Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen.
Welcome, and thank you for joining Suzuki today.
Splash, which we unveiled in the opening, is Suzuki's fourth global strategy car and is the production model of Project Splash that we announced last year in Paris.
Having written the world's history for mini multipurpose vehicles (MPVs) through developing the Wagon R, Suzuki has engineered this Splash as a next-generation MPV after carefully studying the current changes and expansion of needs.
Splash signals the beginning of the second phase of Suzuki's global strategy.
The theme for this phase is "Family."
"Sporty" was sought for the first phase's Swift, Grand Vitara, and SX4.
To that sporty base, we included user friendly characteristics befitting a tool closely combined with family lifestyles that Suzuki excels at. Our goal was to engineer a multipurpose vehicle that's ideal for various people and lifestyles, along with families that want to enjoy outings either alone or with friends.
The compact yet tall body enables a comfortable and pleasant ride in all situations, from daily shopping runs to long-distance drives.
Furthermore, the interior projects the joy of driving through a strikingly original and colourful design.
Space utility was ensured in an effort to offer excellent usage and versatility.
Splash is built on Swift's platform, which has a very good reputation for sporty performance.
Splash delivers both very good handling stability on European roads, from the Autobahn to local stone-paved roads, and a very smooth and comfortable ride.
Environmental issues were certainly considered during development.
All engines deliver excellent environmental performance and lower CO2 emissions.
Splash will be built in Hungary, and will be delivered to you next spring.
The second phase of our global strategy also has new Alto waiting in the wings.
"Driving performance," which is central to all Suzuki's global strategy cars, comes from Suzuki's motorsport DNA.
As we have already announced, Suzuki will enter the WRC on a test basis next month and its first full season in 2008.
The "SX4 WRC 2007" is displayed behind you today.
This year's test runs with the SX4 WRC car will be piloted by tarmac specialist Nicolas Bernardi at Rallye de France and gravel expert Sebastian Lindholm at Wales Rally GB.
We look forward to their performance in a machine that has been honed to the highest level.
Please watch for Suzuki in its debut race.
Suzuki is also gearing up for the new WRC regulations that will be effective in 2012.
Suzuki's global slogan "Way of Life!" refers to providing spirited and straightforward products built on Suzuki's sports DNA, thereby making the customers' lifestyles more exciting.
To strengthen our brand image as a maker of cars, motorcycles and outboard engines, we are using the same "Way of Life!" slogan, for all these fields.
This "Way of Life!" spirit is apparent not only in our products. It is the well-spring of all of Suzuki's activities.
For example, we are jointly supporting the protection of rhinos in Tanzania.
For my last item, I'd like to present a model that indicates Suzuki's future.
Suzuki follows up the "sporty" for the first phase of the global strategy, "family" for the second phase, and with "status" for the third phase in an effort to take up a challenge for a new market.
Our sales have rapidly increased over the years.
Our mid-term 5-year plan ultimately targets 3,000,000 units worldwide for 2009.
Our sales here in Europe, have also increased, and we target 420,000 units in 2009.
In order to meet our sales targets and provide a wider range of products that answers the demands of the growing numbers of customers who love Suzuki, we began the development of a D-segment model to take up a challenge for a new market.
The "status" of the third phase refers to the fact that the Suzuki brand is now confident it has grown to the point it can talk about status and that it now has the ability to take on the challenge of making a status car.
Development of the D-segment model will be done both in virtual realm and traditional methods honed on motorcycle development that value actual testing and the feedback gained.
This is the spirit of Suzuki's "Way of Life!"
To raise the quality of the driving performance, our tradition of AWD technology along with the lowest CO2 emissions in its class will be incorporated.
So, I'd like to introduce the concept car that will realize this D-segment project.
It is "Concept Kizashi."
"Kizashi" is the Japanese word for "prelude" or "foretaste".
The naming reflects the fact that Suzuki is always changing and evolving.
I have kept you waiting long enough.
I give you "Concept Kizashi"