Suzuki has released European specs for its new Jimny, with the iconic 4×4 boasting improved safety kit as well as a new engine.

The Jimny has built up a loyal fan base who admire its simplistic approach and supreme off-road ability, not to mention its affordable price. Despite the Jimny making its debut nearly 50 years ago in 1970, the latest model is only the fourth iteration of the model – the last going on sale in 1998.

It’s been given a new look, with chunkier styling and improved visibility thanks to its boxy, Mercedes G-Class-esque styling. The signature round headlights remain, though, as well as other design cues from past models – including the five-slot front grille and horizonal slits in the bonnet. It features 15-inch wheels as well as the trademark spare wheel mounted on the tailgate.

A new 101bhp 1.5-litre petrol unit replaces the last car’s 1.3-litre engine, and is available with ether a five-speed manual gearbox or a four-speed auto.

One of the greatest improvements made is safety. The new model features ‘Suzuki Safety Support’ which comes with autonomous emergency braking, lane departure warning and high beam assist. Other safety tech includes hill hold control and hill descent control for off-roading, too.

And if you’re thinking the Jimny has become a bit too ‘soft’, it hasn’t, and remains true to its rugged roots. A ladder frame structure, three-link axle suspension and part-time four-wheel-drive from the ‘AllGrip Pro’ system will make it a force to contend with on the muddy stuff. It’s set to be more composed than the last on the road, too, and shouldn’t feel quite so agricultural thanks to its improved dampening and higher torsional rigidity.

A seven-inch touchscreen with Bluetooth is available on higher equipment grades, although full UK specs and prices are still to be confirmed.

The new Jimny won’t arrive in the UK until early in 2019.