New look for versatile Suzuki SX4

Suzuki’s uniquely versatile SX4 leisure hatchback has undergone a series of updates. The changes are aimed at enhancing the cosmetic appeal of the vehicle, while also improving the interior execution.

The tried and trusted drivetrain options of the current SX4 remain unchanged, with a choice of front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive versions making the SX4 a unique contender in its segment.

Under the bonnet, a lively four-cylinder petrol engine provides ample urge, while there’s a choice of six-speed manual or six-speed CVT gearboxes. The interior retains its appealing mix of space and practicality, adding to the SX4’s overall attraction.

By far the most obvious change to the new Suzuki SX4 is the front grille, which features more pronounced horizontal bars and a prominent Suzuki logo. The new grille is accompanied by a profiled bonnet design, and a bolder, more sculpted front bumper.

SX4 fans will also notice the introduction of a brand new alloy wheel design, while the interior update includes the use of more attractive fabric for the seat upholstery and the door panel inserts, as well as black chrome garnish for the dashboard.

The instrument cluster uses effective light-emitting diode (LED) technology, complemented by bold and elegant instrument dials. An information display incorporating a digital clock, an outside temperature display, a fuel consumption gauge, and a travel range indicator is standard, while the CVT versions boast position indicator.

Ease of use is a key theme of the interior. For instance, the user interface of the automatic climate control system is simple to understand, while the CD receiver is compatible with MP3 music files.

The loudspeaker compliment consists of separate tweeters and mid/bass drivers in each of the front and rear doors, for a total of eight speakers. The ninth loudspeaker is a centre channel, mounted in the dashboard.

Other standard features include climate control, remote central locking, and keyless starting.

However, there have been no changes to the unique technical and dynamic attributes that have made the SX4 such a highly attractive and versatile alternative to small and compact SUVs.

Those attributes include a short turning radius, relatively short gear ratios, a highly rigid body structure, and a suspension optimised for all road conditions. The result is a versatile, compact and appealing all-rounder with an unrivalled sense of fun.

Both the front-wheel drive and AWD SX4 models incorporate a zesty 2,0-litre four-cylinder engine. The unit employs VVT variable valve timing to optimise torque and response at low engine speeds, without compromising power output at high revs.

Maximum power output comes to 112 kW at 6 200 rpm, while the torque peak of 190 Nm is achieved at 4 000 rpm. As mentioned, the updated range continues to offer a slick-shifting six-speed manual gearbox, and an efficient CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission) with six ‘virtual’ ratios that can be shifted sequentially in manual mode.

Gear changes can be achieved via the conventionally positioned gear lever, but also by using the convenient shift paddles mounted behind the steering wheel.

In fuel efficiency terms, the appetite of the front-wheel drive SX4 2.0 Manual stands at 7,3 litres/100 km, while the CVT-equipped model sips an impressive 7,6 litres/100 km.

The Suzuki SX4 has a solid reputation for safety in both active and passive terms, with the all-wheel drive version further augmenting the hatchback’s composure when negotiating less than perfect road surfaces.

This is reinforced by the presence of an Electronic Stability Programme (ESP) with traction control on the SX4 AWD model, providing an impressive degree of active driving safety.

As before, the SX4 range features latest-generation braking technology, with its all-disc braking system augmented by ABS anti-lock control, as well as Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD) and Emergency Brake Assist (EBA).

In the event of a collision, the occupants of the SX4 are protected by a full house of passive safety features. These comprise dual front airbags, side airbags incorporated into the front seats, and curtain airbags.

The newly updated SX4 models are priced as follows:

SX4 2.0 Manual R237 900
SX4 2.0 CVT R252 900
SX4 2.0 Manual AWD R257 900

Prices include a standard six-year/90 000 km service plan, and a three-year/100 000 km warranty.