Suzuki Jimny SZ4

Suzuki Jimny SZ4.

The Suzuki Jimny will be replaced in the near future – not, you might be forgiven for thinking, before time. It has been around in more or less its current form since 1998, and it wasn’t exactly at the cutting edge of automotive development even then. By today’s standards it’s in many ways a terrible car. Having just lived with one for three weeks, I can happily say there is almost nothing on the market I want to own less. I would guess that this is a majority view, but…

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Suzuki Swift 1.0 Boosterjet SHVS SZ5

Blue Suzuki Swift SZ5 cornering hard.

The Suzuki Swift before this one was launched in the UK in 2010, and while it was a very appealing little car in many ways it was also starting to feel left behind by the opposition as it neared the end of its production life. The Swift which went on sale in June this year bears a close family resemblance to its predecessor but is better across the board. Crucially, although it’s a little shorter and lower, it’s roomier too. The older car already offered an amazing amount of space,…

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Suzuki Swift

Studio shot of red Suzuki Swift on white background.

It is just about possible (and I know this because I experienced it myself) to look at the new Suzuki Swift and convince yourself that it’s a facelifted version of the older one. The illusion vanishes as soon as you see the two cars together, because in fact every detail is different, but there’s no doubt that the spirit of the earlier design has been brought forward a generation. At heart, though, this Swift is completely new. It’s based on a platform which didn’t exist when the outgoing model was…

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Suzuki SX4 S-Cross 1.4 Boosterjet SZ5 Allgrip Auto

Overhead action shot of red Suzuki SX4 S-Cross.

I’m still not sure I like the large chrome grille that was added to the front of the SX4 S-Cross during its 2016 update, but Suzuki’s reason for adding it makes sense. The original model sold in disappointing numbers in the UK, and Suzuki decided that this was partly because the car didn’t look aggressive enough to appeal to SUV buyers. The grille, and a major change to the shape of the bonnet, have certainly put that criticism to bed. There was a little more to the update than a…

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Suzuki Ignis

Static shot of two-tone blue Suzuki Ignis.

Suzuki’s list of projected rivals for the new Ignis makes more interesting reading than these things usually do. In alphabetical order, it starts with the Fiat 500 and runs through the Renault Twingo, smart forfour and Toyota Aygo before reaching the Vauxhall ADAM. That’s quite a varied line-up even before you add in the Ignis, which at first sight is quite different from all of them. The rationale behind this is that, firstly, these are small cars and, secondly, they look distinctive and therefore stand out from the crowd, even…

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Suzuki SX4 S-Cross

Suzuki SX4 S-Cross front three-quarter view showing major facelift.

Although it was perfectly obvious that the SX4 S-Cross was a big improvement over the previous SX4 when it was launched three years ago, Suzuki soon found it was less appealing to compact SUV buyers than had been expected, particularly in the UK. One of the main problems, it was decided, was the car’s appearance. The first S-Cross looked inoffensive almost to the point of being apologetic, whereas the sector-leading Nissan Qashqai seemed much more confident. European company representatives went to Japan with a list of suggestions. Japan responded with…

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Suzuki Baleno 1.0 Boosterjet SZ5

Angled shot of red Suzuki Baleno being driven past a grass banking on an urban road.

Unexpectedly, I have fallen a little bit in love with the Baleno. It’s not that there is anything outstanding about it; I don’t think even Suzuki would seriously claim there was. Nor is the 1.0 Boosterjet SZ5 one of those cars that turns out, for no obvious reason, to be the absolute gem within its range. Within the first five miles it was evident that, for example, the 1997 Subaru Impreza Sport, the least powerful diesel version of the last-generation Audi A4 and, more recently, the 1.4-litre petrol Hyundai i30…

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Suzuki Baleno

Red Suzuki Baleno parked in front of a modern building.

One reason, though by no means the only one, for Suzuki GB to celebrate the arrival of the Baleno is that it increases the chances of certain customers remaining faithful to the brand. Imagine someone who is very happy with their Swift (no reason why not, perfectly decent little car) but finds – for whatever reason, maybe their tribe has increased – that something larger is now required. Off to the Suzuki dealership they go. “What do you have that’s larger than a Swift?” “We have the Vitara. That’s definitely…

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Suzuki Vitara 1.4 S Boosterjet

Suzuki Vitara S being driven vigorously round a left-hand corner on a country road.

When Suzuki launched the new-generation Vitara SUV in 2015, the choice of engines was limited to one petrol and one diesel engine, both of them with a capacity of 1.6 litres and each producing a maximum of 118bhp, though in very different ways. Since then, the engine opportunity has risen by 50%. Suzuki has introduced a new 1.4-litre turbo petrol unit named Boosterjet (slightly reminiscent of 1960s sci-fi, don’t you think?) which will no doubt become more common in time but is for now offered only in the Vitara. And…

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