|Suzuki’s Swift has always been something of an undiscovered gem, so the job of the new car is to keep the gem element while losing the undiscovered.|
|Key rival:||Mazda 2|
|Suzuki Swift 1.0 Boosterjet SHVS 111 SZ5|
The new Suzuki Swift slightly goes against convention, being a touch shorter and a lot lighter than its predecessor.
This new car lops more than 100kg from its kerbweight, so it’s about as light as a supermini gets, with the entry car tipping the scales at just 890kg. It might have a smaller footprint than rivals – it’s 129mm shorter than a new Fiesta – but the Ford is over 120kg heavier than the SZ5 model we’ve driven here.
Size-wise, the new Swift is 10mm shorter, 15mm lower and 40mm wider than the last car to give a more planted stance. The new platform has also helped to usefully boost boot space by 54 litres to 265 litres; it’s deep, but it’s still pretty small for the sector. At least there’s ample head and legroom in the rear seats.
The interior quality is fine for what is a very competitive price, with this top-spec SZ5 being not much over £14,000. That gets you climate control, adaptive cruise control and sat-nav, while the SZ-T middle spec has a rear parking camera, smartlink audio system and 16-inch alloys. Entry trim gets Bluetooth, a DAB radio and privacy glass. A bit more interior storage wouldn’t hurt though.
The engine line-up brings a pair of petrol units: a 90hp 1.2 Dualjet that’s carried over from the last car and comes in the entry SZ3 trim and SZ5 as the sole four-wheel-drive Allgrip model, or the new 111hp 1.0-litre Boosterjet powertrain. The 1.0 driven here is fitted with the SHVS mild hybrid system that recuperates energy under deceleration, deploying it to help from a standstill or during heavy acceleration. It cuts emissions by 7g/km, taking the Swift to a low of 97g/km. The hybrid is the only 1.0 available in SZ5 trim, and costs £1,500 over the non-hybrid equipped 1.0 that comes in mid-spec SZ-T trim. The extra kit and better efficiency makes that price gap seem a small one.
The engine is effective from a performance point view, and makes the Swift a very punchy little car offering good power delivery, a pleasing gearshift action and precise steering, all helped by that weight reduction and small dimensions.
The residual values predicted by KeeResources impress, although servicing and insurance costs are high.