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  • Zukiman
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Suzuki History and Rollover Data...
This was taken from a Lawyers site, but most of the data is historically correct...

Looks at the stats on who rolled the vehicles, gee it is kind of hard to say that the Samurai is so dangerous when most of the drivers were under 25 and half had alcohol in their system...

Suzuki Samurai Rollover History

The Suzuki Samurai was first marketed in the U.S. in 1986 and was sold as a four-wheel drive light utility/sport vehicle in either a convertible or a hardtop body style. The Samurai was  marketed exclusively in the continental U.S. by Suzuki of America Automotive Corporation and in Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Island by Suzuki Motor Company, Ltd. The SJ410 was sold by Suzuki Motor Company in its marketing territory from April 1981 to the present as a four-wheel drive in a convertible, hardtop or truck configuration. The LJ80 four wheel drive vehicle was similarly marketed by Suzuki Motor Company, Ltd., from style. Neither the SJ410 nor the LJ80 were equipped with stabilizer bars or roll-bar assemblies. Even twenty years later, Suzuki vehicles appear to be some of the smallest light utility/sport vehicles ever marketed in the U.S. The LJ80 and SJ410 are more closely related to each other than to the Samurai. Although neither SJ410 are more closely related to each other than to the Samurai. Although neither SJ410 nor the LJJ80 were originally sold in the continental U.S., it appears that some of the vehicles may be have been brought into the continental U.S. from the islands or Canada.

Suzuki Samurai Rollover Concerns

When Suzuki unveiled the Samurai, safety experts were shocked that Suzuki would have introduced a vehicle with the same rollover tendencies as the AMC Jeep CV-5 and CJ-7. American Suzuki Motor Corporation however, defends the attacks, charging that the testing procedures used by Consumer Reports and others were biased and completely inaccurate and in fact called such statements concerning the Samurai's high propensity to rollover as defamatory and Suzuki claimed that the rollover tests used were altered to cause the Samurai to rollover. Consumer Reports responded that there were no alterations in the test, as it is the same test as used to test Samurai's competitors.

Suzuki Samurai Rollover Propensity - Recall Proposed

The Samurai was marketed and sold as a vehicle not for off road use, but instead for highway use. In fact the advertisement on the car buying public was showed the Samurai as a great vehicle for highway trips and commuting to work. The problem however was the vehicle has a high center of gravity and unstable driving characteristics making it not fit or suitable for day to day commuting. The high ground clearance, short wheelbase, narrow track and stiff suspension makes the Samurai somewhat tricky to handle and can behave abnormally in normal accident avoidance maneuvers.
Soon after the first Samurai's started to rollover and cause injuries and deaths, consumer groups demanded the recall of the Suzuki Samurai. The recall debate started after the vehicle was given the "not acceptable" ruling by Consumer Reports. A recall unfortunately can not make and fix the problem is inherent in its design, "The only way to fix it is to make the vehicle longer, wider and heavier." The Center for Auto Safety petitioned the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to recall the Suzuki Samurai because of safety problems. However, NHTSA on September 1, 1988, denied the request by the Center for Auto Safety to recall the Suzuki Samurai. The Agency agreed to establish a rollover standard for cars and light trucks. Suzuki's continued to sell and market the 1989 model year, with sales as low as 2,000 per month compared to 10,000-12,000 per month a year earlier.

Suzuki Samurai - Office of Defects Investigations

In August 1988, the Office of Defects Investigation with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported a review-of the 113 report Suzuki vehicle rollovers indicated the following:

1) All fatal first event Samurai rollovers involved ejection
2) The average time to failure/time of ownership was less than 8 months, ranging from 2 to 15 months
3) The driver was cited by police in approximately 50 percent of police reported rollovers
4) Alcohol was involved in 50 percent of rollovers described in police reports
5) Where the age of the driver was known, 73 percent of the reported drivers were 25 years old or younger, The oldest driver involved in a single vehicle rollover was 43 years old
6) Limited visibility due to darkness occurred in at least 58 percent of the rollovers
7) There is no seasonal influence (winter, spring, summer, or fall)
8) The average reported travel speed was 37 mph, ranging from 10 to 65 mph.
9) The average reported mileage was 13,090 miles, ranging from 1,618 to 34,000 miles
10) Female drivers accounted for 44 percent of the reported rollovers
11) Weekend rollovers accounted for 44 percent of the reports
12) California accounted for more than twice the number of rollovers as any other state (20 percent versus Florida's 9 percent)
13) A wet or icy roadway or excessively windy road conditions occurred in approximately 29 percent of the rollover

It was also determined that when a rollover occurred, the rollover was reportedly preceded by:
1. Loss of control (i.e., spun) - 25 percent
2. Left roadway, straight road - 18 percent
3. Left roadway, cornering/turning - 20 percent
4. Obstacle avoidance maneuver - 15 percent
5. Ramped (struck obstacle) - 8 percent

1993 Suzuki Samurai
1.6 EFI, 3 speed auto, 6.5:1 T-case, air lockers... and a lot more mods!
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  • Lizooki
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Re: Suzuki History and Rollover Data...
Reply #1
I ......

1-drive in the dark
2-drive in all seasons
3-can manage an average speed of 37 mph...usually
4-drive in wet or icy road conditions

I also occasionally

1-loose control...more ways than one
2-leave the straight go wheelin'
3- leave the curvy roadway...see number 2
4-avoid obstacles ..or crawl over them
5-have ramped a 741

And I ain't rolled a Samurai on the roadway ;D

Matt- sorry Kev, couldn't resist....I lost control ;D