January 15, 2002
Ignis Super 1600 at Brussels Motor Show
The press conference was held at the 80th Brussels International Motor Show on January 15, 2002 to announce the debut of the Suzuki Ignis Super 1600 in the FIA Junior World Rally Championship.

The Championship will consist of 6 events in Europe as follows, starting with Monte Carlo on upcoming January 17, 2002.
2002 Junior World Rally Championship calendar
Dates WRC round Country
Jan. 17-20 Round 1 Monte Carlo Monaco
Mar. 22-24 Round 4 Catalunya Spain
Jun. 13-16 Round 7 Acropolis Greece
Aug. 22-25 Round 10 Deutschland Germany
Sep. 19-22 Round 11 Sanremo Italy
Nov. 14-17 Round 14 Great Britain U.K.
For more information on this subject, please see our website at;

The attached is a speech made by Mr. Hans van Doorn, the Managing Director of B.V. Nimag, Suzuki distributor in Holland.

Speech by Mr. Van Doorn, Managing Director of B.V. Nimag
At Brussels Motor Show on January 15, 2002
Thank you and welcome to the Suzuki Stand this afternoon. My name is Hans van Doorn, Managing Director of B.V. Nimag, Suzuki distributor in Holland.

On behalf of Suzuki Motor Corporation in Japan and all the Suzuki distributors and dealers all over the world, it is an honour and great pleasure for me to hold a press conference and make a major announcement on Suzuki's first challenge into the Junior World Rally Championship in the year of 2002.

First of all, we must recognize that Suzuki Motor Corporation has established one of the most outstanding statuses as a compact vehicle manufacturer, and shining in the whole world.

In details, Suzuki sells 620,000 automobiles annually in the Japanese domestic market, and has maintained the No 1 position for nearly 30 years in the mini vehicle segment. In the world, we produce 1,740,000 vehicles a year, which are delivered to 193 countries and highly reputed as a daily transporter, business partner, or a tool that enriches people's lifestyle.

Based on its original product development philosophies - "small cars" opens "the big future" "always unique and original" and "taking a different approach to discover new values" - Suzuki has been engaging in the improvement of the basic performances required of automobiles - "run", "turn", and "stop".

We, at Suzuki, believe that motorsport is a very valid means for the manufacturer to test and develop the improvement of those basic performances. More importantly, motorsport is a field to offer dreams and joys to people, and it's a field to share heart-touching moments.

The history of the Suzuki's motorsport is very old. Its first chapter goes back to 1954, when the motorcycle Colleda gained the memorable victory in the Fuji Climbing Race. Brilliant glory continued; 3-year continuous championships in the World Grand Prix 50 cc class from 1962-64, 7-year continuous manufacturer titles of 1976-82 World GP 500cc, 10 consecutive wins of 1975-83 World Motocross GP 125cc class, Le Mans 24-hour Endurance Race victory in 1985, and so on. All of the victories certified the Suzuki's advanced technologies in each phase of the history.

To tell the truth, the machine that won the World GP in 1962 was powered by a 2-stroke engine, which was very unique in those days when 4-stroke engines were the mainstream. The legend of the model embodying Suzuki's uniqueness is succeeded today, and the challenging spirit is inherited and is still alive in Suzuki.

In automobile motorsport, the 360 cc mini vehicle Suzulight Fronte grabbed attention in the 1960s. And, hundreds of 360cc engines were tuned and supplied to private teams participating in formula races in Japan at that time. From the 1980s, with the cooperation of Suzuki Sport Co. Ltd., Suzuki won titles after titles in the Asia Pacific Rally Championship, Pikes Peak Hill Climb in the United States, and other Japanese domestic races and rallies. Our objectives are; one is to gather vital information and technologies and feed them back to production vehicles, and the other is to contribute to the expansion and promotion of motorsport itself.

Well, why Suzuki decided to go into the Junior WRC? It is because the idea proposed by FIA matched with Suzuki's motorsport philosophy that is " changing motorsport from a special event - in which a limited number of people can enjoy - into what people can casually participate, and to share the joy of piloting cars with as many people as possible. And, it is because Suzuki is fully convinced that we could show our potentials especially in the 1600cc Junior WRC as the specialist of compact vehicles

Now, I would like to introduce to you Suzuki's new machine Ignis Super 1600 that will debut in Monte Carlo this weekend.

It has been developed and modified through the tough competitions in the Asia Pacific Rally Championship last season. The base model Ignis was launched in Autumn 2000, and has been playing an important role as a strategy model in the range.

Firstly, the 1.6L DOHC engine to revolve smoothly up to the rev limit and can produce more than 200ps.

One of the most advanced and unique features of the Ignis Super 1600 might be the 6-speed sequential transmission that delivers the power to the road, utilizing Suzuki's motorcycle expertise and technologies.

Three teams are to rally the Suzuki Ignis Super 1600 in the 2002 season and they are from Japan, Finland and Germany. All of the drivers are very competitive and have potentials, and we hope they will show us exciting rallying this season.

In the past, motorsport might have been just what people watched and admired the speed.

However, the joy, dream, or excitement of motorsport will not be experienced, until we participate.

In order to share the pleasure with as many motorists as possible, Suzuki started what we call One Make Race Series from last year in Japan. And we decided to support the teams challenging the Junior WRC here in Europe.

We are now undertaking the project to establish an organization in Hungary in the very near future. Our production factory in Europe is located in Hungary. This project includes the supply of this Ignis Super 1600 to the whole world, and to European customers as well. In other words, we are planning to supply the Ignis Super 1600 to other teams, both for national competition and the JWRC.

Lastly, I would like to thank the sponsors, and parts manufacturers for understanding and continuous support toward our motorsport activities. I also thank Mr Hirotaka Ono, Senior Managing Director of Suzuki Motor Corporation and Mr. Nobuhiro "Monster" Tajima, the president of Suzuki Sport Co. Ltd. for responding to our strong request to challenge the rally in Europe. This is what we were looking for and what I believe Suzuki users waited for.

As its name suggests, we hope the Suzuki Ignis will ignite the 2002 Junior World Rally Championship season. Keep an eye on Suzuki.

Thank you very much.