***** (K|C|F) *****
[ T H E S U Z U K I C A P P U C C I N O ]
( 1991 – 1997 ) Suzuki Cappuccino ( スズキ·カプチーノ )
The front-engined Suzuki Cappuccino was first produced in October 1991 and had perfect 50/50 weight distribution when both seats were occupied. The aluminium bonnet, roof, roll-bar and lower front guard panels made the car extremely light weighing only 725 kg ( 1,598 lb ). The Cappuccino was priced at ¥1,458,000 ( £10,956 ). Production ended in 1997 with 28,010 being sold in its 6 years of manufacture. The ‘Cappo‘ had 3 removable roof panels, so it could be configured as a ‘closed coupé‘, ‘split roof‘, ‘targa top‘ or with the rear window folded away as a ‘full convertible‘. The hinged wrap-around rear window is glass with demisting elements. The Suzuki ( EA11R ) F6A 660cc turbo charged, intercooled, DOHC, 12-valve, in line 3-cylinder engine developed 63hp ( 47 kW / 64 PS ) @ 6,500 rpm, driving the rear wheels and fitted with 4-wheel disc brakes.
Coupé : Split-roof :
Targa-top : Convertible :
The dream of re-creating a sporting image for Suzuki began in 1987 and within 2 years the ‘project car‘ was shown for the first time at the ‘Tōkyō Motor Show‘. Suzuki intentionally designed the Cappuccino just for the Japanese market. Production started in October 1991 at the Kosai Plant in Shizuoka Prefecture. The car had the designation ‘SX306‘, and the model identification ‘EA11R‘ ( incorporated in the VIN number ). The sales launch of the Cappuccino was November 1991 in Japan, with the advertising theme: ‘fulfilling one’s dream of owning a stylish and very affordable 2-seater sports car‘. The first 2 years saw 15,113 cars produced and 13,318 (or 88% of production) were sold in Japan.
The Cappuccino was the only car to be exported abroad, mainly to Great Britain. In 1991 Suzuki GB ( SGB ) opened discussions with Suzuki Motor Corporation ( SMC ) about launching the car in the United Kingdom and meeting the needs of the British National Type Approval ( NTA ). It took 18 months of negotiation and technical co-operation between ‘SMC‘ and ‘SGB‘ to get the Cappuccino type approved and homologated.
UK Cappuccino’s had 23 adaptations made to the Japanese model in order to conform to British ‘NTA‘ standards with the work being done at the Kosai Plant and at the Suzuki Import Centre. In October 1992 the Cappuccino had its first public viewing outside of Japan, at the ‘British International Motor Show‘. At the show, the Cappuccino won 2 prestigious IBCAM design awards, ‘Best Sports Car under £20,000‘ and ‘Best car of show‘.
In October 1993 the Cappuccino was officially launched in the UK with a price of £11,995. Due to the car’s initial success in Japan, and the tight import quota of Japanese products to the UK at the time, the original allocation of 1,500 cars was cut to 1,182. The cars were either Red ( 80% ) or Metallic Silver ( 20% ). Between 1993 – 1995 a total of 1,110 cars were registered in the UK, but later unsold stocks were also sold to France, Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden. There are currently about 340 Cappuccino’s road registered in the UK, with about the same number being SORN’d ( Statutory Off Road Notice ).
In 1995 tougher emission controls were set by the European Commission ( EC ), which led to the unsold cars having to be registered by 30th September 1995. Any unregistered cars after that date would have had to be re-homologated. Discussions took place between ‘SMC‘ and Suzuki distributors in Europe to assess and value the necessary changes for the Cappuccino to meet these new emission levels. The corporate decision was made not to proceed with a revised European version due to the vast expense involved and lack of economy of scale due to the limited production run.
Also in 1995, Suzuki brought out a newer lighter ‘EA21R‘ engine, which had chain-driven camshafts, slightly increased torque, lighter wheels and optional 3-speed automatic transmission with power steering. Both the EA11R and EA21R ( MT only ) had optional high specification ‘BA‘ variants, which came with an airbag for the driver, ABS on all 4 wheels, a limited-slip differential and ( in some cases ) power-operated door mirrors. There were 3 limited editions of the EA11R, offering variations of colour and trim, the latter two having speed-sensing electric power-assisted steering and aluminium double wishbone suspension.
[ S p e c i f i c a t i o n s ]
Manufacturer: Suzuki Production: 1991 – 1997
Assembly: Kosai, Shizuoka, Japan Body Style: 2-door roadster
Layout: FMR ( front mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive )
Engine: 657 cc ( 0.7 L ) DOHC in-line 3 Transmission: 5-spd ( MT ), 3-spd ( AT )
Wheelbase: 2,060 mm ( 81.1 in ) Length: 3,295 mm ( 129.7 in )
Width: 1,395 mm ( 54.9 in ) Curb weight: 725 kg ( 1,598 lb )
The ‘Suzuki Cappuccino‘ in Computer Games:
1992 ゼロ·ヨン·チャンプII (Zero4 Champ II) (’93): Kat’s Run-Zennihon K-Car Senshuken (’95); ’95 Gran Turismo 2 (’99): Rally de Europe (2000); Sega GT (2000); Shutokou Battle 2 (Tokyo Xtreme Racer 2/Tokyo Highway Challenge 2) (’00): Touge Max G (’00); Shutokou Battle Zero (Tokyo Xtreme Racer Zero) (’01): Auto modellista (’02): まげる つける はし～ (’02): ’92 Gran Turismo 4: Prologue (’03): Initial D Special Stage (Kashiramoji D Special Stage) (’03): ’95 Kaido Battle (Tokyo Xtreme Racer: Drift) (’03): Shutokou Battle 01 (Tokyo Xtreme Racer 3) (’03): ’91 Gran Turismo 4 (’04): ’95 Gran Turismo 4 (’04): ’95 Kaido Battle 2: Chain Reaction (Kaido Racer) (’04): ’92 Sega GT Online (’04): ’91 Enthusia: Professional Racing (’05): Initial D: Street Stage (’05); ’95 Kaido Battle: Touge no Densetsu (Tokyo Xtreme Racer: Drift 2) (’05): Racing Battle: C1 Grand Prix (’05): ’95 Gran Turismo HD Concept (’06): ’95 Gran Turismo 5: Prologue (’07): Initial D: Arcade Stage 4 (’07): ’91 Project Torque (’08): ’95 Gran Turismo 5 (’10): Initial D Arcade Stage 6 AA (’11); Initial D Arcade Stage 7 AA X (’12); ’91 Gran Turismo 6 (’13): ’91 CrossThe Ridge R (’14): CrossThe Ridge Evolution (’14): Initial D Arcade Stage 8 Infinity (’14).
[ G A L L E R Y ]
[ The Cappo based ‘Baby Cobra‘ ]
( also in yellow . . . )
( V a r i o u s . . . )
( The yellow Cappo was my first kei sports-car !! )