Johannesburg - In the last few months of getting to know our Suzuki Swift 1.2 GL long-term test car, we’ve experienced it in a wide variety of conditions, from city driving to the open highway and even the Kyalami Grand Prix circuit during the AutoTrader SA Car of the Year evaluation days - although technically the latter was in a different test car.
It's worth noting that the COTY adventure led to the Swift receiving the Urban Compact Award for 2019, and that could not be a more appropriate title as city commuting is where this hatchback really shines.
It’s nippy, easy to drive and, thanks to the car's paltry 875kg kerb weight, the normally aspirated 1.2-litre engine can easily keep pace with fast-paced Joburg traffic - stomp on the right pedal hard enough and it’s actually quite brisk. The Swift also has enough gusto for highway driving, although you'll need to stir the gear stick at times, and it isn’t too revvy at cruising pace.
But it’s the fuel economy that impresses most. In a mixture of highway and urban avenue commuting (which has included some heavy traffic at times) the Swift has so far consumed an average of just 5.9 litres per 100km.
It’s also arguably one of the most stylish cars in the entry-level class, but the it certainly doesn’t sacrifice function for form as the Swift is extremely well packaged. It has a very useable (268 litre) boot and there is plenty of space inside - and even those in the back get to stretch their legs.