Remember the Suzuki Kizashi? Chances are the answer is no, as Suzuki’s midsize sedan never really gained any traction here in the U.S. According to a report from Drive, an Australian publication, Suzuki is unlikely to develop a replacement for the Kizashi given how the current model was considered a flop in most markets.
Suzuki’s Australian managing director Masaaki Kato is quoted in the report as saying that the Suzuki Kizashi was a “headache” and an “unlucky car,” especially considering the huge investment which was made to develop the car. Even after the Kizashi’s debut, Suzuki was reportedly working on other variants, including turbocharged, V-6, and wagon versions, but these plans disappeared after the Kizashi failed to catch on. Kato cited poor timing as a primary reason for the Kizashi’s poor sales globally, as it launched in 2009 shortly before economic crises hit both the U.S. and Europe. Suzuki has since pulled out of the U.S. market entirely, with American Suzuki Motor Corp. filing for bankruptcy in 2012.
Just how bad were Suzuki Kizashi sales on our shores? In 2011, the Suzuki Kizashi’s best year in the U.S., it only sold 6942 units; in fact, from 2009 to 2013, Suzuki only sold slightly more than 20,000 Kizashis total, considerably less than the number of Toyota Camrys and Honda Accords sold every single month.
The sad thing is, we really liked the Suzuki Kizashi. After keeping a 2010 Suzuki Kizashi SLS AWD for a year-long Four Seasons test, we had plenty of nice things to say about the surprisingly pleasant Kizashi, complementing its high-quality interior, bulletproof reliability, eager four-cylinder engine, and sporty driving dynamics. From our perspective, its main problems were its lack of brand equity and the fact that it was sized awkwardly between the compact and midsize segments.