Suzuki shows weird, wonderful trio of concepts in Tokyo


Suzuki brought a whole mess of intriguing little runabouts to the Tokyo Motor Show this year. And though the Japanese automaker no longer participates (at least with its four-wheel automobiles) in the North American market, we didn’t want to miss the opportunity to check out its latest oddities, and capture them for your Nipponophilic amusement.

The one that caught our attention the most on the Suzuki stand this year is the Mighty Deck. The little yellow minicar features a canvas roof, an open rear cargo bed, and a genuinely delighted look on its face. Though it strikes us as about as useful as an umbrella in a snow storm, we really dig the stylistic combination of new materials and old, the rugged with the approachable, and of course the tiny size that could only come from the densely packed island nation. We’re not exactly longing for the return of the Suzuki X90, but we’d love a new version to look like this Mighty Deck.

Joining the Mighty Deck is the equally unusual Air Triser, a concept that aims to put the “mini” back in minivan. Though clearly designed for the crowded streets of Tokyo, the Air Triser manages to squeeze three rows of seats into its compact footprint. Maximizing ingress, egress, and interior volume, the engine (surely displacing about as much as a bottle of bubble tea) is pushed all the way into the front, with pillarless side portals consisting of opposing sliding doors. Its shoulders may be high, but the interior appears light and airy, with four individual buckets floating atop the flat wood floor ahead of a rear bench, all uninterrupted by consoles or excessive clutter. Though clearly much smaller than what we’d call a minivan on our side of the Pacific, designs like these make us wonder if we really need our family haulers as big as they are.

Though there were plenty of other production JDM curiosities on the Suzuki stand, the last concept that caught out eye is the Ignis Trail. The ruggedized soft-road hatchback combines rounded styling with beefed-up wheel arches packed with (relatively) large rolling stock, rack rails on a black roof, and anodized red accents inside and out to offset the white and black color scheme.