The Suzuki S-RIDE Concept

The S-RIDE: bringing fun and style to commuting

The first of Suzuki’s two concept cars at the show is designed to offer a new approach to urban mobility. Aimed at young drivers, the lightweight S-RIDE builds on Suzuki’s sports bike heritage to combine the fun of a motorcycle with the convenience of a car.

Its tandem layout with engine amidships means that the passenger sits behind, and with legs either side of, the driver.

The unconventional design features a narrow aluminium body, but a wide track and prominent wheel housings to give a strong sense of stability. Occupants climb in and out by lifting open the glass canopy that hinges forward at the base of the A-pillars, with the separate windscreen remaining in place.

The high output, three cylinder engine is mated to a CVT transmission and together with the S-RIDE’s light weight and double wishbone suspension front and rear, delivers agile and sporty performance.

A monitor contained within the instrument panel serves as both a speedometer and navigation tool. Designed to showcase next-generation telematics, S-RIDE’s ‘Lovers Sync’ locates and directs the driver to the person with whom they are talking via a mobile phone.

Concept-S: a foretaste of things to come

The exciting Concept-S is one of a series of study models that forms the basis of the next Suzuki Swift supermini. This will make its world debut towards the end of the year and will be manufactured by Magyar Suzuki in Hungary.

Reflecting Suzuki’s design philosophy of small, fun-to-drive cars with a powerful presence, the chunky, ‘wheel in each corner’ styling gives Concept-S a dynamic, sporty character matched to a strong impression of stability. This is emphasised by 18 inch wheels and a length of just 3.65 m. Original features include a ‘wraparound’ windscreen concealing the A-pillars and flowing into the side windows, and vertically stacked headlight units, providing a clear indicator of future Suzuki design direction.

The curving lines of the interior mimic the window design, while the shape of the dashboard takes its inspiration from the wings of a biplane; its aluminium uprights are reminiscent of a motorcycle.

Push-buttons on the steering wheel completely replace standard controls such as the gear lever, handbrake, direction indicators and windscreen wipers, for greater safety.

continues... | Part Three

Published : 17/05/04 Author : Melanie Carter

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