One on one


The Suzuki Jimny, originally created for the Japanese market, was introduced to Europe in the fall of 1998. Available with a three-door four-seater body, with rear or all-wheel drive. The engine is a gasoline engine with a volume of 1.3 liters, the gearbox is a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic.

The Daihatsu Therios debuted in 1997. The body is a five-door five-seater, the drive is full, the engines are gasoline three- and four-cylinder, with a working volume of 0.7 and 1.3 liters, respectively, the gearbox is a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic.


In the view of an ordinary motorist, an all-terrain vehicle is almost a tank: large, powerful, expensive and … impudent. (The latter is more likely to apply to self-affirming “driver mechanics.”) But there are other all-terrain vehicles: tiny, very tame, and not so “biting” at the price. We made acquaintance with such a couple in the last fall days - Suzuki Jimny (GLX equipment, $ 13, 300) and Daihatsu Therios (SX equipment, $ 15, 600).


More precisely, a jeep. We will attribute this definition to “Suzuki” without stretch, it’s all like that of an “adult”: a massive steel frame to which a body is mounted on rubber cushions, continuous beam of axles on powerful longitudinal levers, front-wheel drive connected (rigidly, without interaxle differential), reduction gear in the transfer case, worm steering.

“Daihatsu” is closer in design to a passenger car: the body is a bearing, although its spars are not inferior in cross-section to a separate frame, the rack and pinion steering does not have a downshift, the drive is full-time with forced electronic locking of the center differential, the front suspension is McPherson, behind - dependent on five jet rods (like the "Lada"). But under the hoods, both have very similar characteristics and, at first glance, “buzzers” that are very unsuitable for all-terrain vehicles: sixteen-valve valves, with a volume of only 1.3 liters, with a maximum torque of 4, 500–5, 000 rpm. However, "evaluate the engine according to his affairs."

We emerge from under the cars - in the end, they do not buy the suspension and the drive. Using cooker's terminology, these are only ingredients: taste is more important to a consumer than a recipe.


The three-door “Suzuki Jimny” looks proportionately folded strong. True, very small, because of which he has a little salon with a snuffbox. In front, two uncles of the 54th size, and even in winter clothes, choose all the gaps - the width at shoulder level is 1220 mm, like in the Oka. And so that they don’t especially bother with their feet, just at the level of the knees the angular blotches on the doors - power window control panels. In terms of length-height, no complaints, quite enough.

For the two rear passengers, the size of the trousers is not critical, but the trousers - the seat is squeezed between the wheel arches and its width is only 960 mm. And it is desirable to have shorter legs, so as not to “hug” the back of the knees. There are no restrictions on the length of the spinal column - with an increase of 180 cm, eight more centimeters remain above the head, moreover, the halves of the split (50/50) back are adjustable in angle of inclination.

Let’s look into the trunk: not every suitcase will go into such a “breadbox” - only 113 liters, “Oka” has almost twice as much, 210 liters. It is possible, however, to fold the back seat (in parts or in whole), but it still rises above the floor and a flat cargo area does not work. The back door opening to the side is equipped with a gas stop, which strives to open it wide open, despite the car standing behind.

“Daihatsu Therios” from afar, somewhere in the open field, can be mistaken for a large five-door all-terrain vehicle on almost “Bigfoot” wheels. And only by approaching closer or placing an ordinary car next to it, you can understand its true dimensions. It is slightly longer, taller, but even smaller in width and rut than the Jimny, and therefore resembles a matchbox set on its side. For front passengers, it is also reasonably generous in length-height and stingy in width. The inner door handles are designed to look like midgets - an adult man can hook them with just one finger. Speaking of fingers: the power windows on both cars are incredibly powerful and will easily crush the resistance of not only the glass that has frozen in winter, but … In general, more closely, especially if you have children with you.

To back passengers - honor and respect, for them own doors, a separate entrance. And so as not to be conceited, let them learn landing in three steps: first, sit on the flanging of the wheel niche, then "lower" your legs, then change seats. They sat down and relaxed. The rudimentary wheel arches crawled into the trunk and did not squeeze the seats, the front backs moved forward and do not rest on the knees - in general, it will be more spacious.

Ta-ak, and what is pressing on the tailbone? Yes, this is a middle seat belt lock! The car is a five-seater. Divide 1205 mm of width into three passengers - in theory it is easy, in practice it is not enough.

What is the trunk? This is already something similar - “whole” 210 liters. Not a wagon, of course, but you can still fold a split (50/50) rear seat. And the site here is flat.


Let’s take a look while driving, trying to at least slightly move away from the door.

"Suzuki Jimny": the ignition is located in the invisible zone; good gear lever - right at hand; the frame head restraints almost do not reduce the already small sector of view through the inner mirror, but the hefty outer "burdocks" are good. Everything else is normal.

"Daihatsu Therios": here the steering wheel and pedals are noticeably shifted to the left (although is it worth it to talk about it if people get used to even the right wheel); there is no platform under the left foot, and the right rubs against the floor tunnel; the gear lever moves are minimal, but the switching forces are too large; the rear window is small due to the wide struts and in addition is blocked by a pair of head restraints. But a wide range of longitudinal seat adjustment.

However, the starting pistol is already aimed at the sky. Bang bang !!!

From the start of the “half-corps”, “Therios” wins back. It is understandable: firstly, the total gear ratios in I and II gears are noticeably larger, and, secondly, all-wheel drive better implements high torque on wet asphalt. Next - the fight on an equal footing with varying success, but the first to break the finish line is “Jimny”, honestly laying out the passport 140 km / h. Opponent is slightly behind - it’s hard to turn an all-wheel drive transmission with such a motor (in “Jimny” in version 2H its front half “rests” thanks to automatic wheel couplings).

More subtle differences in characters are illustrated by elasticity indicators (see table).

Subjective impressions fully confirm the dry digital, which is not always the case. “Jimny” is balanced, loves power-driven riding, calmly reacts to provocative jerks of a not-so-informative steering wheel, makes a little noise and growls displeased at high speed, significantly scouts and shakes on bumps, pretty “goats” and sways on irregularities. What can you do, it's still an all-terrain vehicle: a sturdy, stiffer suspension tuned to an uncompromising fight against pits and boulders, rather than cracks in the asphalt, and would rather break the driver than break itself. Here, with such a small engine capacity, a reduced gear in a “razdatka” will come in handy.

Therios is molded from another dough. He is sluggish at low speeds, but wakes up to three to four thousand and then loudly, with excitement, “spins” right up to seven, provoking a dynamic driving style. His reactions are accurate and moderately sharp, and he keeps the trajectory no worse than another passenger car, without annoying with yaw and swing, although heels noticeably in turns. Good powerful brakes with ABS. The suspension at first seems harsh, but then you notice that you hardly have to brake in front of the potholes. Off-road for this car is not the norm, but rather an episode. Yes, you can go down to something “crossed” and even mash the bushes or snow through shallow snow - fortunately, the engine compartment is well protected. But do not forget that the lowest point under the body is an expensive catalytic converter, and it is simply impossible to drop the four-wheel drive 205 / 70R15 dimensions stuck in the mud with a 1.3-liter engine without a lower gear, even burning the clutch.

Wrap up, buy

And on health. Just keep in mind that the warranty for Suzuki Jimny is three years or 100 thousand km, and for Daihatsu Terios one year or 20 thousand km with a service frequency of 15 and 10 thousand km, respectively. Both babies consume the usual "92nd" gasoline, though exclusively unleaded.

Suzuki Jimny

+ Good cross, solid chassis, low gear in the transfer case, large exterior mirrors, long warranty.

- Stiff suspension, yawing and swinging on bumps, an uninformative steering wheel, increased noise at high speed, a large turning radius, a narrow cabin, a cramped back seat, a small trunk.

Daihatsu Therios

+ Clear reactions on the road, effective brakes, minimal yaw and buildup, protection of the engine compartment.

- Low off-road qualities, the absence of a downshift, an unprotected catalytic converter, rolls in a bend, a narrow saloon, the back seat is cramped for three.

The editors thank the company

Nippon-Karz, Ventus, and Detsky Mir Center for the provided cars.

Similar? Similar. But … different.

"Suzuki Jimny": a real SUV, albeit small, with almost all the advantages and disadvantages inherent in the class.