2018 Suzuki Swift Sport
Introduced in 2000 as the Suzuki Ignis, the Swift was redesigned in 2004 and again in 2010 when the third-generation model was launched. In 2017, Suzuki brought the fourth-generation into the spotlight with the company’s brand-new design language, which debuted on the slightly bigger Baleno. Unveiled for the European market at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show, the new Swift received its higher-performance Sport version a few months later, at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show.
Developed as a higher performance version aimed at similar offerings from Volkswagen and Ford, the Swift Sport has been around since 2005. The recipe was pretty much simple and revolved mostly around a slightly more powerful engine and a few chassis tweaks. Unlike hot-hatches like the Volkswagen Polo GTI and Ford Fiesta ST, the Swift Sport didn’t really stand out in the lineup styling-wise. But this changes with the new hatchback, which gained a more individual appearance and even a range of unique features. Let’s find out more about that in the review below.
Continue reading to learn more about the Suzuki Swift Sport.
New Suzuki Swift Puts On Aggressive Suit In Frankfurt
While most Japanese automakers are enjoying success in both the United States and Europe, Suzuki hasn’t been doing particularly well in recent years. But that’s not to say that it hasn’t been trying. The last couple of years brought three brand-new Suzuki vehicles into dealerships — the Ignis, Baleno, and Swift — and the Japanese firm may be on its way to a better future, at least in some markets. Come 2017 and Suzuki is pushing things a bit further with a redesigned version of the Swift Sport.
The higher performance version of the small hatchback broke cover at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show, and it’s more appealing than ever. The new Swift design is perfect for the hot hatch treatment, and even though the performance might not be on par with the likes of the Polo GTi, the Swift Sport sure looks like it could outgun the competition. Of course, looks won’t it help it go faster, but it’s a significant progression compared to previous iterations of the Swift Sport. And, it’s worth looking into.
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2017 Suzuki Swift
Introduced in 2000 as the Suzuki Ignis, the Swift was redesigned in 2004 and again in 2010 when the familiar third-generation model was launched. In 2017, the Swift passed into its fourth generation and received the company’s brand-new design language, which debuted on the Baleno hatchback. The redesigned Swift was launched in Japan in late December 2016 and made its European debut at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show.
Much like the Baleno, the new Swift is a big step forward in terms of styling. Unlike the third-gen car, which was a mildly revised version of the second-gen model, the new Swift boasts a new design language. In short, Suzuki finally dropped the styling cues it introduced all the way back in 2004 and moved the hatchback into the 21st century design-wise. The new Swift also rides on new underpinnings. Shared with the Baleno, the platform is about 15 percent lighter and increases body rigidity by about ten percent. The new platform should provide better driving dynamics and help the hatchback return improved fuel economy, a decisive factor in this highly contested niche.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Suzuki Swift.
The new Suzuki Swift Is Lighter and More Fuel Efficient
Although not the best looking and most practical car out there, the Suzuki Swift has been a popular choice in some European market thanks to its affordable sticker and cheap maintenance. It has fallen a bit too far behind the competition in recent years, but the new-generation Swift that just made its European debut at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show should put Suzuki back on the map in the challenging subcompact hatchback segment.
As we learned back in December 2016 when the car made its global debut in Japan, the new Swift is a big step forward in terms of styling, following in the footsteps for the similarly sized Baleno. The hatchback also rides on new underpinnings that are about 15 percent lighter and provide better driving dynamics and help improve fuel economy.
The dated styling of the previous Swift is finally gone, replaced by modern features and an overall sportier stance. The smaller headlamps, the larger grille, and the dynamic looking front bumper give the Swift a front fascia that can stand out next to any other competitor in this segment. Although simple, the rear section feels fresh and practical at the same time, with the wider tailgate providing easier access to the trunk.
The cabin is also a big improvement over the previous design. The larger infotainment screen, the round A/C vents and the sportier instrument cluster make the Swift a nice place to spend time in. Tech includes a new infotainment system with Apple CarPlay connectivity, maps, music, and USB port.
As usual, motivation is provided by small-displacement engines, starting with the 1.2-liter Dualijet rated at 89 horsepower and 89 pound-feet. The 1.0-liter, three-cylinder Boosterjet with 109 horses and 125 pound-feet is available in the more expensive trims. Just like the Baleno, the Swift uses the SHVS mild hybrid system with lower emissions. Suzuki also introduced a revised version of its AllGrip Auto four-wheel-drive system, which transfers additional torque to the rear wheels when required via a viscous coupling.
Pricing is not yet available, but the new Swift goes on sale in the U.K. on June 1st.
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Toyota and Suzuki in Talks to Form New Alliance
It’s been just a few days since the Renault-Nissan Alliance revealed that it’s about to buy an important share in Mitsubishi and include the brand in their partnership, and yet another possible cooperation has been announced. Specifically, Toyota and Suzuki unveiled that they have agreed to start "exploring ideas that are directed towards a business partnership."
Both brands state that a collaboration may help them solve their respective challenges, as well as well as catch up with other alliances when it comes to standardization and sharing of know-how and technology. Toyota and Suzuki also claim that they will be open to other companies regarding this collaboration idea. What’s more, both companies said that they will continue to compete with each other in a "fair and independent manner." On the other hand, neither automaker said when this possible cooperation might come into effect.
“As the environment which surrounds the automobile industry has been changing drastically, we need to have the ability to respond to changes in order to survive. In addition to the R&D which each company is working on individually, it is very important now to have partners who share the same goal and passion," said Akio Toyoda, president of Toyota, while Suzuki chairman Osamu Suzuki also confirmed that talks are already underway.
One of the larger automakers in the world, Toyota current owns a majority stake in Daihatsu and Hino Motors, as well as significant shares of Fuji Heavy Industries, owner of Subaru, and Isuzu. The Japanese company has local joint ventures with FAW, PSA/Peugeot-Citroen, and Guangzhou Automobile Group. Suzuki, on the other hand, owns more than 50 percent of Maruti Suzuki and has joint ventures with Chongqing and Jiangxi in China. It also has assembly contracts with Fiat Chrysler Automobile, Mazda, and Nissan in Europe and Asia.
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Suzuki Caught Concealing Millions in Income Over Last Two Years
In case you haven’t noticed, automakers are running rampant with deception. Of course, there’s the whole Volkswagen situation, and then Mitsubishi came under fire for its fuel economy scandal. Now, yet another automaker has been caught with their pants down, only this time, it doesn’t involve emissions or fuel economy. This time, we’re talking about Suzuki’s inability to follow Japanese tax laws and illegally concealing ¥300 million or about $2.92 million in income over the last two years through March of 2015.
According to the Japan Times, the Nagoya Regional Taxation Bureau found that the company had been treating old parts for motorcycles as actual costs instead of inventory, ultimately pretending to have used the parts while hanging on to them the entire time. The problem is that, under the Japan’s current tax rules, all unused parts must be treated as inventory unless they are used, or disposed of, at which point they can be scratched off as cost.
A Suzuki Motor official said, “We had miscommunications within our company and also didn’t have enough knowledge about tax affairs. Although there was a difference of opinions (with tax authorities), we filed corrected tax reports and paid all of the money levied.”
In addition to this disregard to the nation’s tax laws, the company was also found to have not declared ¥1.2 billion because of accounting errors as well as booking a portion of development costs prior to the projects actually being completed – yet another clear violation of tax regulations. All of this comes not long after Suzuki, like Mitsubishi, was found to have fudged its fuel efficiency numbers on some vehicles too. According to an “unnamed source that is close to the matter,” the company has paid ¥450 million or nearly $4.3 million in back taxes and fines so far.
Five Indian-Market Cars Fail Horribly During Global NCAP Crash Testing
It’s not a secret that the U.S. and Europe of some pretty strict safety regulations for vehicles, but there are other markets that have very low or even non-existent safety regulations for cars. One such market is the Indian market, where new car safety standards are minimal at best, with Global NCAP calling them “Clearly sub-standard” in a recent media release. And that brings me to our conversation today – the five Indian-market vehicles from Renault, Maruti-Suzuki, Mahindra, and Hyundai that recently failed Global NCAP testing.
See, in the Indian Market, airbags aren’t required, and up until October of 2017, front and side impact testing isn’t a requirement for new cars on the market. Talk about driving blind, right? Safety structures that are designed to crumple in certain areas help to eliminate injury to front adult passengers, but that clearly isn’t enough protection – especially for a market where driver’s like to do interesting stunts like drive on two wheels while rotating tires (don’t act like you haven’t seen at least one of those videos that have gone viral in the past.)
These failures in safety aren’t exactly a new problem, as Indian-market cars have been disappointing on that front for a while, but we decided to take a look at all of the videos anyway. Continue reading to the crash test videos for each Indian model that was tested, and be happy that you weren’t the test dummy.
Continue reading to learn more about the crash test results
Minivans are not often thought of as being particularly cool. The result has been a decline in sales as the many image-conscious parents out there flock to crossovers instead. As a result, minivan concept vehicles are often completely bonkers, as carmakers clearly hope that going so far in the other direction will inspire buyers to reconsider the segment. It never really seems to work but it’s hugely entertaining to watch, and the new Air Triser concept from Suzuki exemplifies everything that makes wacky minivan concepts so great.
The concept is being unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show, as a part of the “Suzuki Next 100” theme for the carmaker’s booth. Since Suzuki’s 100th anniversary is coming up in 2020, it is using this opportunity to show off a bit of what is said to make up the lineup for the outset of the next 100 years. The concepts are therefore wild and futuristic, although they are simultaneously retro in their design. This is seen especially in the front fascia of the Air Triser. But unlike the Mighty Deck concept, which is clearly just an updated version of the Mighty Boy kei car, the Air Triser isn’t made to look like anything specific from Suzuki’s past.
Continue reading to learn more about the Suzuki Air Traiser.
The Tokyo Motor Show is one of the more entertaining in the automotive world. The show concentrates primarily on the Japanese domestic market, so although the cars shown there might not be especially relevant to the rest of the world, they are a great way to see something different from the kinds of concepts that we’ll be seeing, say, at the Detroit Auto Show. We also get to see some cars from manufacturers that sell cars in North America, of which Suzuki is now one. The carmaker will be celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2020, and it brought a handful of concepts to the Tokyo show what is planned for the next 100 years.
One of these is the Mighty Deck concept, a utilitarian supermini named for its useful, if quite small, rear deck. The name and design of the car are heavily influenced by the old Suzuki Mighty Boy, a hilariously named kei car built from 1983 to 1988. The design was updated, and a substantial amount of wood was added inside and out, but it is obvious where the idea came from. The Mighty Boy was never a huge success, hence the short production life, but there was a charm to it, and in turn to the new Mighty Deck.
Continue reading to learn more about the Suzuki Mighty Deck Concept.
Discontinued in 2008 after only eight years in production, the Suzuki Ignis is about to make as a more modern mini SUV. Previewed by the IM-4 concept at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show, the production model will make its official debut at the 2015 Tokyo Auto Show in October. Although Suzuki released a handful of photos of the new crossover, official details are still in the vault. However, the Japanese have already prepared a new concept car based on the Ignis, which will also be showcased in Tokyo in less than a month.
Dubbed Ignis Trail, the concept "expands upon the Ignis concept of urban and outdoor versatility by offering even greater rough-road ruggedness." In other words, it’s a more off-road capable version of the Ignis that, if put into production, will allow drivers to tackle more than just the potholes of crowded city streets.
Suzuki didn’t say whether it plans to put the Ignis Trail in production, but if it does, it might have what it takes to give the Jeep Renegade a run for its money. We should find out more at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show so make sure you stick around for details. Meanwhile, check out my speculative review below.
Continue reading to learn more about the Suzuki Ignis Trail Concept.
2016 Suzuki S-Cross
Suzuki first launched the SX4 in 2006, offering the affordable compact in both a five-door hatchback and a four-door sedan body style. Then in October of 2013, the Japanese brand decided to revamp the nameplate for the second-generation changeover, ushering in the five-door SportBack model and creating Suzuki’s first-ever C-segment crossover. But now, the SX4 is need of an update, and with that in mind, Suzuki has released a face-lifted iteration for the 2016 model year. Included with the refresh is a styling overhaul, loads of infotainment gear, and a broad portfolio of gas and diesel engine options.
Unfortunately, Suzuki said it was discontinuing U.S. sales back in 2012, but the automaker continues to perform well internationally, especially with regards to the SX4. Also known as the Maruti in select Asian markets, the SX4 is one of the automaker’s most important models.
So what did Suzuki do to keep this compact crossover feeling fresh? Read on for the details.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2016 Suzuki SX4 S-Cross.
Suzuki unveiled two concept cars at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show, the 2015 Suzuki IK-2 and the 2015 Suzuki IM-4, which previewed a subcompact hatchback and a mini crossover, respectively. While the IK-2 has already made its debut in production form as the 2016 Suzuki Baleno, the IM-4 is still under development, albeit in its final stages, as an official debut has been announced for the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show in October.
Confirmed to hit the market with an Ignis badge, the new crossover if part of Suzuki’s new expansion plan to include six models by the end of the decade. Originally believed to have been developed to replace the aging Jimny, the Ignis will have its own place in the Suzuki lineup, as the Jimny is slated to hang around until 2018, when it will be replaced by a redesigned model.
Granted, the Jimny and the Ignis are very similar in size, but it’s not surprising that Suzuki will sell them at the same time. After all, the new Baleno is only slightly bigger than the Swift, with the two basically competing in the same niche. From the looks of things, the Ignis has set its sight on the 2013 Fiat Panda 4x4, also a competitor for the Jimny.
Updated 09/30/2015: Suzuki announced its new compact car will be in fact called "Ignis" and it will be unveiled at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show.
Continue reading to learn more about the Suzuki IM-4.
The new Suzuki Baleno showed up at the at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show showing off lots of DNA that it borrowed from the Suzuki IK-2 Concept that debuted at the Geneva Auto Show. Compared to the concept, the new Baleno isn’t far off at all. It isn’t quite as sporty on the exterior as the concept, but it features the same headlights, front grille, side profile, and a toned down rear end. Inside, there are a few subtle hints that point back to the Suzuki Swift, however, the interior is smooth and pleasant. There is a large touch-screen display with Apple CarPlay smartphone connectivity, a partially digital instrument cluster, simplified center console, and decent fit and finish. Under the hood, the new Baleno features a 109-horsepower, three-cylinder engine or an 80-horsepower, four-cylinder engine.
As a “supermini” or subcompact, the Baleno competes against the likes of the Volkswagen Polo and Ford Fiesta, to name a couple. As such, the Baleno has some big shoes to fill if it’s going to be successful in such a competitive market. It does feature a sporty enough exterior and a nice enough interior to keep up, but that only goes so far, considering most competitors in this market offer up trim levels with significantly more horsepower. Of course, Suzuki hasn’t exactly been known for its performance in four-wheel vehicles, so that shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise.
So, will the new Suzuki Baleno be able to tear off its own chunk of the market? Only time will tell, but for now, you can check out our full review below.
Continue reading to learn more about the Suzuki Baleno.
With the Suzuki Jimny being a bit long in the tooth and the crossover and SUV market booming in recent years, the Japanese carmaker decided to bring a funky-looking supermini crossover to the 2015 Geneva Motor Show. Called iM-4, the concept was shown alongside the iK-2 supermini, both featuring a new Suzuki platform.
Unlike the lionhearted Jimny, whose current generation is heading toward its 20th birthday in 2018, the iM-4 Concept is a lot less rugged- and more urban-looking, not to mention that it features five doors instead of just three. With a "love it or hate it" exterior design that harks back to Kei cars like the Suzuki Fronte Coupé and the first-generation Cervo, the model could make quite a splash in the segment if it gets produced with a similar look.
Updated 03/03/2015: Suzuki iM-4 concept car made its world debut at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show. It features a new-generation platform and a SHVS mild hybrid system.
Click "Continue Reading" to read my full preview of the 2015 Suzuki iM-4 Concept.
Debuting at the 2015 Geneva Auto Show alongside the iM-4 crossover, the Suzuki iK-2 is apparently previewing a more upscale brother to the Swift. Unlike the iM-4, which gives a foretaste of a mini crossover that could become a successor to the Suzuki Jimny, the iK-2 is aimed at a more crowded segment that is currently being led by the Volkswagen Polo and Ford Fiesta in Europe. Sure, the Swift is already somewhat competing against those, but the production version of the iK-2 would be slightly larger and a bit more upmarket in both features and pricing.
Most reports are already suggesting that the concept is almost production-ready, with the European version to be built in Hungary, while the Asian version would be sold under the Maruti brand in India. Countries like Japan, Thailand and Malaysia would also get similar versions.
Click "Continue Reading" to learn more about the Suzuki iK-2 Concept.
The Vitara, one of Suzuki’s most iconic vehicles, was launched in 1988 as a compact SUV. Dubbed Escudo in Japan and Sidekick in the United States, the small crossover came to North America for the 1989 model year. The Vitara name, mostly used in Europe and some South American and Asian market, was introduced in the United States starting 1999. That’s when the second-gen Vitara was born as a slightly larger, pricier and more powerful version of the first-gen model. A replacement was developed for 2005, but the current Grand Vitara has very little in common with the original concept. For 2015, however, the Vitara nameplate is making a surprising return to its roots, as it’s pinned as a compact SUV destined to compete against the Nissan Juke.
Set to break cover at the 2014 Paris Motor Show in October, the brand-new Vitara promises to have "a striking road presence," a "distinctive design," and numerous personalization options, the latter a feat Suzuki rarely offers. So is the Vitara signaling the Japanese are reinventing themselves? It’s a bit too early to draw a conclusion, but the compact SUV is definitely a new approach for a company such as Suzuki.
Click past the jump to read more about the Suzuki Vitara
The Suzuki Swift debuted in 2000, but its roots stretch back to the debut of the Cultus in 1983, which was rebadged as the Swift in countries other than Japan. The second-gen Swift hit the market in 2004 and the third — and current — generation launched in 2010. Heading into the 2014 model year, the Swift receives a new SZ-L Special Edition that receives some fancy paint work.
Oh, look. It’s a Suzuki. More importantly, or at least in this particular instance, it’s a Suzuki Swift SZ-L Special Edition! Wait, this is a special edition model?
The term "Special Edition" is supposed to apply to something truly special. Unfortunately, the automotive industry is prone to abusing this term, so we are not surprised to hear that this "special edition" Suzuki isn’t really all that special.
This Swift SZ-L does have features that standard Swift models don’t have, so we have to give Suzuki some credit here. Suzuki is packaging the Swift SZ-L Special Edition by adding an exclusive two-tone metallic paint finish with a choice of either a Boost Blue or a Cosmic Black hue. Both colors come with a contrasting Cool White roof, not to mention a rear spoiler, and door mirrors.
And...that’s about it.
Click past the jump to read more about the Suzuki Swift SZ-L Special Edition.
Suzuki unveiled the IV-4 — a concept car that previews a new crossover that will replace the Grand Vitara — at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show. And now our spy photographers caught a prototype of the production version is out testing.
As you can see, the prototype is heavily camouflaged, so it’s pretty difficult to know what is hiding beneath. Still, considering an SX4 was testing next to it, and that it was wearing the typical Suzuki camo, it pretty evident that this is s Suzuki crossover of some sort, likely the next-gen Grand Vitara.
This new Grand Vitara will use Suzuki’s latest ALLGRIP four-wheel-drive system, but it will also come in your basic front-wheel-drive setup.
Suzuki promised that this new crossover will lightest model in its class, with lowest fuel consumption and the lowest CO2 emissions.
Though we are not 100-percent certain that this new crossover will carry the Grand Vitara name, we are pretty sure that we’ll see it in 2015. Sorry U.S. buyers, Suzuki does not plan to sell it, or any other model, in the U.S. any time soon...
Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Suzuki Grand Vitara.
The 2013 SEMA Show bursting at the seams with wildly styled cars for the American market, and the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show seems to be doing the same for the Asian market. Suzuki seems to be the automaker leading the charge in wild concepts heading to Tokyo show.
The second concept car developed by Suzuki for the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show is the Crosshiker. This concept carries on where the G70 — a concept unveiled at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show — left off. Just like the G70, the new Crosshiker is a concept vehicle that focuses on weight reduction and highly-efficient powertrains.
The new Crosshiker, just like a large number of other Suzuki concepts hitting the show floor in Tokyo, is part of the company’s new "Let’s Create a Brand New Story" theme, and is based on the "Small Cars for a Big Future" slogan.
The Crosshiker is the perfect proof that Suzuki is serious about developing the small car of the future, as it is a compact crossover that weights only 810 kg (1,785 pounds). It also features a sleek body to allow air to flow easily over it, keeping drag to a minimum.
Under the hood of the Crosshiker sits an all-new 1.0-liter, three-cylinder engine that would likely make a smart fortwo puff out its chest. This petite powerplant, according to Suzuki, "strikes a good balance between power and environmental performance."
Sure, it’ll never see a showroom floor, but it shows that Suzuki, which recently pulled its automobiles from the U.S. market, still has a little fight left in it.
Click past the jump to read more about the Suzuki Crosshiker.
Here in the U.S., we are getting ready for the 2013 SEMA show and the Los Angeles Auto Show, on the opposite side of the world in Japan, folks are getting ready for the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show, which takes place from November 23rd to December 1st, 2013.
It looks like Suzuki one automaker that is taking this show very seriously, as it will unveil four brand-new concept cars and several motorcycles. All of the concepts are part of the company’s new "“Let’s Create a Brand New Story" theme, and are based on the "Small Cars for a Big Future" slogan.
The first concept — called the X-Lander — is based on the small Suzuki Jimny, and it looks more like a toy rather than a real car. The concept was designed as a four-wheel-drive hybrid vehicle, so it is ideal for crowded cities or hard off-road driving.
Click past the jump to read more about the Suzuki X-Lander concept.
We have known for quite some time now that Suzuki plans to expand its lineup with a new crossover model that will take on the Nissan Juke and other compact crossovers. Few details are known on this new model, but the company unveiled a new iV-4 concept car at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show that will preview Suzuki’s new SUV lineup.
The new iV-4 concept will be developed around a new theme called "Grab your field" and it will will retain the clam-shell bonnet and five-bar front grille that have become a hallmark of its SUVs.
As for the concept’s name, "i" stands for "individuality", "V" for "vehicle", and "4" for "4 wheel-drive" as it features Suzuki’s next ALLGRIP four-wheel drive system.
Updated 09/10/2013: This review has been updated with the official details, images and specs.
Click past the jump to read more about the Suzuki iV-4.
Click past the jump to read more about the Suzuki iV-4 competitors.