PistonHeads.com Forum

RE: Suzuki Swift Sport: PH Fleet

RE: Suzuki Swift Sport: PH Fleet

Sunday 19th March

Suzuki Swift Sport: PH Fleet

The best old-fashioned hot hatch you can still buy new? Life with the Swift suggests it might be!



Finally then, the Swift Sport has had a track outing. What a shame to not be driving it there! Ben took the car along to our Sunday Service at Silverstone recently - I was on the way to the Geneva show - and returned with many good things to say: "Swift was mega on track, really well balanced and composed" the text read. It did also mention something about being "a bit slow" compared to that old French tin he's got (the blue one, not the yellow one), but the positive news was welcome.


I've not spent the whole month in the Swift, though it has been pleasing to note on the odd occasion just how it proves sometimes you only need the basics. As an example it was the transport home from Heathrow after the 5 Series launch recently - that BMW has four ways (that I can count) to turn the media volume up: via the conventional dial, the steering wheel mounted control, the gesture control and through voice. And beyond initial showing off, are you really going to use the latter two? The Swift has a dial and steering wheel button, which work fine. Same with the cruise control: it's on, or it's off. The lights are on a stalk, the handbrake is a handbrake (very, er, effective it is too) and the air-con is simplicity in itself. I know some will say certain amenities, even on a Swift, are superfluous anyway, but I feel that the current car really well incorporates everything you could want without ever feeling overcomplicated or confusing.

Will that be the same for the new car? Let's see. I had a brief look around at Geneva - in all honesty, there were rather more interesting cars to look at - and, while the new look isn't entirely convincing, the news of an even trimmer kerbweight and a reworked interior are encouraging. Yes, I've banged on about the current car's back to basics charm, but this doesn't appear to have entirely foregone that while also bringing in some more style. It's even got two cupholders in the front now...


As you read this a Fiesta Ecoboost should be arriving at PHHQ for a long overdue comparison with the Suzuki. And I have to be honest here, things don't look great for 'my' little Swift. The Ford produces more power and more torque (though at what revs we don't know yet), with very similar performance figures, better official mpg and those famed Fiesta dynamics. The Swift is significantly lighter and cheaper though; sometimes the old methods are best, aren't they? It will be an interesting comparison; more on that next month.

In the coming weeks I really need to get more comparison tests sorted, just to see if the Swift really is spot-on combination of old fashioned fun and modern ease of use I believe it to be. It probably won't be with us for much longer so that's a matter of urgency - if there isn't much content on the site soon then you know I'll be out driving some great old hatchbacks!


FACT SHEET
Car
: Suzuki Swift Sport
Run by: Matt
On fleet since: October 2016
Mileage: 4,324 (delivered on 300)
List price new: £14,399
Last month at a glance: Circuit training for the Swift Sport and it's fighting fit!

Previous updates:
A Swift hello!
Doors for thought as Matt gets in a five-door Sport
A Goodwood great? Not far off...
More miles means more smiles
Still a super Swift for Matt

 

 

 

 

[Track shots: Chris Teagles]

 

Author
Discussion

Itsallicanafford

Original Poster:

1,676 posts

80 months

Thursday 16th March
quotequote all
Chap, PM me if you fancy comparing it to a S2 106 Rallye...based in St Albans, available whenever you want it.

trickywoo

6,884 posts

151 months

Thursday 16th March
quotequote all
Itsallicanafford said:
Chap, PM me if you fancy comparing it to a S2 106 Rallye...based in St Albans, available whenever you want it.
Size 8 shoe or less hehe

Itsallicanafford

Original Poster:

1,676 posts

80 months

Thursday 16th March
quotequote all
Ha! That's exactly my size!

justa1972

109 posts

58 months

Thursday 16th March
quotequote all
Tried a Swift Sport before getting my Fiesta Red Edition 140 and don't regret my decision one little bit.

Loads of fun for not much £££.

Swift is a good car but compared to the ecoboost the performance was just archaic frown

flintymutt

8 posts

25 months

Thursday 16th March
quotequote all
justa1972 said:
Tried a Swift Sport before getting my Fiesta Red Edition 140 and don't regret my decision one little bit.

Loads of fun for not much £££.

Swift is a good car but compared to the ecoboost the performance was just archaic frown
Interestingly we went the opposite way. The Fiesta was just dull to sit in and was typical Ford which I'm not a fan of. The Swift is the nearest thing you can buy that replicates the unfussy approach of the original Golf GTi and 106 GTi. It's just brilliant and a real drivers car. The Ford has too much technology under the bonnet which in my mind takes the fun away from it and becomes something which feels somewhat false. Yes the Goesta is a good car in its own right but it couldn't and didn't put a smile on my face when chucking around twisty roads. And when you only pay £12k for one brand new after negotiating on the Swift, what's not to like.

Advertisement

justa1972

109 posts

58 months

Thursday 16th March
quotequote all
flintymutt said:
Interestingly we went the opposite way. The Fiesta was just dull to sit in and was typical Ford which I'm not a fan of. The Swift is the nearest thing you can buy that replicates the unfussy approach of the original Golf GTi and 106 GTi. It's just brilliant and a real drivers car. The Ford has too much technology under the bonnet which in my mind takes the fun away from it and becomes something which feels somewhat false. Yes the Goesta is a good car in its own right but it couldn't and didn't put a smile on my face when chucking around twisty roads. And when you only pay £12k for one brand new after negotiating on the Swift, what's not to like.
To sit in? Did you actually drive it?

I don't really think about the technology when I'm driving it other than to think how good it is. I'm not knocking the Swift though as I quite liked it but if you werent in the mood it was hard work getting any sort of speed up. In the Fiesta you can just sit back and use the torque.

VeeFource

798 posts

98 months

Thursday 16th March
quotequote all
justa1972 said:
Tried a Swift Sport before getting my Fiesta Red Edition 140 and don't regret my decision one little bit.

Loads of fun for not much £££.

Swift is a good car but compared to the ecoboost the performance was just archaic frown
As mentioned in the comments of previous updates of this long-termer, the thing that kills the Fiesta for many of us is the tall ratio 5 speed gearbox. Also I don't know how you can call the Swift's performance archaic when it's less than 10bhp more and is a fair bit heavier..

gweaver

369 posts

79 months

Thursday 16th March
quotequote all
justa1972 said:
To sit in? Did you actually drive it?
..
I'm not knocking the Swift though as I quite liked it but if you werent in the mood it was hard work getting any sort of speed up. In the Fiesta you can just sit back and use the torque.
I drove several examples of both and eventually settled on the Swift.

IMHO the turbo lag, reduced torque in 1st & 2nd, longer gearing and additional weight negate most of the on paper performance advantages of the Fiesta. The additional torque is an advantage when cruising on the motorway though.

If you were weaned on turbodiesels and never go beyond 4000 rpm I could understand your point of view, but if you value responsiveness, know how to use a gearbox, or want to get that 3rd gear overtake done quickly and safely, the Swift has the edge.

Gandahar

4,521 posts

49 months

Thursday 16th March
quotequote all
Is it me or does the new Swift look like someone looked at the Fiesta styling which aped the Aston Martin and thought "Yeah, lets do that too!" ?

I like the honesty of the old Swift styling and it's honesty in how it was a warm hatch. Far better to then throw bits at it to meld it to your liking anf go faster, something the Japanese have always allowed.

The new one cannot let the side down with it's new face.


chriscoates

616 posts

81 months

Thursday 16th March
quotequote all
Great to see cars like the Swift being given the recognition they deserve for keeping the simple, old-fashioned warm/hot hatch recipe alive. Everyone seems so obsessed with power these days.

If you're looking for comparisons, I've got a 2005 Lupo GTI, one of the last made and one of only five cars in the UK in laser blue. PM me if you're interested, would be more than happy to spend a few hours hooning about smile

Ilovejapcrap

1,603 posts

33 months

Thursday 16th March
quotequote all

I love the swift sport, but o would say that


http://www.pistonheads.com/gassing/topic.asp?t=163...

AW90

11 posts

30 months

Friday 17th March
quotequote all
Let's consider long term reliability. How long is a highly strung, rattly 1.0 3 pot with a turbo going to last compared a well proven Japanese NA 4 pot. My money's on the Swift there.
The Swift is there to be driven hard and doesn't need a lazy turbo. Real world MPG in the Ecoboost isn't great either. It needs boost to get anywhere.

justa1972

109 posts

58 months

Friday 17th March
quotequote all
AW90 said:
Let's consider long term reliability. How long is a highly strung, rattly 1.0 3 pot with a turbo going to last compared a well proven Japanese NA 4 pot. My money's on the Swift there.
The Swift is there to be driven hard and doesn't need a lazy turbo. Real world MPG in the Ecoboost isn't great either. It needs boost to get anywhere.
Sorry but that's complete rubbish? Highly strung and ratly?

Complete tosh!

Also running around I get 40 mpg (mainly 3 mile journey to work) and 50 mpg on a long run - not exactly poor!

Edited by justa1972 on Friday 17th March 08:31

VeeFource

798 posts

98 months

Friday 17th March
quotequote all
justa1972 said:
Sorry but that's complete rubbish? Highly strung and ratly?

Complete tosh!

Also running around I get 40 mpg (mainly 3 mile journey to work) and 50 mpg on a long run - not exactly poor!

Edited by justa1972 on Friday 17th March 08:31
From a cost point of view they're probably 6 of one and half a dozen of the other. The Swift gets high 30's running around and mid 40's on a long run but that difference equates to just over £100 per year in fuel based on 10k miles which is next to nothing. But when you take into account the Fiesta is turbo charged and has direct injection which is known for causing the intake parts of the engine to gum up then you can bet the costs will even themselves out over the life time of the cars. Compared with the Swift the Fiesta is more highly strung at 100bhp/litre vs 85 bhp/litre or nearly 18% more.

AW90

11 posts

30 months

Friday 17th March
quotequote all
justa1972 said:
Sorry but that's complete rubbish? Highly strung and ratly?

Complete tosh!

Also running around I get 40 mpg (mainly 3 mile journey to work) and 50 mpg on a long run - not exactly poor!

Edited by justa1972 on Friday 17th March 08:31
If you're getting those MPG figures from your trip computer it's worth double checking them with a calculator as the computers are often inaccurate and over read.

It isn't rubbish. 1 less cylinder and less capacity = more engine stress. Some have been known to go through clutches and turbos at low mileage. The same with the Focus. Also direct injection as highlighted above. I'd like to see a good number get to 100k+ miles on original engine components. The Swift is also well proven at Rent4Ring.

The Swift is far more of a driver's car and handles phoenonmanally. It's Jap, it's cheaper, it's a no brainier if you're even a tiny bit of a petrolhead.

justa1972

109 posts

58 months

Friday 17th March
quotequote all
A touchy lot Swift owners aren't they ??!

I am allowed a different opinion thanks - the Fiesta also has a phenomenal chassis and is without doubt a drivers car - why cant you accept that there may be other drivers cars apart from a Swift ?

I have my Fiesta for 3 years on a PCP so long term reliability doesn't really concern me - from what I've read Ford ecoboost are no more unreliable than other turbo charged engines. Of course turbos add something else that may go wrong but thats another subject - compared to having a car that you have to thrash just o get it too move I'll put up with that. Another dissppointment is that the Swift doesn't even sound good.

And don't talk to me about Japanese reliability ! The worst car I ever had was a Honda Civic that went through Clutches and Turbos like they were service items !

I'm not knocking the Swift its a good car I was merely posting out that there are good alternatives...

gweaver

369 posts

79 months

Friday 17th March
quotequote all
AW90 said:
1 less cylinder and less capacity = more engine stress.
To be fair, I don't think the strength of the internals is likely to be an issue. I've not heard any anecdotes about 1l Ecoboost con-rods being over-stressed and thus vacating the engine.
There are a lot of innovative parts to go wrong on the Ecoboost though, and they do seem to melt down very quickly and very expensively if there is coolant loss for whatever reason. In contrast, a head gasket on a Rover K-series was a cheap and easy thing to fix.

gweaver

369 posts

79 months

Friday 17th March
quotequote all
justa1972 said:
The worst car I ever had was a Honda Civic that went through Clutches and Turbos like they were service items !
Thought you must have had a turbodiesel!

I think the Japanese were (rightly) reluctant to develop diesel engines. They were playing catch up with the European diesels, but now they never will.
I'd rank modern diesels up there with electronic handbrakes and dual clutch & cvt gearboxes as technologies to avoid if you value reliability.

nickfrog

7,071 posts

138 months

Sunday 19th March
quotequote all
justa1972 said:
A touchy lot Swift owners aren't they ??!

I am allowed a different opinion thanks
I don't think they are touchy, just expressing a different view - tbf if you find the Swift "hard work" then the Fiesta is probably the right car for you.


Edited by nickfrog on Sunday 19th March 16:11

mjlloyd500

32 posts

7 months

Sunday 19th March
quotequote all
the fiesta is a essex chav dagenham dustbin as are all fords and i come from essex plus i had a swift and the chasis was like a 205 and 306 variants.