Sadly, as we suspected upon seeing the official sketches of the Kizashi that were registered by Suzuki at the European trademark office in 2008, the mid-size sedan's appearance looks to be severely toned down compared to the head-turning concept.
The Kizashi 3 prototype had an all-new, 300HP 3.6-liter, naturally-aspirated V6 engine with power delivered through a six-speed automatic transmission to all four wheels. The road-going model will most likely be offered with a detuned version of the V6 as well as an inline four-cylinder engine producing somewhere north of 150 horsepower, the latter driving the front-wheels.
In North America, the Kizashi will compete against the likes of the Chevrolet Malibu, Toyota Camry, Honda Accord and Mazda6 sedans. In accordance to the latest reports, the Kizashi will hit U.S. showrooms by the end of year, meaning that we'll probably see it making its global premiere at a major international motorshow this fall, perhaps at the Tokyo Salon in October.
Suzuki has yet to confirm when (and if) the Kizashi will reach European shores, but if it does, the Japanese automaker will have to enhance the sedan's lineup with smaller sized gasoline and diesel engines if it wants to rival family sedans like the Opel Insignia, Toyota Avensis and Citroen C5.
Kudos to Peter!