. But, with the Jimny, incorporating these trends works. The Black Bison mods cancel out the cuteness. They convert the Jimny from a surprisingly great off-roader to advertising what the Jimny is out front. Do you need aero scoops on a Jimny? Absolutely not. But, since when does need come into it?
The Jimny pickup may take the mania a step too far for American tastes. But, the Black Bison edition gets it just right. Waiting 25 years to import one just got a bit harder to swallow. But, hey, egregious online fawning brought the Defender back to the U.S. Maybe there’s hope?
For more Jimny, read Andrew Connor’s review of the last-generation Jimny, which he named the “best worst car” he’s ever driven. Or, wallow in misery with Tyler Duffy as he laments that the United States suffers from a distinct lack of Jimny.
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