Swift Unveils Second Full Hybrid for Europe

Suzuki will introduce its second full self-charging hybrid powered model to the European market in the shape of the new Vitara Hybrid.

Following the success if its Swace Hybrid station wagon, the new Vitara uses its latest K15C 1.5-liter gasoline engine coupled to a hybrid including a 140V lithium-ion battery pack and inverter, motor generator unit (MGU) using a 12V lithium-ion battery, as well as a conventional 12V lead-acid battery to power components requiring lower voltage such as lights, instruments and heating and air conditioning.

The new hybrid system has two switchable modes which are Eco and Standard. One switch enables the driver to change between the two modes depending on conditions and also increases the frequency of EV driving. In Standard mode operation, the MGU more frequently assists the gasoline engine to allow a temporary power boost.

The MGU acts as both a generator and starter motor, is belt driven and assists the gasoline engine during vehicle take off. Additionally, the hybrid system collects kinetic energy and generates electricity by stopping the engine and disengaging the clutch during deceleration which expands the EV driving range.

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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