Sunday 17 December 2017

Suzuki expects Swift success to be repeated

Eddie Cunningham

Eddie Cunningham

WHEN you have high hopes for something, there’s nothing like pitching it from aloft.

And that’s what Suzuki did with its brand new Swift yesterday – where it unveiled the arrival from the dizzying heights of the Aviva Stadium.

Mind you, that did not stop us from getting out and about on the surrounding streets for a quick spin. The new car has a 1.2 litre petrol engine with just 116g/km (Band A) emissions in manual guise. It is 90mm longer overall and its wheelbase adds 50mm.

Impressive standard equipment includes ESP and seven airbags, while it can also boast a five-star Euro NCap rating. There is a higher GLX spec, which adds air con and alloys. Ex-works prices start at €14,650 for the 3dr GL, with the 5dr at €15,050, and 5dr GLX at €15,950 and the €17,550 for the 5dr GLX automatic (Band B emissions). Petrol consumption improves from 5.8l/100km to 5l/100km in the manual version.

The outgoing Swift won the Irish Car of the Year accolade in 2006 and became a firm favourite. Rightly so. It was a fine piece of engineering.

Suzuki sold 1,171 units in 2007 but in these straitened times, it is forecasting just 500 for next year. But that’s in a motor that has been significantly improved. So Suzuki is banking on plenty of repeat sales.

And with 2,500 Swift customers on its database (to whom Suzuki has written about the new model), it expects a lot of interest.

It is not a major visual leap on the old one, but is significantly lighter, feels quite nimble, the cabin is much smarter and the dash a lot better-looking with a touch of quality in the materials.

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