If you've been eyeing a Suzuki Kizashi sedan but haven't yet made a move, you may want to act soon: American Suzuki Motor Corp. is filing for bankruptcy protection, Suzuki has announced.
Many enthusiasts have long lusted after a new U.S.-spec variant of the Suzuki Swift, but it looks like that will remain forbidden automotive fruit. Suzuki plans to wind down U.S. sales of its lineup, which includes a truck, SUV, midsize sedan, and line of SX4 variants. The Suzuki Equator is a rebadged Nissan Frontier truck while the off-road ready Grand Vitara lost its V-6 engine option after Suzuki's connection with GM ended. The front- and all-wheel-drive SX4 sedan and four-door hatchback variants are decent vehicles in need of upgrades, while we're fans of the Suzuki Kizashi sports sedan.
Suzuki ambitiously targeted upscale front-drive sports sedans in the Kizashi's U.S. launch campaign instead of price-based competitors like the Nissan Altima and Mazda6. The automaker's sales in the U.S. numbered 2023 units in October, five-percent above October 2011 but well below a sustainable level.
Suzuki's U.S. Motorcycles/ATV and Marine divisions are unaffected by this announcement, which comes with the company's assurance that all warranties will continue to be fully honored, with parts and service offered through the existing parts and service dealer network.
Here is part of an official statement from Suzuki:
In evaluating its position in the highly regulated and competitive U.S. automotive industry, ASMC determined that its Automotive division was facing a number of serious challenges. These challenges include low sales volumes, a limited number of models in its line-up, unfavorable foreign exchange rates, the high costs associated with growing and maintaining an automotive distribution system in the continental U.S. and the disproportionally high and increasing costs associated with stringent state and federal regulatory requirements unique to the U.S. market. While the decision to discontinue new automobile sales in the U.S. was difficult to make, today's actions were inevitable under these circumstances. ASMC is dedicated to honoring its commitments to Automotive customers through and after the wind down of new automobile sales in the continental U.S.