About one in three new cars bought are in what the motor industry categorises as the A and B segments.
Tom Scanlan heads to the South of France to drive the All-New Suzuki Swift
That means small cars, next up in the B segment compact supermini class we welcome Suzuki’s third generation and ALL-New Swift. It goes on sale on June 1, with prices announced in May, but they will be as competitive as ever and will be placed between Suzuki’s Ignis and Baleno models, probably from around £11,000 to £13,000.
Depending on the model you go for, Suzuki claims the new car is up to ten per cent lighter, nineteen per cent more powerful and eight per cent more efficient than the outgoing version. Suzuki designers have sought to retain the DNA of the previous Swifts in producing the new body. This New Suzuki Swift is ten millimetres shorter, but with a 20mm longer wheelbase, and is 40mm wider and 15mm lower. Therefore, there is a touch more legroom and a significantly bigger boot. The most obvious exterior new looks are in the shoulder height of the bodywork and the new treatment of the c-pillar.
The Swift is powered either by the 111PS 1-litre, 3-cylinder Boosterjet turbo engine. In the New Swift it is for the first time, a so-called ‘mild hybrid’, thanks to its use of electric power to aid starting off (except from cold, accelerating and brake regeneration). The four-cylinder Dualjet 1.2- litre with 98PS, also being in mild hybrid form is the other power choice.
Emissions from the Boosterjet are down to 104 g/km and a tax-avoiding 98 g/km in the Dualjet.
Trim levels are SZ3, SZ-T and SZ5 at the top end. SZ5 includes automatic air-conditioning, Navigation, LED headlamps, rear electric windows Dual Sensor Brake Support and Adaptive Cruise Control all over and above the lower trim levels…and your 16-inch alloy wheels now become polished.
SZ5 also gets the Advanced Forward Detection System that provides autonomous braking if a collision situation is detected. This works if not to actually prevent any impact at lower speeds, from around three miles an hour, to mitigating the impact at speeds up to 62 mph. A variety of high-tech safety features add to the New Swift’s the feel-good-factor.
Connectivity to the outside world is available via any type of smart phone working with Apple carplay and Android Auto.
Initial impressions were gained from a good drive in the south of France into Monaco. The test car was the 3-cylinder version and was pretty well tested with an all-round trial through heavy city traffic, twisty mountain roads and motorways.
One of the best features of the engine was the very useful torque that came in at around two thousand rpm and enabled the little car to deal with some very steep challenges. Going back down the hills proved that the brakes worked well, as did the steering, although this felt a bit dead in the straight ahead position.
Out on the open road, acceleration could be quite lively if you put your foot down hard, with the characteristic 3-cylinder buzz that quiets down impressively almost to no exhaust note at all when cruising at 70 mph.
The five-speed manual gearbox felt a touch rubbery on some changes, but the straight up and down motion, as in third to fourth gear, was pleasantly slick. For the Boosterjet, an automatic will also be available, along with Suzuki’s Allgrip system, when the cars go on sale on
The New Swift gave a comfortable ride and took the sharpest bends without any audible complaint – from either my passenger or the tyres!
Fuel consumption was indicated at as much as 60 mpg over the test route – a further feel good factor.
It looks like the All-New Swift will continue to add to Suzuki’s accelerating sales figures.
Car reviewed: All-New Suzuki Swift 1.0 Boosterjet manual SHVS – On the road £TBC around £11-13k 0-62mph 10.6 secs Top speed 121mph limited Fuel Economy combined 65.7mpg CO2 emissions 97g/km Engine 998cc 3-cylinder petrol EU6 Max Power 111PS@5500rpm Torque 170Nm@1700-4000rpm Transmission 5-speed manual
Characteristic 3-cylinder engine
Slightly rubbery gearchange
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