The Little SUV That Could: Suzuki SJ10

Up until the mid 80s, Suzuki made little 4×4 jeep-like things which were more military than civilian. They had a fierce reputation for being unstoppable go-anywhere beasts, due to their lightweight contruction, generous ground clearance and tiny size. Check out this mid 70s SJ10* do its thing. And if you’re wondering about the powerplant, yes it’s a 540cc 2-stroke, pumping out all of 33hp and 38 foot pounds of torque!

Will it get all the way up the hill? Place your bets!

*which may, or may not…have been designed by Albrecht Goertz

This post is filed under: suzuki.

17 Responses to The Little SUV That Could: Suzuki SJ10

  1. Mr.L.J. Nordvik says:

    Now,that’s a cute 4×4! Like an FJ40 for Hobbits. 😉 Definately a Goertz-design! Maybe you could make stickers and T-shirts with the phrase: “Designed by Albrecht Goertz” ? It’s turned into such a cool inside joke.

  2. Slag says:

    Aw man, that’s like watching a puppy try and try and try to, I dunno, catch a ball or something, and then finally do it. I nearly cried!

  3. Glen says:

    Awesome!!! I love the sound of 2 strokes …… Braaaap!

  4. Neil says:

    Most definatly designed by Albrecht Goertz, everyone knows he designed everything worth posting about.

  5. Bob says:

    Albrecht Goertz designed my Chrysler.


    Why am I not seeing anything? Is there a video attached to this?

    Oddly enough, I DO know of an LJ20 sitting in a garage locally, and I’ve been trying to get at it for years, but the owner is a junk collector/putz and wants to sell it, then when someone is interested he decides he doesn’t want to because it might be valuable, then does this all over again. I’ve never seen the truck in it’s entirety either because it’s at the back of what’s likely the world’s deepest attached garage and covered with stuff.

  6. Jimbo says:

    Man that was awesome! Thank you for posting it. I am not into off roading, but that looked like fun. The only off road driving I have done is getting to the 2008 JCCS in Irvine in my 85 RX-7.

  7. Boy, if this were a military version, the foe would think the other side was making popcorn…reminds me of ancient SAABs.

  8. Ben says:

    Hahah, Mr. Nordvik. Good t-shirt idea!

    Bob – there should be a video.

    Aweseome vid, Kev. it sure made the smallest of struggles seem epic!

  9. Omawari_San says:

    Had a Lj80 long time ago. Awesome car.

  10. j.a.c.k says:

    this is the suzuki samurai’s grandpa?

  11. GEN2TWINCAM says:

    I love those things! My bet is that he could have eased-up the hill first shot if he had some decent tires!

    My semi-nostalgic 1st-gen Montero (Pajero) has proven pretty useful here in the mountains.

    Neil – Colorado

  12. slickwrick says:

    its like the classic version of the suzuki samurai!

    that thing is amazing!

  13. Rusty72 says:

    I had one of these beasts as a first car, except mine was a soft top.Very top heavy little car, so we made a thick roll cage for it, which was beneficial when I flipped it front over back one day. Tipping the scales at 700kg, it was pretty simple to get back on to it’s wheels and happily rap-rapped along as soon as it was on it’s feet.
    I now own a modified jeep wrangler, and although I love it, probably would have a real fight against a little monster like that in a hill climb!!

  14. BlownArrow! says:

    I think i can, I think i can, I think i can…… I did, I did……. 😀

  15. seventhskyline says:

    Thats awesome! Now, I wonder what one could do with a good porting job, more compression, a trio of flat slide carbs and a 3 nice expansion chambers…I’d say double the horsepower or possibly triple wouldn’t be out of the question….

  16. Ian says:

    Aren’t those tires a little on the slippery side?

  17. Mike says:

    theres more on these at

    someday I’ll get my LJ10 running…

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