The new Suzuki S-Cross will reach Australia with more tech, a new look and a likely suite of active safety tech – but its underpinnings might be more familiar than initially thought.
The 2022 Suzuki S-Cross has been unveiled, ahead of its Australian launch confirmed for sometime next year.
While the new S-Cross small SUV’s styling might appear evolutionary, Suzuki claims it’s an “all-new” model – making it Suzuki Australia’s first new-generation car in three years, since 2019’s Jimny – adding updated styling, new interior technology, new-for-model safety features and, in 2022, hybrid power in Europe.
The new model measures 4300mm long, 1785mm wide and 1585mm high in European form, riding on a 2600mm wheelbase. Tellingly, all dimensions except length are identical to those of the outgoing model – suggesting the new S-Cross might simply be a reskin of its predecessor, rather than a ground-up new car, as Suzuki suggests.
Boot space is rated at 430 litres with the rear seats up – also identical to the previous S-Cross, on sale since 2013/14.
First seen in leaked images earlier this month, the new S-Cross adopts a more SUV-like appearance compared to its predecessor, mixing smoother lines with a bold front fascia incorporating a hexagonal gloss black grille and LED headlights.
Prominent black cladding surrounds the wheels (which measure up to 17 inches in diameter), while at the rear there’s a set of clear tail-lights connected by black trim.
Inside, a larger 9.0-inch touchscreen sits atop the dashboard in flagship models, with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and satellite navigation.
In contrast to the new screen, the steering wheel fitted to the new S-Cross appears to be a carry-over from its predecessor, with analogue instrument dials sitting behind (albeit incorporating a small digital screen).
Available comfort and convenience features include wireless phone charging, dual-zone climate control, keyless entry, leather upholstery, heated front seats, a 360-degree camera and a panoramic sunroof.
The Suzuki small SUV’s safety suite has undergone a significant upgrade to match the segment favourites, now including autonomous emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane-keep assist, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control with stop and go, weaving alert and traffic sign recognition.
While the previous-generation S-Cross offered autonomous emergency braking in Europe, the technology wasn’t available in Australia, despite local cars being built in the same factory in Hungary. While not confirmed, it’s likely the full suite of safety features will be available Down Under with the second-generation range.
Powering European-market versions of the new S-Cross is an evolution of the outgoing car’s 1.4-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine, developing 95kW and 235Nm (from 2000-3000rpm), mated to a six-speed manual or automatic transmission driving the front or all four wheels.
Australian models currently offer a 103kW/220Nm version of the turbo engine – however they lack Europe’s 48-volt mild-hybrid system, which in the new model incorporates a 10kW/50Nm electric motor that assists the engine under acceleration, or reduces fuel consumption. It’s not clear if the hybrid system will come to Australia.
All-wheel-drive versions feature Suzuki’s AllGrip system with a drive mode selector dial for “optimal driving performance in a wide variety of road conditions”.
In Europe, both Vitara and S-Cross ranges will be expanded in the second half of 2022 with Toyota-style hybrid variants, pairing a “newly-developed fuel-powered engine” with a motor-generator unit and an automatic transmission, offering support for petrol-electric hybrid and all-electric driving.
The 2022 Suzuki S-Cross will launch in Australia sometime next year, with local pricing and specifications to be confirmed closer to launch.
“With the launch of the all-new S-Cross and its potential long list of upgraded features and specifications on safety, driver convenience and class leading value, there is no doubt we will continue to increase our presence in the growing SUV market,” said Suzuki Australia general manager Michael Pachota.
Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he started his own website, Redline. He contributed for Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020. Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, from flicking through car magazines as a young age, to growing up around performance vehicles in a car-loving family.