Review: Suzuki Swift (2017)

Rating:

Great steering and handling. Revvy 1.0 Boosterjet engine. Excellent 6-speed auto. 97g/km mild hybrid. A joy to drive.

Back seatbacks fold, but not flat. Room for a spare but not standard. 5-speed manual gearlever has long throw. Satnav does not show speed limits.

Recently Added To This Review

28 June 2019

News that Suzuki Swift Boosterjets have become unavailable due to doubts about 3-cylinder engine passing RDE1 (Real Driving Emissions 1) testing which is compulsory from September 2019. 1.2SHVS Mild... Read more

17 June 2019 Suzuki Swift range revised prices:

Suzuki Swift SZ3 1.2 Dualjet 5-speed manual: £12,499 Suzuki Swift Attitude 1.2 Dualjet 5-speed manual: £14,599 Suzuki Swift SZ5 1.2 Dualjet SHVS 5-speed manual 4WD £16,999 ... Read more

12 June 2019

Suzuki recalls 22,437 Swift models after a serious safety flaws were found in the airbag system. The carmaker says "unintended activation" of the side and curtain airbag may occur when one of the rear... Read more

Suzuki Swift (2017): At A Glance

With agile handling, eager yet economical engines, generous levels of equipment and sensible pricing, the Suzuki Swift is a great car. It’s practical and well made, but it doesn’t feel quite as plush or substantial as a SEAT Ibiza. Even so, it’s still one of our favourite hatchbacks.

It might look chunkier than the old Swift, but the new car is actually more or less the same size – so it’s at home on tight city streets and in multi-storey car parks. But it’s just as happy on a country road, with precise steering loads of traction and great handling, thanks in part to its very lightweight design.

There are two engine options – a 90PS 1.2-litre DualJet petrol, as seen in the previous Swift, and a 111PS 1.0-litre BoosterJet petrol. The 1.2 is revvy and enjoyable, but the BoosterJet is even better, with the same free-revving character plus an added injection of punchy, mid-range torque and excellent fuel economy.

Rear head and leg room is surprisingly decent, with room for a pair of adults if the front seat occupants aren’t too tall. The 265-litre boot capacity isn’t huge, but it’s plenty for shopping and the rear seat backs fold down for some extra space – although not completely flat.

Standard equipment includes air conditioning, Bluetooth and DAB radio, but we’d go for a mid-spec SZ-T to gain alloy wheels, better infotainment, a reversing camera and the excellent BoosterJet engine. But even top-spec SZ5 models are well priced and come with the option of an automatic transmission and even all-wheel drive.

The Suzuki Swift is easily one of the best small hatchbacks around. Forgive some slightly cheap looking interior plastics and a slightly small boot and there’s really nothing else to pick fault with – the driving experience, running costs, price, and equipment levels make it a superb buy. 

Suzuki Swift 1.0 BoosterJet SZ5 automatic 2017 Road Test

Suzuki Swift Sport 2018 Road Test

Suzuki Swift 1.2 Dualjet 4x4 and 'Attitude' 2019 Road Test

What does a Suzuki Swift (2017) cost?

List Price from £12,999
Buy new from £10,327
Contract hire from £126.34 per month
Get a finance quote with CarMoney

Suzuki Swift (2017): What's It Like Inside?

Dimensions
Length 3840 mm
Width 1735 mm
Height 1495–1520 mm
Wheelbase 2450 mm

Full specifications

The Suzuki Swift makes do with some less-than-premium plastics in its cabin, so it doesn’t have the same plushness as rivals like the Skoda Fabia. But if you can forgive that, there’s a lot to like, with reasonable levels of space, good build quality and plenty of standard equipment.

Up front the instruments are clear and easy to read, while the audio and ventilation controls are sensibly placed and labelled. From mid-spec SZ-T and upwards there’s a touchscreen system that isn’t too difficult to use – but it’s not as intuitive as those available in the Skoda Fabia or SEAT Ibiza.

Still, it comes with a reversing camera along with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink support. In top SZ5 trim, it features navigation too. The SZ5 also gets some fancy modern tech including adaptive cruise control, auto-dipping headlights and auto emergency brakes.

The back row of seats is practical enough for a pair of adults, with plenty of head room and generous legroom, provided the front seat occupants aren’t particularly tall. For children there’s more than enough space and, since the latest Swift only comes with five doors, access is good.

Boot space isn’t exactly class-leading, with 265 litres of capacity, but it’s plenty for a shopping trip and certainly an improvement over the previous car. The rear seat backs fold down to free up some more useful space, but they don’t fold flat so loading and unloading can be tricky – plus there is a big load lip to lift heavy items over.

Standard equipment (from launch):

SZ3 is the entry grade and includes with 15-inch steel wheels, electric front windows, manual air conditioning, auto lights, DAB radio and Bluetooth audio.

SZ-T gains 16-inch alloy wheels, front fog lights, touchscreen system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink and a reversing camera.

SZ5 gains 16-inch polished alloy wheels, sat nav, lane departure warning, keyless start, electric rear windows, speed limiter, automatic air conditioning, LED front and rear lights, electrically folding door mirrors and an advanced forward detection system, with auto emergency braking, lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control and auto high beam.

Child seats that fit a Suzuki Swift (2017)

Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.

Which car seat will suit you?

What's the Suzuki Swift (2017) like to drive?

The Suzuki Swift comes with a choice of two petrol engines – the 1.2-litre DualJet and the 1.0-litre BoosterJet. The 90PS 1.2 is taken from the outgoing Swift and is very good – it’s quiet at low speeds and is great fun when pushed hard on a country road.

But the 1.0 BoosterJet is much, much better. It’s turbocharged, so has a more generous torque output at lower engine speeds which adds up to much punchier performance on the road. It’s a great little engine, packed with character and delivers surprisingly strong performance.

Despite being a lot of fun, fuel economy is excellent. The official figure looks optimistic at more than 60mpg, but getting close to it in real world driving is actually quite easy. In part this is down to the light weight of the car – every version weighs in at less than 1000kg.

An added advantage to the low weight is fun, agile handling. The Swift has light but accurate steering and loads of grip through bends, with very little body roll and a real sense of nimble precision. It’s great fun to drive – but the suspension does sometimes feel a little on the hard side over very uneven surfaces.

If you choose a top-spec SZ5 model, the BoosterJet engine is available with a ‘mild’ hybrid system. This provides a little bit of extra drive from a standing start, which helps improve economy and lower CO2 emissions. The BoosterJet engine is also available with a smooth, six-speed torque convertor automatic gearbox.

The most expensive Swift actually comes with the less impressive 1.2-litre engine, but it gains the SHVS mild hybrid system and - more importantly for some - comes with an on-demand all-wheel drive system. This isn’t really geared towards getting you over rough terrain, but will provide some reassurance in bad winter weather.

The engine range is linked to the trim level you choose – so if you go for a basic SZ3 model you’ll get the 1.2-litre DualJet petrol engine, while SZ-T trim only comes with the 1.0-litre BoosterJet. Buyers of SZ5 models can get the most options, with the automatic transmission and the all-wheel drive variant both available. 

Engine MPG 0-62 CO2
1.0 Boosterjet 59 mpg 10.6 s 104 g/km
1.0 Boosterjet Automatic 53 mpg 10.0 s 114 g/km
1.0 Boosterjet SHVS 66 mpg 10.6 s 97 g/km
1.2 Dualjet 61 mpg 11.9 s 98–108 g/km
1.2 Dualjet SHVS 4x4 64 mpg 12.6 s 101 g/km

Real MPG average for a Suzuki Swift (2017)

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance

104%

Real MPG

42–80 mpg

MPGs submitted

217

Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

What have we been asked about the Suzuki Swift (2017)?

Every day we're asked hundreds of questions from car buyers and owners through Ask Honest John. Our team of experts, including the nation's favourite motoring agony uncle - Honest John himself - answer queries and conudrums ranging from what car to buy to how to care for it as an owner. If you could do with a spot of friendly advice before buying you're next car, get in touch and we'll do what we can to help.

Ask HJ

What car would you recommend for a young lady who has recently passed her test?

What would you recommend for a young lady who has recently passed her test and has a budget of £7000 to £8000? Reliability is important.
I'd recommend a Kia Picanto. It should be very reliable and your budget will get one with plenty of its original seven-year warranty remaining. It will be very cheap to run, too. Also, consider the very similar Hyundai i10 or, if she'd prefer something a little bigger, a Suzuki Swift.
Answered by Andrew Brady
More Questions

What do owners think?

Our view gives your our opinion, based on driving hundreds of cars every year, but you can't beat the views of someone who lives with a car day-in, day out.

  • 5 star 50%
  • 4 star 50%
  • 3 star
  • 2 star
  • 1 star

See all owners' reviews