The new-generation Suzuki Swift Sport was recently launched in SA. In a major departure from its much-loved predecessor, the Hamamatsu-based firm's feisty compact hatch eschews a rev-happy 1.6-litre mill for a new 1.4-litre turbopetrol (BoosterJet) motor. Herewith the specs and prices for the manual and auto versions of the 1.4T Sport...
At the heart of the newcomer is a direct-injection 1.4-litre 4-cylinder BoosterJet turbopetrol that features roller rocker-type variable valve timing, a revised air intake (with dual air-intake pressure sensors and a pair of electric radiator fans), an integrated exhaust manifold, a pendulum-style engine mounting system and Swift Sport-specific mapping. It delivers 103 kW at 5 500 rpm and 230 Nm of peak torque between 2 500 and 3 500 rpm.
By virtue of turbocharging, peak torque has climbed despite a smaller capacity engine – 230 Nm is available from 2 500 rpm.
The 2019 model is claimed to accelerate from 0 to 100 kph in 8 seconds and reach a top speed of 205 kph. The performance figures are identical for both derivatives, irrespective of whether they're equipped with the uprated 6-speed manual 'box (with a shorter throw, tweaked clutch profile and revised synchromesh) or new 6-speed auto transmission (the latter of which is augmented by 'wheel-mounted shift paddles).
The Swift Sport weighs 970 kg, which makes it 90 kg lighter than before – Suzuki lightened the car’s doors, body construction, alloy wheels, engine, seats and interior fittings. However, the newcomer has twice as much ultra-high tensile steel as its predecessor (it is underpinned by a continuous-frame chassis, as opposed to the previous generation’s segmented frame) and engineers have added more welding spots than the standard Swift to ensure “very little body flex or shudder will enter the vehicle, even when driven very hard on uneven surfaces.”
The chrome-tipped exhaust ends, located at either end of the rear valance, emit a rorty exhaust note.
To aid ride and handling, the car’s custom-designed Monroe shock absorbers have been tuned for minimal body roll and progressive understeer in fast corners. Engineers have also fitted thicker anti-roll bars, an integrated single-unit solution for the wheel hub and bearings, as well as increased spring and damper rates at the front. There is a unique trailing arm suspension at the rear to improve tracking between the front and rear wheels.
For improved stopping power (and efficiency), Suzuki has further increased the size and thickness of the front ventilated disks, while the solid disk brakes are made from a new material that is less prone to fade under hard use, the firm claims.
The Swift Sport's body kit is not just for show, the adornments are said to help improve the aerodynamic efficiency by 10%.
Eye-catching exterior execution
From the front, the new Swift Sport is distinguishable by its reverse-slanted front grille with honeycomb pattern, LED headlamps with elongated light-bar-type DRLs, two large bumper cut-outs that house integrated fog lights and a front splitter with carbon-fibre type patterning.
The flanks are accentuated by 16-inch diamond-cut and polished alloy wheels, shod with 195/50R16 low-profile tyres, darkened privacy glass to the rear windows and carbon fibre-patterned side underspoilers. These spoilers, combined with the redesigned tailgate spoiler, new flat covers under the engine and main floor and new, larger front strakes, are said to boost the 1.4T's aerodynamic efficiency by 10% over its predecessor.
The Swift Sport's headlamps are full-LED units, replete with elongated light-bar-type DRLs.
Meanwhile, the 1.4T’s rear end features LED-taillamps, the aforementioned enlarged, integrated spoiler, plus a fully-redesigned bumper finished off with 2 chrome-tipped exhaust ends, one on either side of the valance, which “have been acoustically engineered for a deeper sound at low engine speeds”, Suzuki claims. A rear splitter, in the same design and style as the underspoilers and front aerofoil, round off the exterior execution.
Decidedly sporty cabin
Inside, there are grippy semi-bucket front seats with extra side bolstering, stainless-steel sport pedals, as well as red and chrome detailing, such as contrast stitching on the gear-lever boot, steering wheel and seats and a special red-to-black gradation on the fabric upholstery.
Red accents, similar-coloured contrast stitching and sporty speedometer and tachometer dials add a sense of occasion.
The rev counter has a red backing and the speedometer’s face is deep silver in colour. Suzuki has added fine scaling to the pair of dials to create the impression of ultra-sporty mechanical instrumentation. What’s more, serious petrolheads will appreciate the central colour LCD trip computer, which can be configured to display values such as boost- or oil pressure.
Meanwhile, the 1.4T offers such luxuries such as a height-adjustable driver’s seat, multifunction steering wheel (with controls for the audio system, handsfree telephony and voice command recognition), automatic climate control, electrically adjustable (and folding) side mirrors, electric windows and a keyless access system with Start/Stop button.
The front sport seats are unique to Swift Sport; they feature integrated headrests and beefed-up side bolsters.
The 7-inch colour touchscreen infotainment system built into the Swift Sport’s fascia is fully compatible with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility, offers Bluetooth streaming and USB connectivity and displays the feed from the integrated reverse-view camera.
In terms of safety features, the newcomer features ABS with EBD and electronic stability control are standard. It offers a complement of 6 airbags (dual front-, side- and curtain ‘bags) ISOfix child-seat mounting points, LED combination tail lamps, a high-mounted LED stop lamp (built into the rear spoiler), an immobiliser and integrated alarm system.
Swift Sport (2019) price in South Africa
Both Swift Sport derivatives come with a 4-year/60 000 km service plan and a 5-year/200 000 km manufacturer warranty.
|1.4T Sport||R315 900|
|1.4T Sport auto||R335 900|