“Cute Ute” is a term that gets bandied about from time to time, but is probably best exemplified by today’s Nice Price or No Dice Suzuki. Let’s see if this T-top-packing 4x4 has a cheeky price to go along with all that cute style.
Fire up the Mystery Machine, Scoob, we’ve got crimes to solve! It’s obvious that many of you were channeling your favorite Mystery Incorporated character (mine’s Velma) in discerning the actual motives behind the ad for yesterday’s 1990 Chevrolet Corvette ZR-1.
A lack of info in the ad, along with an evidently faked mileage reading got quite a few of you to thinking it was all a scam, with some going as far as to suggest it was part of some sort of global organ harvesting cartel. Considering that rightfully you should all have that little organ donor dot on your driver’s license, I don’t see the problem with that.
Still, at $17,500, that ZR-1 was also suspiciously cheap, and that led to the majority of you chalking it up to being a fake ad intended only to scam some unsuspecting ’Vette lover out of their cash. Whether it was a scam or not, you dropped it to the tune of a 67 percent No Dice loss. That ’Vette would have gotten away with it too if it wasn’t for you darn Jalops.
If you are old enough to have lived through the 1980s and ’90s then you probably recall those decades as an era full of a lot more new-car options and a heck of a lot more gas stations. These days, the numbers of both have dwindled precipitously.
But back then, there seemed to be a pair of pumps on almost every street corner and you could guzzle from those petrol-pumping teats in any number of models from carmakers like Daihatsu, Yugo, Mercury, or Isuzu. Those are all gone from our shores, along with Pontiac, Oldsmobile, Plymouth, Merkur (yeah, I went there), and Suzuki, the maker of the object of today’s consideration. I guess that with such a big reduction in brands, we don’t really need so many filling stations anymore either.
This 1996 Suzuki X-90 4x4 is perhaps the weirdest car the company ever offered here. It’s certainly the most distinctive in a kewpie doll, charm bracelet tchotchke kind of way.
The X-90 replaced the Samurai in Suzuki’s U.S. lineup after the earlier model had grown a bit long in the tooth and had garnered some bad press when Consumer Reports reported to consumers that it could conceivably b flipped if you manically sawed at the wheel at any speed over 20 miles per hour.
The Samurai’s replacement traded in the earlier truck’s ladder frame and leaf springs for a unibody design and a suspension employing MacPherson struts in the front and a coil-sprung axle in the back. The body sitting on top of that also eschewed the Samurai’s slab-sided looks for a style that was… well, just look at it and we’ll leave it at that. Power was offered by a 1.6-liter SOHC four-cylinder giving 95 horsepower, and that could be backed up by either a five-speed stick or a four-speed automatic with 4WD as an additional option.
This 1996 edition is laudably fitted with the five-speed and part-time 4WD. Obviously, it also has the standard T-top roof and some jazzy X-90 graphics on the doors. The bodywork appears to be straight, and aside from some scrapes on the front bumper below the license plate mounting holes, looks to be clean and undamaged. Factory wheels underpin and appear equally serviceable.
It’s inside where the fun really begins, though. The cabin is festooned with wonderfully kitschy ’90s upholstery featuring a pattern that’s somewhere in between that of a Dixie Cup and a bus seat. This decoration extends across the seats and to the inserts on the doors. It all looks to be in wonderful shape. Other plusses here include dual airbags and a factory stereo that offers both cassette and CD changer controls. Sadly, A/C was apparently not optioned when the truck was new.
Perhaps a lack of cabin cooling played a role in this X-90’s odo reading only managing a paltry 81,000 miles. That’s peanuts for the Suzuki’s advanced age and as the ad notes a fairly recent servicing that replaced the timing belt, head gasket, and O2 sensor, it should be ready to start piling on to that number. The title is clear and the Suzuki is presented as a two-owner car.
To make that number three, someone will need to come up with the $8,900 the seller is asking for the Suzuki’s trade. Of course, we’re here to help that prospective buyer by determining if the X-90 is worth that as it sits.
What’s your take on this twee Suzuki and that $8,900 asking? Does that seem like a good deal for the shape and miles? Or, does that price tag make you glad Suzuki left the car market here?
H/T to AllUsedUp for the hookup!
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