Suzuki Swift Sport exceeds expectations
Out of the life affirming Ford Fiesta ST and straight into a Suzuki Swift Sport. My expectation wasn’t high.
I’m down to 140PS from 200PS. I'm up a cylinder to 4, down 100cc to 1,400cc and on paper it’ll take me 1.6s longer to get to 100kmh. In the hot hatch stakes these things matter but they don’t paint the full picture. It’s the drive that matters. The drive in the Fiesta is full-on with a hint of danger. In the Swift the everyday drive becomes energised and exciting producing smile after mile after mile.
You certainly get the full hot hatch experience it's just that the Swift has resisted the temptation to hit the protein powder and bulk up.
It responds instantly and corners assuredly and is a joyous plaything. This is down to the 44% greater level of torque than the previous Sport model with 230Nm available from just 2,500rpm. It’s 140PS is more than enough to excite most punters but won't win the mine is bigger than yours competition. Suzuki know and knew this and have delivered a sporty, sensible, everyday hot hatch.
It's practical too with a 265ltr boot. When not floored a respectable 5.6ltrs/100kms can be returned. It is well specified too with a 4.2inch display with smart phone display capability, 17-inch alloy wheels, Dual Sensor Brake Support, keyless entry, adaptive cruise control, LED headlamps, auto everything and air con.
On the outside you get additional spoilers and the tell-tale hot hatch sign – twin exhausts. The interior is well laid out and functional with only a minor quibble that some of the harder plastics could be softer and I'd prefer audible reversing sensors as opposed to the camera provided.
In the hot hatch space there is a serious number of good cars. The Swift is head to head with the Polo GTi and the Fiesta ST. That’s a testament to how good it is and the overall package and a price of €22,995 makes the Swift a car that cannot be overlooked and will tempt buyers.
The full picture only ever emerges after a full investigation and the passing of time. My initial expectation was totally wrong and a lesson learnt. Suzuki has done an amazing job and produced, and this is a huge compliment, the sensible hot hatch of the genre and my favourite test drive this year.
Under the Hood
Model Tested - Suzuki Swift Sport
Engine - 140PS, 230Nm
0-100km/hr - 8.1s
Top Speed - 210 km/hr
Urban Fuel Consumption - 5.6 l/100kms
Price - €22,995