- Available with four-wheel drive
- Plenty of interior space
- Neatly laid dash
- Well equipped as standard
- Some cheap-feeling plastics inside
- Early petrol engine is lacklustre on 4WD models
The Suzuki SX4 is a bit of an oddity. It's a five-door hatchback, similar to the Suzuki Swift, but it comes with a chunky off roader look and is available with four-wheel drive. The result is a slightly quirky cross between the two but it's also a success. It's practical and roomy inside, very comfortable on the move and handles well too with positive steering and an agile nature. The majority of models sold are only two-wheel drive and there are two subtly different body styles, one featuring extra wheel arch mouldings, roof rails and protective bodywork while this is absent in the more standard version. The SX4 was developed in collaboration with Fiat, who provided the diesel engine and offer a near identical model called the Sedici. It was facelifted in 2010 with an improved interior and a more powerful petrol engine.
Front- or four-wheel drive
Despite its butch bodywork and Suzuki’s long heritage with off-roaders, the SX4 is offered in front-wheel drive as well as all-wheel drive. In fact, the more affordable models are all front-drive and, if you avoid the sluggish four-speed automatic gearbox, the petrol-only front-drive model even returns decent 45.6mpg economy. If you want all-wheel drive with the SX4, the price creeps up and you have a choice of the 1.6-litre petrol engine or 2.0-litre turbodiesel. With four-wheel drive, the economy and emissions advantage of the diesel engine is eroded by its cost.
Pricey diesel model
The Suzuki SX4 should offer buyers a way into a versatile and affordable crossover that has a little more off-road ability than most of its competitors. In the case of the petrol all-wheel drive model, this is just about the case, but for the diesel-powered version it gets quite expensive for what is a mediocre driving small hatch. At this price level, the Suzuki comes into conflict with too many far more talented crossovers and SUVs, such as the Nissan Qashqai and Skoda Yeti. Further compounding the Suzuki’s woes are emissions of 139g/km for the diesel, which are at best average for this class nowadays. Can it keep up with the competition? Read the full Suzuki SX4 review to find out.