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The Top Gear car review:Suzuki Swift
What is it like on the road?
So far, we’ve only driven the 1.0 Boosterjet SHVS manual, which was in range-topping SZ5 trim. This little Swift churns out 109bhp at 5,500rpm and 125lb ft from 2,000- to 3,500rpm, all going to the front wheels via a five-speed manual gearbox. Performance is punchy enough to have us excited at the prospect of the Swift Sport, which will most likely use the 138bhp/162lb ft 1.4-litre Boosterjet engine, as the 1.0-litre’s 0-62mph time of 10.6 seconds and 121mph top speed feel like entirely believable claims. It’s a really perky little operator, the 1.0 SHVS, and while there’s the pleasing aural thrum to the way the triple goes about its business of sweetly piling on the revs, there are also no vibrations or shudders to report back as you get quicker.
No problems with the motive power, then, and no real problems with the rest of the dynamics, because – with the entire range weighing less than a tonne and even as little as 890kg – the Swift feels lively and alert. The steering lacks for feel and the rack is controlled by a wheel that has a strangely thin rim, but there’s a distinct lack of understeer, well-managed body roll and a real eagerness to flick-flack through direction changes. That speaks of purposefulness that’s at odds with the Swift’s cutesy face.
The ride is comfortable, and there’s little to report in terms of wind, engine or tyre noise when you’re on a steady-state cruise. We wouldn’t say the 1.0 is an absolute firecracker to drive, or anything that should be on someone’s bucket list, but as a really cultured, appealing supermini, this Suzuki mild hybrid is a little corker that’s up there with the best in class.