THE first Suzuki to break the £40,00 barrier will be on sale in November as the company launches its new Across plug-in hybrid.
With a price tag of £45,599 the Across is one of the most fuel-efficient SUVs on the market and in the same league as the Range Rover Evoque and Mitsubishi Outlander PHEVs.
It's not only Suzuki's first plug-in hybrid it is also the first model to come from a joint venture with Toyota which sees the Across based on the soon-to-come plug-in version of the RAV4.
The Across has an official CO2 rating of just 22g/km and an electric only range of 46 miles which outstrips its competitors by some margin.
For business users it has a benefit in kind taxation rate of six per cent which for a 40 per cent tax payer equates to a charge of £91 per month - £86 cheaper than the plug-in Outlander and £67 below that of the Evoque P300e.
It will come in one high specification grade which includes leather seats, heated front and rear seats, heated steering wheel, dual zone automatic air conditioning, automatic opening tailgate and a nine-inch multimedia touchscreen.
Suzuki says that supply of the Across will be limited in its first year on sale and it will be followed by another car from the Toyota collaboration - the Swace which is to be built in Britain and based on the Corolla hybrid estate.
The Across is powered by a 2.5-litre petrol engine linked to electric motors which not only power the rear wheels to give 4x4 ability but also healthy performance with a 0 to 60 time of six seconds. Total power output is 306 horsepower and the top speed is 112mph.
Official fuel consumption is 282mpg while luggage space at 490 litres is generous for plug-in SUVs.
Various drive modes are available for the powertrain to aid not only its electric operation but also the Across's off-road abilities which sees a Trail setting that uses an automatic limited slip differential to maximise grip.
Safety features include a lane tracing system and a radar based cruise control set up that is backed up by a camera to monitor traffic.
Suzuki's current most expensive models are the S-Cross and Vitara SUV which top out at around £26,000.