Not exactly what you want to see when you’re just driving down the road.
A few weeks ago, two German-market Suzuki Jimny models were shipped to Los Angeles for World Car of the Year testing. During that time, Australia-based CarAdvice found a problem Suzuki didn’t previously know about. While driving through a mountain pass outside Pasadena, California, the Jimny’s automatic emergency braking system engaged when it detected a guardrail. After finding the bug, they suspected the car mistook the guardrail for another vehicle and slammed on the brakes.
While Suzuki engineers hadn’t encountered the problem before in their own testing, they were able to replicate the issue on the same stretch of road. According to a statement by Suzuki Australia general manager Michael Pachota:
“There is a possibility that the (stability control) is instantaneously switched on when departing the S-shaped curve — and then consecutively switches on because the vehicle is circling the curve at high speeds.”Quote: CarAdvice.com.au
Suzuki is reportedly considering a software update to prevent a similar problem in the future. As it stands, it seems the Jimny was confused by this particular stretch of road, but that isn’t stopping global sales. Of course, the car still isn’t going to be available in the U.S., but it is interesting to see how it coped with the mountain roads outside Los Angeles.
Still, the driver safety featured in the Suzuki Jimny are a welcome addition. After all, our long-term Suzuki Samurai has little in the safety department beyond seat belts. In Euro NCAP safety testing, the Suzuki Jimny scored three out of five stars. The full reported stated the system “performed well in tests of its functionality at the low speeds, typical of city driving, at which many whiplash injuries are caused.”