The new 2018 Suzuki Swift will arrive in India early next year, but we will sneak one to see if it still has the goblin dust that made it an icon.
The biggest changes are up front, but we’ve been aware of these with the launch of the all-new compact Dzire sedan that has the same nose as the Swift. At the rate the Dzire is selling, the Swift will seem like a familiar face even before it’s launched, and I’m not sure that’s a good thing. But, like the Dzire, it will not go unnoticed, not with this aggressively protruding hexagonal grille and trapezoidal headlamps cut with full LEDs and daytime running lights (DRLs) integrated into the cluster. The bumper and lower chin are separated by a black plastic band that houses the fog lights most likely to be available only on high-end models. The new car is undoubtedly a Swift with its distinct silhouette with two boxes and wide hips. The longer wheelbase and larger 16-inch wheels make the Swift seem like a bigger class, but it still retains its cheeky character that is essential to its appeal. The line of the shoulder is more pronounced, especially at the back, and leads to taillights that are not as bright as before, but more rounded and similar in style to his brother, the Baleno.Another interesting detail which is different are the hidden recessed door handles in the upright-C. It is intended to give a more sporty atmosphere to three doors but, frankly, in terms of design, it is a little past. Another novelty is the little blackened wick that breaks the C-pillar to give a floating roof effect.
All seats will be optimized on India specification cars and Maruti is expected to develop different fabrics and cushioning for added comfort. The storage space in the cabin is quite generous with large door pockets and a deep closet in the center. The general sense of space that you get puts the Swift into a higher subclass, alongside luxury sedans like the Hyundai i20 and its own fellow roadman, the Baleno. Unfortunately, the interiors, however, do not feel upscale enough. The quality here is not a step forward and unlike its rival Hyundai, Suzuki, faithful to the tradition, on expensive materials. There is little in the cabin to suggest that this is a luxury hatch and that there is an excess of hard and shiny plastic. Bottom line; There are some interesting elements like the funky (and bulky) temperature control knobs, but we are concerned that this may be reduced to the more basic apparatus that is there in the new Dzire. The dashboard is quite alive and receives luminous dials and a high-resolution TFT screen in the center as in the Baleno. But, again, this can be downgraded to the simpler dials of Dzire and the matrix screen. The round air wheel houses a Swift registered trademark and the flat-bottomed steering wheel (also in the new Dzire) adds a touch of sportiness.
Powered by the company’s relatively new 1.4-liter Boosterjet engine, the Swift Sport is rated at 138 horsepower and 170 lb-ft of torque. That’s an increase of eight horses and 50 foot-pounds on the outgoing model. It’s pretty decent for a new-generation car, but it’s also not as good as the Volkswagen Polo GTi and the Ford Fiesta ST, which deliver nearly 200 horsepower.
Pricing for the new 2018 Suzuki Swift Sport is not yet available, but it is safe to assume that it will cost more than the standard range top SZ5 trim, from £ 14,499. It should also cost less than the new Volkswagen Polo GTI and the Ford Fiesta ST, which should rise from £ 19,000 to £ 20,000. In all, look for a sticker of £ 17,000 to £ 18,000. For reference, the base model starts from £ 10,999.