Bonneville Kizashi – Something Great is Running
BREA, Calif., Aug. 10 /PRNewswire/ — Since its introduction to the press in July of 2009, Suzuki’s Kizashi has been recognized as a midsize sedan with a difference – or two. Boasting a rigid structure, composed platform, suspension tuned on the famed Nurburgring and available all-wheel drive, the Kizashi has enjoyed accolades from both media and consumers; most notably, the Kizashi ranked first in AutoPacific’s 2010 Vehicle Satisfaction survey. And with 185 horsepower from its 2.4 liter DOHC four, the 2010 Kizashi boasts class-leading power in the four-cylinder segment.
Fast forward to August 2010, and Suzuki moves the Kizashi into a category typically reserved for Bonneville streamliners. With extensive modifications supplied by Richard Holdener and Tom Habrzyk of Advanced Product Engineering and with Road & Track‘s Sam Mitani behind the wheel, American Suzuki’s first-ever automotive assault on the salt begins on August 14 in Wendover, Utah. There, the Bonneville Kizashi – competing in the Blown Gas Coupe category – will rocket its way toward the 200 mph benchmark and, if successful, into Suzuki’s already remarkable motorsport history.
The Bonneville Kizashi began with a pre-production Kizashi prototype. In May 2010, construction of the Bonneville racer began with interior disassembly, underscoring Kizashi’s initial design premise. “Premium without the premium” is, suddenly, completely without the premium, reflecting a bare metal working environment intended for but one mission. Its upscale appointments removed, the Holdener/Habrzyk team installed the SCTA-approved roll cage, an aluminum bulkhead in the rear, racing seat, seat harnesses and window net.
With the cockpit modifications made, it was time to take a look under the hood and build on, with this Kizashi, the performance tradition rooted in Suzuki’s first win on Mt. Fuji some 55 years ago. The spare motor was disassembled to confirm the stock measurements, while the cylinder head was flowed and ported. The Bonneville Kizashi benefits from a new intake manifold, a tuned ‘long tube’ header and – for high rpm durability – forged rods and pistons. With up to 20 pounds of boost from the Turbonetics turbocharger, the Kizashi’s increased horsepower required air-to-water intercooling (and Snow water/methanol injection) – while its output demands a new ACT Clutch and Pressure Plate. A scattershield is added, the oil pan is welded for a new drain fitting and a new 3.5-inch exhaust is fabricated aft of the turbocharger. Additional protection for the high-boost, high-rpm turbo motor is provided by full synthetic 5W-20 racing oil from Lucas Oil.
The Kizashi platform – and its Nurburgring heritage – is morphed into a salt-specific recipe with new coilovers, steel wheels seam welded, and speed-specific 15×7-inch Goodyear Front RunnerÃ‚® rubber. An air dam keeps the Kizashi’s nose planted, window straps and hood pins ensure the hood and glass stay in place, and a parachute can bring the high speed show to an emergency stop. Finally, a dual fire system provides the extra assurance so important for Mitani, with some 900 boosted horses but only a few feet in front of his now high-speed capsule.
With the build completed at the end of July, the first week of August provides a narrow window for the chassis dyno tune and over-the-road (closed course, professional driver) testing. Then it’s on to Bonneville and the week of speed, beginning Saturday, August 14 and ending on Friday, August 20. If the week goes as planned, and the Kizashi performs as designed, the SCTA will have two new members among its 200 mph ranks: Road & Track‘s Sam Mitani and the 2010 Suzuki Bonneville Kizashi.
Suzuki also will launch a dedicated tab on its Facebook page as well as provide details on the Suzuki AllPoints website where race fans can access testing information, vehicle specs, photo albums and more. To learn more about Suzuki’s 2010 Bonneville activities, visit www.facebook.com/suzukiauto or www.suzukiauto.com/allpoints/events/bonneville/.
In addition, Road & Track is producing a series of online videos chronicling the build of this record-breaking Kizashi that can be seen at www.RoadandTrack.com/KizashiBuild and the team will provide live updates from Bonneville at www.Facebook.com/RoadandTrack.
Technical Specifications - 2010 Bonneville Kizashi
Wheelbase: 106.3 inches Overall Length: 183.1 inches Overall Width: 71.7 inches Engine: 2.4-liter, four-cylinder, 16-valve DOHC engine Horsepower: 500 wheel hp @ 7000 rpm Torque: 420 lb.-ft. @ 5100 rpm Transmission, Manual: Six-speed manual transmission Brakes: Front ventilated disc brakes/Rear disc brakes EPA Fuel Economy EPA test cycle does not include 200 mile-per-hour Estimates: evaluation
The Brea, Calif.-based Operations of American Suzuki Motor Corporation (ASMC) was founded in 1963 by parent company Suzuki Motor Corporation (SMC) and currently markets its vehicles in the United States through a network of more than 300 automotive dealerships and numerous other motorcycle, ATV and marine distributors in 49 states. With global headquarters in Hamamatsu, Japan, SMC is a diversified worldwide automobile, motorcycle, and outboard motor manufacturer. In 2009, SMC sold more than 2.3 million new cars and trucks and more than 2.8 million motorcycles and ATVs. Founded in 1909 and incorporated in 1920, SMC has operations in 196 countries and regions. For more information, visit www.media.suzukiauto.com. Suzuki can also be found on Twitter (@SuzukiAuto), Facebook (www.Facebook.com/SuzukiAuto) and YouTube (www.YouTube.com/SuzukiAutomotive).
About Road & Track
Road & Track (http://www.RoadandTrack.com) is the longest-running and most trusted automotive magazine brand in the United States. The content that is provided by Road & Track across a variety of platforms is intended for the passionate automotive enthusiast and contains information about cars and driving blended with wide-ranging feature stories, entertainment and racing coverage. Road & Track’s road tests and comparison tests are the most complete and technically accurate in the industry, focusing primarily on domestic and imported sports cars and sports sedans that are a cut above the ordinary in performance, handling, engineering and efficiency – cars that are above all, fun to drive. Road & Track is a part of the Jumpstart Automotive Group.
SOURCE American Suzuki Motor Corp.