year 2000. New turbodiesel (Peugeot Citroen): P4, 8-cells, 80 kW / 109 hp
year 2001. Seven-seat version of the Suzuki Grand Vitara XL-7 with a V6 gasoline engine, 24-cells, 127 kW / 173 hp Gearbox - M5 or A4.
2002 year. Restyling models: a new instrument panel, climate control, a more comfortable suspension.
2003 year. Restyling XL-7: five-speed "automatic" with electronic control, a front axle drive clutch with an electric drive, a new design frame.
The words “SUV” and “SUV” sound almost the same, but are filled with different meanings. The buyer is mainly focused on the image, so most of the inexpensive "SUVs" are SUVs, which are very awkward on the roads. Suzuki Grand Vitara is one of the rare exceptions. A comfortable all-terrain vehicle that meets modern requirements for passive safety has retained the most attractive features of its predecessor, the Suzuki Vitara - a frame structure that lowers the number of gears and low price (ZR, 2002, No. 10, p. 196). But the inheritance also went to some features, not knowing which would ruin the car in two counts, without even moving off the asphalt. Therefore, you need to choose a used Grand Vitara with passion, and use it wisely. In this case, 15-20 thousand dollars for a four-five-year copy will be a reasonable investment of money.
Compared to its predecessor, Grand Vitara is perceived much more respectably. At the same time, they did not sacrifice geometry: clearance - 195 mm, angle of entry - 34 °, exit - 31. The bulk of the cars on the market are five-doors with petrol engines of 2.0 or 2.5 liters (see. History of the model). Three-door in Russia officially sold noticeably less and only with engines of 1.6 liters (two-liter brought from abroad). The “budget” option is the Chevrolet-Tracker, the American Grand Vitara counterpart (cheaper by $ 1.5–2 thousand). The main differences are poor finishes and equipment (with manual windows, no immobilizer and plastic body kit). The main units remained unchanged.
Native “vitars” are also brought from America, and the prices are very attractive - on average, $ 1, 000 cheaper than from Russia or Europe. But, buying a penny for a penny, you can burn out: service in the vastness of the USA is sometimes no better than in the Russian outback, and oils are often designed for engines of the 60-70s. In addition, many cars come with a "killed" transmission.
The most expensive "grandees" - XL-7. Compared to the five-door, their base is increased by 600 mm, and two seats and a second air conditioner are added at the rear. The cross-country ability has suffered a little, but the thrust-weight ratio is at a height: the XL-7 is equipped with the most powerful 2.7-liter V6 engines in the range.
The undoubted advantage of the Grand Vitar is its Japanese assembly and rich equipment: air conditioning (climate control since 2002), airbags, power accessories, including central locking, ABS, EBD (brake force distribution system between the axles). Both automatic and manual gearboxes combine with any of the engines. But there are almost no diesel Vitars in the secondary market, they are not supplied officially.
Two-liter "fours" and V6 - with a timing chain drive, hydraulic tensioners and hydraulic compensators for valve clearances. Therefore, the engine requires a minimum of maintenance, but the slightest dirt (coke, low-temperature deposits) in the lubrication system can disable it. A knock from under the hood, as a rule, is already an indication for replacing the timing drive. It will cost the most for a six-cylinder engine: three chains, three tensioners and six dampers. Frequent oil changes are preferable to rinsing with special fluids: streams of washed mud will only worsen the situation. And the interval between maintenance is better to reduce from 15 to 10 thousand km. With good oils and filters, these engines serve more than 400 thousand km at no particular cost. The five-door engine is quite enough two-liter engine, cheaper to operate than the V6. The Six with the MCP is an explosive mixture: sometimes the wheels turn even on dry asphalt. It is more appropriate "automatic", which is equipped with most cars.
1.6 liter engine, simple and reliable - a modernized unit of the old Vitara. There are no hydraulic compensators, and the camshaft is driven by a belt that is changed every 100 thousand km together with a tensioner pulley. The three-door of this motor is enough, even with an "automatic". The two-liter version is more likely for fans to "light up."
Cars from California are equipped with a sophisticated recirculation system (EGR) to meet local toxicity standards. In Russia, these do not feel the best: souring valves causes a system failure and a “Check Engine” signal. You can ride this way, but you can’t get an inspection. Another problem is underheating of the engine: a standard thermostat, designed for the California heat, begins to open at 82 ° C. We should replace it with a 87- or 92-degree (the temperature is marked on the case).
Overheating is usually caused by clogged radiators (engine and air conditioner). Flushing restores the thermal balance of the engine. If it comes to a boil, the top tank of the radiator may burst (it can be replaced by a more durable aluminum, Russian-made). Sometimes the cause of overheating is a viscous coupling failure. It is simple to check: on a cold engine, the fan should rotate freely, by hand, and on a hot (of course, stopped) - not crank. The thermostat and water pump are reliable enough, antifreeze is changed every 50 thousand km.
MAIN DRIVE - REAR
The main problem of the Vitar, or rather, of their owners, is non-compliance with the operating rules. Cars have no cross-axle differential: the front and rear axles are rigidly interconnected. Off-road four-wheel drive is only a plus, but with good traction - a sure way to kill the transmission. The front axle is connected only in mud or in deep snow (possible at speeds up to 100 km / h). The second prerequisite is the same wheels on both axles, including the degree of wear. Finally, the aluminum front axle housing should be protected immediately with a steel pallet.
The driver, who did not pay attention to the yellow lamp of the turned-on front end and the car's appetite, played out, after a few months of “asphalt rally” will receive a well-deserved punishment - a many-day visit to the service. In Russia, on the “Grand Vitara” of the first years of production, the failed front axle differential was replaced under warranty - it was reinforced. Instead of gray (factory) sealant, he sees red on the crankcase connector. Cars from the USA did not fall under the guarantee; they will have to be repaired at their own expense. However, a differential with “reinforced” engaging teeth (from April 1999 on all machines) does not remove the increased loads from the transmission, but transfers them further to the splined connection to the SHRUS shaft. It is precisely this that begins to erupt among “forgetful” drivers. Leaking down the oil seal of the right inner joint is a serious bell. Replace the seal here can not do, and will have to change the differential, and constant velocity joints. You may need to disassemble the transfer case to replace the extended chain. Express diagnostics of the transmission is simple: on mud or sand, turn on the front axle while driving and turn the steering wheel all the way to the left. Knock - an indication for "showdown".
If the front axle does not turn on (the lamp continues to blink), you can calculate the malfunction yourself. To do this, having completely hung up the car, disconnect the air supply tube from the front axle clutch (pictured on the right), turn on the transmission and supply air with the mouth to the clutch (high pressure, for example, from the compressor, is unacceptable - this will lead to rupture of the diaphragm). If the front wheels are in motion, the clutch is serviceable. If the air leaves and the wheels do not spin, the diaphragm of the drive is broken. Then we check the operation of the compressor (is air supplied?) And, finally, the condition of the mains. It happens that in winter the condensation freezes in the tubes, so periodically blow them with a rubber bulb.
In order for the “razdatka” to work for a long time and without failures, it should be turned on when the clutch is squeezed out or on even gas and in no case should force be used - otherwise it will jam the box or, conversely, the transmission will start to fly off-road. In general, the transmission life is determined not so much by the condition of the roads as by the qualifications of the driver. Subject to the recommendations given, “Vitara” will not overtake even in hard work - it will pull the boat ashore, pull the loaded trailer uphill, and drive it to the hunting lodge.
Gearboxes are flawless. The clutch can withstand, as a rule, from 30 to 100 thousand km, depending on driving style and engine power. Oil in all transmission units is changed every 40 thousand km: 75W90 for axles and manual gearboxes, Dexron III for automatic gearboxes.