Suzuki Swift SZ4 1.2

Suzuki Swift: long term report three

Since our last report we’ve had the Swift’s more racy and sportier bigger brother in, the Suzuki Swift Sport.

Spending a week with the hottest number in the Swift line-up and driving it back-to-back with our car provided an excellent comparison. It proved both why the Sport is so named and why we’re still so impressed with our SZ4 spec machine.

The Sport’s 1.6-litre motor produces 136hp and 118lb ft of torque, around half as many ponies again compared to our 94hp cooking car. It’s a perky, revvy little engine too, that delivers its power in a really engaging way. It eggs you on to go a bit quicker and use a few more revs with every prod of the throttle.

And the quicker you drive it the better the car feels. The ride isn’t lumpen or crashy at low speed by any means, but as your velocity elevates, so do comfort and feedback levels.

The chassis is wonderfully communicative – firm yet supple and relaying information back to the helm – it’s not hard to see why the Swift Sport has won so many awards.

The addition of a sixth ratio over our car’s standard five-speed gearbox is a welcome supplement too.

It’s not that the standard car’s transmission lacks anything with one gear less, it just gives the Sport a bit of an edge over the rest of the range in terms of performance – the closer ratios making the drop in revs between each change less. It helps cruising and improves fuel economy on the bigger engine as well.

Both vehicles are excellent value for money compared to the competition – at £13,499 for the Sport, with cruise control, automatic headlights, Bluetooth, an iPod connection, keyless entry and go and privacy glass all fitted as standard, it boasts an excellent spec.

It’s cheaper than it’s rivals too, undercutting the £13,565 Renaultsport Twingo 133, and saving £1,201, £2,500 and £3,156 over the Ford Fiesta Zetec S, Citroën DS3 and Fiat 500 Abarth respectively.

That the SZ4 Swift rings the cash register at £12,515 and boasts the same level of equipment as the Sport – offering a softer set-up for those looking for a bit more comfort and not so intent on outright performance from their supermini – is astonishing.