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2009 Suzuki Equator

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2009 Suzuki Equator Review

New midsize pickup truck that deserves serious consideration.

Reviewed by Automotive on


2009 saw the launch of the Equator, Suzuki’s first pickup truck. The 2009 Suzuki Equator was assembled by Nissan and based on the Nissan Frontier. When Suzuki created its version of the midsize pickup truck, it included features that are not found on the Nissan Frontier.

The Range

Body Styles: two-door midsize pickup truck, four-door midsize pickup truck
Engines: 2.5-liter four-cylinder, four-liter V-6
Transmissions: five-speed manual, five-speed automatic
Models: Equator (extended and crew cab), Equator Comfort (extended cab), Equator Premium (extended cab), Equator Sport (extended and crew cab), Equator RMZ-4 (crew cab), Equator RMZ-4 Sport (crew cab)

What's New

With the new 2009 Suzuki Equator, there are two cab styles to choose from: the four-seater extended cab and the five-seater crew cab. Both cab styles have four trim lines. Depending on the cab style and trim level, there are two different engine options available, as well as a manual or automatic transmission fitted as standard.

All 2009 Suzuki Equator crew cab models come with the V-6 engine and automatic transmission as standard. The base, Comfort, and Premium extended cab models are equipped with the four-cylinder engine with manual transmission.


While the platform used for both the Nissan Frontier and the 2009 Suzuki Equator is the same, the exterior is styled differently. The general dimensions of both pickups are similar, but the 2009 Suzuki Equator has trims to differentiate the two.

The extended cab version has a six-foot bed, while the crew cab model has a five-foot bed. The Sport trim line for the crew cab models can be fitted with a six-foot bed as an option. Both cab styles have four doors, although the rear doors of the extended cab do not open independently from the front doors. The rear doors for the extended cab models are reverse-opening doors that are opened once the front doors are opened. The crew cab models have four full-size, independent doors.


The 2009 Suzuki Equator interior has an attractive design with controls laid out in an intuitive and easy-to-use manner. Materials are about the same as in other midsize pickups in the class. The front seats are roomy and comfortable, while the amount of luxury varies in the rear, based on the cab style.

The seats in the rear area of the extended cab are flip-down jump seats that are not designed for comfort. Space is quite limited in this area and most adults will find it cramped. The cabin in the rear of the crew cab is significantly larger. The full-size doors and seats make it significantly roomier and more comfortable than in extended cab models.

Performance & Handling

Two 2009 Suzuki Equator engine options are available: the 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine produces 152 horsepower and 171 lb-ft of torque, while the four-liter, V-6 engine has a power output of 261 horsepower and 281 lb-ft of torque. All crew cabs and those equipped with four-wheel drive are fitted with the V-6 engine only. The four-cylinder engine is coupled with a five-speed manual transmission as standard or an optional five-speed automatic. The V-6 comes with the automatic transmission only.

For those looking for a cheaper pickup with slightly better gas mileage, the 2009 Suzuki Equator four-cylinder models may be a good option. For most, the additional power of the V-6 will be the preference. Acceleration from a stop is good, and the engine provides the necessary thrust when on the highway. The ride is smooth and engine noise is not very loud. Steering is precise and reactive, although not great for tight turns and maneuverability.


The 2009 Suzuki Equator scored well in front and side impacts crash tests for both the extended cab and crew cab models. Standard safety equipment found on all models includes anti-lock brakes, front side airbags, and full-length side curtain airbags. Sport models have traction control installed, while the RMZ-4 is the only model equipped with stability control.

EPA Fuel Economy

Equator Comfort extended cab: 19/23 mpg city/highway
Equator Premium extended cab: 17/22 mpg city/highway
Equator Sport extended cab: 15/20 mpg city/highway
Equator Base, Sport crew cab: 15/20 mpg city/highway
Equator RMZ-4, RMZ-4 Sport crew cab: 15/19 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • Acceleration and power of V-6 engine
  • Sturdy feel when driving
  • Off-road capability

You Won't Like

  • Rear seat room
  • Poor fuel economy
  • Maneuverability

Sum Up

New midsize pickup truck that deserves serious consideration.

If You Like This Vehicle

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  • Nissan Frontier