Suzuki Philippines (SPI) invited a group of motoring hacks to get behind the wheel of their well-loved hatch. The two-day test drive took us to the scenic Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar in Bataan from Suzuki Auto Kalookan and then back.
“Since its launch in 2018, the all-new Suzuki Swift has been receiving a good response, and this media test drive is another proof of the Swift’s reliable performance on the road. It is also a testament to our ability to keep up with the changing needs of Filipino drivers, especially the millennial market. The Swift continues to evolve to offer our young Filipino drivers a richer driving experience. This is another way we reach out to more Filipinos and share with them the Suzuki Way of Life,” said SPI Director and General Manager for Automobile Keiichi Suzuki as during his welcome remarks at Suzuki Kalookan.
Fresh units of the Swift GL-CVT variant were specifically prepared for the event with a special edition front grill, rear upper spoiler, and skirts installed, plus sporty decals added to enhance the hatch's youthful appearance. The confident Swift made easy work of the 3 plus hour drive to Bataan that was a mix of expressways, national highways, and provincial roads.
Behind the wheel
Even without the special trims added the units for the event, the Swift is already a looker. It's sleek yet chunky exterior is very sporty and makes it look bigger than it actually is. The Swift's European styling blended well with the old-world feels of Las Casas.
Inside, the Swift is roomy enough for it category. It has ample headroom, and legroom is not bad. It's luggage area received a small bump-up from the previous generation, and as with any of the vehicles in its category, every bit of space is appreciated. The interior is conveniently peppered with numerous cubbies and holders to house your whathaveyous.
Behind the wheel, driving position is comfortable. The steering wheel had controls for the radio so you didn't have to take your hands off the wheel when adjusting volumes or looking for stations. The Instrument panel is straight forward and easy to read, while the infotainment unit is simple to navigate. The touch screen head unit also comes with Bluetooth connectivity and built-in navigation.
The dash and side panels are made of molded plastic which isn't bad looking and is par for the course for the category, but if I was to nitpick, I would do away with the white, dimple-patterned accents on the dash and door trims that I fear won't fare well over time.
One would think that the 1.2L engine would be underpowered, but with its lightened chassis, the Swift's power-to-weight ratio improved some more and resulted in better handling and fuel consumption. The throttle is responsive, the CVT is smooth, and the steering is nimble. Best of all, it literally runs on fumes and uses very little Petrol.
So is the Suzuki worth your hard-earned cash? If you're in the market for a sub-one million hatch, the Suzuki Swift should definitely be in your shortlist.
Read more about the Swift here.
Las Casas de Acuzar
March 28-29, 2019