Tag Archive | "Suzuki"

Suzuki SX4 S-Cross – Quality And Value.

Earlier this year Motor Blogger found himself in the Suzuki display at a major trade event. MB came away impressed and, as a consequence, managed to arrange to have the featured car for a whole week – a Suzuki SX4 S-Cross in top-of-the-range SZ5 trim.

Interested parties can get this car in one of four grades and trim levels with a choice of two engines: a Fiat derived 1.6L turbo-diesel or an in-house 1.6L petrol unit. Buyers can choose between two-wheel drive or – a must, I reckon – the AllGrip four-wheel option. Suzuki have this 4×4 business sorted I believe and it turns what could be seen as just another regular family crossover in the ever- growing pack of similar offerings into something much more versatile.

MB1 Suzuki SX4 S Cross   Quality And Value.It’s no mud-plugger obviously, but for sure-footed peace of mind in our sometimes challenging winter driving conditions on our ‘craters of the moon’ roads, it is worth stumping up for the extra costs involved. There are four driver selected options available. The car will run normally as a two-wheel front driver in Auto, but this can be shifted on the fly into Sport mode which engages the rear wheels and slightly boosts engine performance (you can feel the extra 500rpm kick in). The AllGrip system diverts 20% more of the 320Nm of torque to rear wheels and when driving around the more difficult stretches of my test route at pace, I appreciated the extra power and grip.

When the going gets tougher or when the dreaded white stuff makes an unwelcome appearance then the beleaguered driver can switch to the Mud/Snow option which enhances traction and stability. Finally, the Lock mode distributes high torque to the rear wheels continually, ideal for extricating the car from deeper snow and the like. It’s a good system, it is easy to use and it works.

Our featured car was fitted with the diesel engine. Setting off, acceleration is a bit pedestrian as you’d expect and, if I’m honest, a tad grumbly in operation but once you get it rolling it’s fine and indeed feels very willing to crack on. When the car was delivered it had achieved 61.9mpg thanks obviously to some smooth driving in 2WD mode. That’s good. In my hands however no car is allowed any slackness or back-sliding – they have to work. The SX4 spent most of its time in the Sport option yet still managed to achieve a splendid 50mpg on average whilst still only coughing up a modest 114g/km of emissions.

mb2 Suzuki SX4 S Cross   Quality And Value.It is really good to drive. Many people have to buy the cars they need rather than the cars they want so isn’t it great when a car that is functional and versatile can also be entertaining to drive. The ride quality impressed as did the lack of roll in corners.

All SX4 S-Cross SZ3 models are equipped as standard with seven airbags, ESP and Tyre Pressure Monitoring as well as Daytime Running Lights (DRL), 16-inch alloy wheels, cruise control with speed limiter, air conditioning, heated door mirrors, black protective skid plates and black wheel arch extensions. SZ4 adds 17-inch alloy wheels finished in dark grey, Dual Zone automatic air conditioning, front fog lamps, Bluetooth connectivity, rear privacy glass, silver roof rails and silver skid plates.

SZ-T (the one for business and fleet users with BIK of 18%) adds satellite navigation (a bit below par, it has to be said) with DAB radio, polished 17-inch alloy wheels, rear parking camera and rear parking proximity sensors and chrome styling package. Equipment for the top of the range SZ5 model we are featuring includes front parking sensors, leather seat upholstery, double sliding panoramic sunroof and HID projector headlamps with AUTO function. There’s a range of eight exterior colours. The aforementioned sunroof (it opens) is a highlight, making the interior bright and airy but if you want to shut out the weather there’s an electrically operated blind.

The boot is big and very adaptable. Inside, I found the seats comfortable, with tons of legroom front and back, and the driving position adaptable. Sure, on the cheaper models there are some plastics but that must be expected; in any case the Suzuki appeared well screwed together.

This car costs between around £14,000 and (for our car) £22,720 and there are deals. For what you get that’s great value. There is a car from another brand that is considered the benchmark in this sector – the small SUV by which all others are judged. In my opinion, the Suzuki SX4 S-Cross SZ5, as tested, is the equal of the other (better looking too) and, crucially, cheaper by almost £3k at the range-topper. Well worth considering.

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Super Suzuki Swift Sport

Every so often a car comes along that, apart from meeting expectations, has a certain something extra. At first sight of the Suzuki Swift Sport it looks like fun. From the chunky rear end with its big spoiler and twin exhausts right through to the sleek front end, it ticks all the boxes for a small hot hatch. If indeed it was a small hot hatch but it isn’t. No matter, it remains a highly entertaining motor. 136bhp from the willing 1.6L engine isn’t really at the cutting edge of blistering performance but, curiously, it doesn’t matter.

This is one of the best-handling superminis you can buy. Despite only having 136bhp from the willing 1.6L engine, out on the road it is great to drive, sounds throaty and delivers plenty of smiles per hour. Twisting turning B roads are it’s stamping ground. The naturally aspirated engine is only a modest performer when you compare it to the opposition but that is part of the enjoyment as the driver needs to work at the six-speed gearbox and keep those revs spinning. The steering is accurate and direct, the brakes are more than capable and sporty dampers keep the handling flat and supple.sw2 Super Suzuki Swift Sport

Safe too, and possibly the ideal starting point for the keen new driver with deeper pockets. As you’d expect the car features ABS, EBD and ESP and there’s plenty of airbags. The back seats are, as you’d expect, a bit tight for adults but better than you might think just by looking. Plenty of room for the kids though.

In fact, everything comes as standard. This five-door version has a list price of £14,499 ( there are deals around though) and includes, well, everything really. In other words, all the options you want are standard fit. Cruise, Bluetooth, Sat-Nav, connectivity, 17” alloys, keyless entry, a cracking steering wheel with controls to name a few. Some of the plastics are bit on the cheap side but, crucially, there is no scrimping on the very well bolstered seats. Basically, everything is stylish and well bolted together. The Suzuki Swift Sport is a bit of a bargain, I reckon, and with up to 44mpg on the combined figure it should be pretty economical too.

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Geneva Choice

As well as the desirable examples entering the automotive market that we have already featured on Motor Blogger, there are also plenty of other new cars worthy of our attention at this year‘s Geneva show. The selection is diverse and has plenty to offer all price points and sectors.

For example, we have already heard a lot about the budget brand Dacia and the decent value for money cars they offer. Joining the ranks in the UK market now is the Logan. Essentially, this is an estate car version of the Sandero which will be priced from about £7000, which is excellent value for a family sized car that is a similar size to the Volvo V70.

The Logan is offered with the same range of engines as its hatchback siblings, including a 1.5L diesel which busts the 100g/km CO² barrier. For the cost-conscious driver who needs some decent carrying capacity (better than a Focus estate) this car seems like a great choice.

On the Honda stand there is more about their Earth Dreams Technology. No, it’s not some sort of return to a mystical pagan past but rather just a name for their equivalent of BMW’s ‘EfficientDynamics’ or Volkswagen’s ‘Bluemotion’ eco-strategies. It’s centred around Honda’s 1.6L I-DTEC diesel engine, first seen in the new Civic. This time it is in the company’s British built CR-V which will deliver a balance between efficient performance and functionality. It looks good too.

Suzuki are a car maker who perhaps don’t really get the credit they deserve. They have been plugging away on the British forecourts for years without actually setting the market on fire. They have made some good cars and their current Swift is a popular choice in the press. Maybe with the new SX4 Crossover (pictured) they will get a bit more attention from the buying public.

This new model is bigger than its predecessor and has moved into the popular C sector by increasing in size. It combines compact car know-how with the Suzuki technology honed for SUVs. To be built in Hungary the SX4 will be on sale from the Autumn.

Finally, Chevrolet are showing a selection that includes the Spark EV and a new upscale Captiva. Sales of the Trax will start this Spring but for petrol- heads the biggest news is of the new Corvette Stingray. This is powered by a 6.2L V8 which shoves out a muscle-bound 450bhp. Totally impractical for Britain’s third world roads of course but we want one anyway. In black, please.

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