Road Test: 2010 Suzuki Swift 1.6 VVTi Sport
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Road Test: 2010 Suzuki Swift 1.6 VVTi Sport

Date: 13 Sep 2010 Author Type: Registered Journalist
Author: Robert Van Wyk - Edited: Gary Mackay
Source: Robert Van Wyk - Edited: Gary Mackay
A little Tasmanian devil with a big heart is the only way I can describe the little Suzuki Swift Sport. It is fun, energetic and although not the most powerful kid in the playpen, it’s the one that has the most to offer. There is however only a hundred of these pocket rockets on offer from Suzuki SA and I don’t care for its size, each one is a gem with its typical hot hatch layout of 3 doors and up rated sporty styling.

At the heart of the Swift Sport is a 4 cylinder, 1600 non turbo charged petrol engine using the more common VVTi technology that produces a rather cheeky 92 kW at its maximum 6800rpm, and then the average but reasonable torque of 148 Nm from around 4800rpm. Although the engine itself is a bit of a screamer that needs to be driven just that little bit harder it is responsive and lively throughout its rev range. Drive is to the front wheels and although you have ESP it is easy to light up the tires from a standing start to a sprint. 0 to 100km/h is claimed to be at about 8.9 seconds with a top speed of 200km/h which is good for the Suzuki as most of its bigger rivals in this class will battle to come close.
The gearbox is a solid and sporty 5-speed manual, with a nice notchy, snappy short shift feel to it. Each gear change is direct and with the weighted clutch and more immediate throttle response it makes dashing through traffic a breeze. Suzuki has also tinkered with the Electro-Mechanical steering making it slightly heavier and so with its tighter ratio it again gives the Swift Sport a more responsive sporty feel to it.

The light weight suspension is backed up with improved gas shocks and the tyre rim combination boasts some 17 inch, 195/45 premium tyres, but the handling can still be a little spongy and the Swift Sport did understeer and drift wide under power in a turn. But understeer is not a bad thing and with the right amount of “shadow play” with the throttle the Swift is so much fun and very predictable through the corners, and it is only through some tight twisting turns that this Swift started feeling a little top-heavy.

The steering itself is near perfect and the rigid chassis is as good, but again with any short wheel base motorcar it tends to pitch a little more especially when using those impressive brakes. The harder shocks and “O-rings” run-flats as tyres also make the ride hard, but that’s just sporty and the overall combination should make the Swift Sport a perfect little track racer.

The sports appeal extends to the cabin with the first thing you notice are bucket seats clad in red and black heavy stitched cloth. The beefy steering wheel is similarly stitched with an equally tasteful chrome instrument cluster to match with alternating cloth and plastic bolsters to fill the remainder of the cabin. Ergonomically the cabin is functional and you have a slightly high commanding seating position which is good for all round visibility, but I would have preferred to be slightly lower just as a final touch to its overall sports package. The cabin is also spacious up front with its more square shape and gives you plenty of head and shoulder room, but getting into the back can be an expedition on its own and should rather be left to kids.

The boot is also small, almost a joke at best, but when you lift the floor board you find some more space where the spare wheel would be making its useful loading area great, but now a puncture repair kit and compressor is your only backup and unfortunately this is becoming the norm in the motor industry.

The styling is a favourable and a less costly alternative to something like the Mini Cooper. It is low slung with a stance helped on by the flared wheel arches, air dams and infused fog lights up front. Round the back is mix of artificial diffuser colour coded trimming and rather purposeful twin tail pipes that not only look the part, their tone alone fits the part as well.

Standard in the Swift Sport is EBD, ABS and ESP as well as all the airbags, climate control, Multi Disc MP3 players with matching sound, a keyless entry system and a full array of almost everything else that can be electrical. Add some Sports trim matched with the performance of the Suzuki Swift Sport and you have a handsome package of good balance between performance and luxury we don’t normally see in these types of motor cars.

But to be honest the Swift Sport is small, and maybe a little tinny with just too little sound proofing around the edges, but that is what makes this an awesome little city slicker. Its not a GranTourer meant to dash to Cape Town, but I bet that if you had too, this is going to be just as much fun, maybe even more if you take the alternate route.'s overall Rating 92%

Suzuki Swift 1.6L VVT Sport

R 199 900

Engine & Gearbox
Accel 0-100 8.9 s
Bore x Stroke 78.0x83.0 mm
C02 165 g/Km
Compression Ratio 11.1:1
Cylinders 4
Engine CC 1586 cm3
Engine Design Transverse
Engine Location Front
Fuel per 100km 7.0 Litres
Fuel Supply Multipoint Injection
Fuel Type Petrol
Gearbox Manual
Gears 5
Max Speed 200 Kph
Power KW 92 kW
Power Revs 6800 rpm
Torque NM 148 Nm
Torque Revs 4800 rpm
Valves per Cyl 4
Air Con Yes
Alloy Wheels Yes
Audio Yes
Central Locking Yes
Electric Mirrors Yes
Electric Windows Yes
Power Steering Yes
Seats 4
Safety & Security
Alarm Yes
Immobilizer Yes
SRS Airbags Yes
Boot Max 494 litres
Boot Min 201 litres
Dimensions 3765x1690x1500
Doors 3
Gross Weight 1485 Kg
Ground Clearance 140 mm
Kerb Weight 1030 Kg
Turning Circle 5.2 m
Tyre Size 195/45R17
Wheelbase 2380 mm
Suspension & Drivetrain
Brakes Front Discs
Brakes Rear Discs
Front Suspension MacPherson Strut With Coil Spring
Rear Suspension Torsion Beam With Coil Spring
Plans valid from Vehicle First Registration
Service Period 48 Months
Service Plan 60000 Km
Warranty 100000 Km
Warranty Period 36 Months
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