On the face of it, $27,000 seems a bit steep for a small Suzuki SUV, but this Limited V-6 is fully loaded. (A four-cylinder model is also available.) The Grand Vitara's weakness when it was introduced back in the late 1990s was its powertrain; it originally had an anemic V-6. Now its 230-hp 3.2-liter does deliver the goods: acceleration from 75 to 90 mph is more than adequate. But it still lacks the sort of auditory refinement that you would find in a Honda or Toyota engine.
Truth is, when it comes to a Suzuki Grand Vitara, I'd rather have a base model, four-cylinder with manual. I just can't see spending $27K on this vehicle; it's more like a $22K vehicle to me. Among my complaints? The heated seat has only on and off settings; it should have high and low. The interior plastics are okay but not great. And this removable navigation system? Pretty chintzy, especially these days when you can get an integrated navigation system in a sub-$20K Honda Fit.
Joe DeMatio, Deputy Editor