But the Suzuki Vision Gran Turismo is strictly virtual and not a true Cappuccino successor
Images and full specifications for the long-awaited replacement for the Suzuki Cappuccino roadster from the mid-1990s have finally been revealed, but, sadly, the Suzuki Vision Gran Turismo is strictly virtual.
Picking up where the pint-sized Cappuccino left off, the 2022 Suzuki Vision Gran Turismo is now available for gamers with the latest ‘Update 1.15’ for Gran Turismo 7, and shares plenty in common with the original Kei car classic.
Not only does it borrow from the original’s diminutive proportions, the two-seat roadster reboot features a powertrain based once again on a Suzuki motorcycle engine.
But with no Kei car regulations to comply with, the latest Vision Gran Turismo can forego the Cappuccino’s tiny 657cc three-cylinder turbo-petrol engine and instead use a much larger 1340cc four-cylinder from the mighty Suzuki Hayabusa superbike.
Boosting power over the standard bike engine, the Japanese car-maker has added not one but two electric motors that both drive the front axle, with the mid-mounted Hayabusa donk taking care of driving the rear wheels.
Combined, the Suzuki GT, which borrows its styling cues from the current Suzuki Swift, produces a mighty 318kW and 610Nm of torque.
There’s no word on performance, but Suzuki says even with the weight of extra electrification, total mass remains pegged at 970kg, while peak power of the ’Busa is delivered at a dizzying 9700rpm, providing the perfect screamer of a soundtrack.
Suzuki hasn’t fully detailed how the new powertrain works, nor what transmission the Vision roadster gets. But inside there’s no manual gear lever, suggesting a sequential two-pedal set-up.
The cabin is a minimalist affair, with small displays replacing door mirrors.
Helping the driver focus, there’s no infotainment system, while a small head-up display replaces a traditional instrument cluster.
Suzuki has not yet announced plans to produce a production version of what must be the brand’s most exciting car since the stillborn Suzuki GSX-R/4 concept, which also came equipped with the Hayabusa superbike engine.
That means the tiny Cappuccino, which was built from 1991-1998, is set to remain an interesting footnote in Suzuki’s mainly mainstream passenger car and SUV line-up.
Originally introduced to rival the Autozam AZ-1 and Honda Beat, Suzuki’s front-engined sports car first came with a 657cc turbocharged three-pot that was eventually enlarged to a 658cc turbo.
Power remained pegged at 47kW but the last versions had a (relatively) punchy 103Nm of torque.
Over the years, Suzuki has often teased a replacement with the 1997 C2 Concept, 1999 EV Sport Concept, the 2001 GSX-R/4 and the student-designed 2021 Suzuki Misano concept.
However, the high cost of development and the decline of the global sports car segment has clearly made any follow-up difficult to justify.