Suzuki Swift Review 2024

Suzuki Swift At A Glance

Honest John Overall Rating
If you’re not so young, but you’re still young-at-heart, then there’s a lot to like about the Swift. It’s a very likeable car that’s bursting with character, and the people it suits will absolutely love it.

+Revvy 1.0 Boosterjet engine, stylish with plenty of kerbside appeal, really good fun on twisty roads, engines are refined and economical.

-Back seatbacks fold but not flat, ride is rather unsettled, interior plastics feel a bit cheap, small boot.

New prices start from £15,499
Insurance Group 12
On average it achieves 99% of the official MPG figure

The 2017 Suzuki Swift isn’t perfect, with a small boot, a slightly unsettled ride, high insurance costs and an iffy safety record. However, it’s still a very likeable car thanks to its funky styling, thrill-a-minute handling and rev-hungry engines, and there’s much more to like besides. Granted, most supermini buyers will probably prefer the cocktail of attributes provided by a Ford Fiesta or SEAT Ibiza, but while the Swift is flawed, it’s most certainly charming.

Fiesta. Polo. Corsa. There are some very familiar names in the supermini market, not least because they’re some of the best-selling cars in Britain. And for good reason. Smart to look at, comfortable and enjoyable to drive and practical enough for day-to-day use, they suit a very large number of drivers.

But what if you’re not like most drivers? What if you value different things? What if you could have a car that focused much more on fun and style than comfort and luxury, and you could have it for much less cash than you’d pay for one of the usual suspects?

If that’s what you’re after, then you’d be missing a trick if you didn’t consider the Suzuki Swift.

This thing really is lots of fun. First off, it looks great thanks to its sleek lines and its cutesy features. Secondly, it’s an absolute hoot on the road. The rev-hungry engines tempt you into thrashing them mercilessly, and when you chuch the car into a bend, it rewards you with good grip, meaty-feeling steering and really impressive balance. It’s virtually impossible to drive this car without smiling.

It’s good in other ways, too. The engines are smooth and quiet, and deliver good efficiency figures, there’s decent room for four in the passenger compartment, and all but the entry-level version come with a decent amount of kit.

However, doubling down on fun does involve a few sacrifices in other areas. Some drivers will find the ride rather unsettled, the boot is quite small and the cabin feels pretty plasticky. Still, drivers who are young and care-free are unlikely to care too much about that.

Sadly, the Swift does have one more rather serious - not to mention strange - achilles heel that makes it completely unsuitable for young drivers, and that’s its preposterously and catastrophically high insurance groupings.

Parents won’t much like the fact that the Swift has struggled in Euro NCAP crash tests, either. It’s such a shame, because otherwise, it’s absolutely perfect for that audience.

Ask Honest John

Can you turn off four-wheel drive in the Suzuki Swift?

"Can you turn off the four wheel drive on the Suzuki Swift? "
The Suzuki Swift Allgrip has an automatic four-wheel-drive system that only engages drive to the rear wheels when a loss of grip is detected at the front wheels, so this system cannot be deactivated by the driver.
Answered by David Ross

What is the battery life like on a mild hybrid?

"I am thinking of purchasing a 3 year old Suzuki with mild hybrid but am concerned on the life / replacement cost of the hybrid battery etc. I believe Suzuki give 3 year warranty on new card which can be extended to 7 years if the servicing is done by them. However their terms & conditions appear to exclude 'batteries' and I cannot find any specific reference to the mild hybrid system / battery. I thought of Suzuki as their 1.2 engine has a timing chain and would avoid the cost of replacing timing belts used by most manufacturers. Am I just changing cost of timing belts with replacing hybrid batteries? The battery is fitted under the front passenger seat, is this safe? "
Mild hybrids have very small battery packs compared to full hybrids and EVs, and at no point is the car driven solely on electric power, so the performance of the car is affected very little by the condition of the battery. We would expect it to last for many years without replacement, and we would also expect it to cost less in terms of maintenance over a given period than a timing chain. A battery mounted inside the passenger compartment is much less likely to suffer damage in the event of an accident than one mounted in the engine compartment or boot, so arguably it is a safer arrangement.
Answered by David Ross

What's the best back to basics hatchback?

"I need to replace a basic Renault Twingo after 13 years. The car needs to be petrol, manual, preferably with steel wheels, a full size spare, cheap to maintain and service, five doors, size up to Vauxhall Corsa or similar, boot size to hold a weekly shop for four and up to £10000 and four years old. Simple controls would be useful as I'm not into complicated tech devices. "
We'd recommend a Dacia Sandero. It's a back-to-basics hatchback that represents excellent value for money on the used market. Also consider a Suzuki Swift.
Answered by Andrew Brady

Which petrol car has the best MPG?

"I am looking to purchase a 3-4 year old car. What is the best petrol vehicle that provides 55 miles to the gallon? "
There are quite a few petrol cars in this bracket, but the best of the bunch is the Toyota Prius, which in our Real MPG figures is achieving an average of 65.2mpg - well over your target of 55mpg. Strictly speaking however the Prius is a hybrid rather than purely petrol, so for a petrol-only alternative we would suggest something like the Suzuki Swift with the 1.0-litre Boosterjet engine, which is achieving an average of over 60mpg in our Real MPG figures.
Answered by David Ross
More Questions

What does a Suzuki Swift cost?