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Suzuki's first PHEV offers low BIK and 47-miles of battery power

Suzuki Across SUV (20 on) - rated 0 out of 5
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At a glance

Lease from new From £690 p/m View lease deals
Used price £33,280 - £35,860
Used monthly cost From £831 per month
Fuel Economy 282.4 mpg
Road tax cost £140
New

PROS

  • Long battery-only range of 47 miles
  • Low CO2 emissions
  • Quick acceleration

CONS

  • It's expensive in cash terms
  • Toyota offers cheaper RAV4s
  • Only available in one model

Suzuki Across SUV rivals

Written by Tom Wiltshire on

Suzuki has introduced its new Across SUV, and if you’re thinking it looks quite familiar, you’d be right. The Across is the first car to be released as part of Toyota and Suzuki’s global ‘business agreement’ – one which will see the two companies share their expertise of hybrid technology and small cars respectively.

The Across, then, is essentially a Toyota RAV4 that’s been given a new face to better fit in with its Suzuki siblings. It’ll be offered by Suzuki in its plug-in hybrid guise, and will top the brand’s SUV range in size and power. It'll go on sale later in 2020.

What exactly is the Suzuki Across?

Like the Toyota RAV4 on which it’s based, the Across is a large, five-seat SUV intended to compete with the likes of the Honda CR-V, Skoda Karoq and Mazda CX-5.

While the RAV4 is also offered as a basic, self-charging hybrid (one that can’t be plugged in) Suzuki’s only offering the Across in its plug-in guise. That means it pairs a 2.5-litre petrol engine with an two electric motors and an 18.1kWh battery pack, capable of driving the Across for up to 47 miles without troubling the petrol motor at all.

There’s a motor on each axle, giving the Across four-wheel drive – a Suzuki hallmark, though this E-Four system (as Suzuki and Toyota call it) won’t be as effective for off-roading as Suzuki’s usual AllGrip mechanical setup.

What’s the difference between this and the RAV4?

Very little. Obviously, Suzuki’s restyled the front grille and headlights, but the remainder of the car appears identical – right down to the alloy wheels.

However, those wheels are only available on top-spec Dynamic RAV4s as an optional extra, so Suzuki is clearly pitching the Across towards the top end by offering only a single higher-priced, highly-specified version. This aligns with the tactic of only offering the plug-in hybrid rather than the cheaper self-charging variant.

There's a 9.0-inch infotainment touchscreen – the same as the RAV4 plug-in and an inch larger than the standard RAV4 – with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity. Bi-LED headlights, lane-keeping aids and rear cross-traffic alert will also come as standard.

Is it like the RAV4 to drive?

We can’t imagine there’ll be much, if any difference whatsoever, in how the Across and the RAV4 conduct themselves on the roads – Toyota builds these for Suzuki, after all, so there’s not much scope to personalise the chassis tuning for Suzuki customers.

We’ve not yet driven the RAV4 plug-in hybrid, though, so we can’t yet comment on whether it’s different to the standard model in terms of dynamics. At least it's powerful, with a combined petrol/electric power output of 302hp.

Suzuki claims an all-electric range of 47 miles and CO2 emissions as 22g/km. That latter figure is lower than any of its plug-in rivals including the Ford Kuga, Kia Niro PHEV and Mitsubishi Outlander. No fuel economy figures have yet been released, though as with most plug-in hybrids you can expect a headline figure in the hundreds of mpg. More realistic figures depend entirely on the style in which the car’s driven, and particularly the length of the journeys.

What do you get for your money?

The Suzuki Across is fully equipped and is far from cheap for a Suzuki. But plug-in hybrids SUVs are still thin on the ground, and its £45,999 cash price is in line with its rivals, aside from the good value Ford Kuga. The Across will appeal to company car drivers thanks to its low official CO2 emissions and 47-mile range range on battery alone, as it attracts very low benefit-in-kind tax.

Effectively, you get everything including the kitchen sink as standard. There's adaptive cruise control, a leather interior, heated front and rear seats, a heated steering wheel, dual-zone automatic climate control and an electrically-powered tailgate as standard. The options list is light, but mainly because Suzuki appears to have fitted pretty much of it all as standard.

Further reading:

Suzuki Across SUV rivals