Hot but smart? Isn’t that the dream? Car buyers are often faced with the dilemma of buying the car their heart desires versus the car their sensible everyday brain calculates to be the right choice. You can often tell by the look on a motorist’s face which organ won the fight, although either side can claim to hold the right answer. Suzuki’s new Swift Sport however may just provide a cease fire for the motorist’s desires, as sort of Switzerland if you will, although this car is anything but neutral.
The Swift Sport provides drivers with all the extras you found yourself wanting on the original Swift. The Sport’s styling is aggressive, so much so that you expect to find a super charged beast under the bonnet and not a 1.6L engine. Having said that the engine definitely adds grunt to this little car, and I’m pretty sure if it was any bigger and drivers may find themselves re-enacting their favourite scenes from the Fast and the Furious.
The entire form of the vehicle conveys a sense of tautness and stability, and makes it seem as if the Swift Sport hugs the road, and thankfully it does as this was tested during the recent launch.
Side underspoilers help to create the Sport’s low-slung look. Dual exhaust mufflers and a metallic-grey diffuser give the car a bold look from the rear, aided by the striking roof-end spoiler.
The interior of the Sport is very similar to the standard Swift, and by no means is that a bad thing. The quality of the interior is consistent and leaps and bounds above many of the cars in its segment. The addition of red-stitched accents on the leather steering wheel, sporty cloth seats and gear lever sock add a sportier edge to the interior. The stainless steel pedals, and an exclusive, premium-look chronograph-style meter cluster finish offer the Sport’s hotter and smarter edge.
The front seats are based on the comfortable seats of the new Swift, but with added support in the form of side-support pipes on the seat frame. A sporty seat shape is complemented by exclusive upholstery with a “Sport” logo embroidered in red.
The engine and transmission that form the heart of the sporty new flagship represent a balance between conflicting demands for higher power and greater environmental performance. The Sport’s four cylinder petrol powerplant of 1,586 cc now offers 100kW of power and 160Nm of torque. Peak power comes at 6,900r/min, while peak torque is achieved at 4,400r/min.
A specially designed six-speed close-ratio manual transmission allows the engine’s relatively high output to be used to the full advantage. CO2 emissions have been significantly reduced, down from 165g/km in the previous vehicle to 153g/km in the new Swift Sport, an 8% improvement. At the same time, the zero to 100 km/h sprint time has been reduced to 8.7 seconds, down from 8.9 seconds in the previous model. Top speed is 195 km/h.
The new Swift Sport costs R213 900, which includes metallic paint as well as the Suzuki Complete package, which covers the full spectrum of after-sales support.