The handsome Suzuki Swift
Hard to credit that it was way back in 2006 that the Suzuki Swift was Car of the Year in Ireland.
In fact, it wasn't just the winner, it was a run away winner, leaving the impressive VW Passat in its slipstream.
Suzuki and the Swift (pictured above) have come a long way. Last year the latest generation of the curvaceous supermini was unveiled.
Suzuki drove on with the alluring touches, the mix and match options for customers for both interior and exterior personalisation options that proved a big, big hit when the latest Vitara hit the road over two years ago.
Swift and boring don't go. Swift and fashion do.
The Swift is the third new model to use Suzuki's 'Heartect' lightweight platform stragegy - the lightest model weights in at 890kgs - which brings different benefits, including better fuel efficiency (8%).
There are two engine options, the 1.0 litre three cylinder Boosterjet turbo and the 1.2 litre Dualjet which offer nearly 20% more power than the replaced units, while new Swift is available in SZ3, SZ-T and SZ5 grades.
The 5-speed manual versions are expected to be the big sellers in Ireland, but our drive was in a high end automatic version which you could see having its appeal.
This version makes an easy to drive car even easier, with a silk smooth operation, no shunt on gear changes.
The 111ps Boosterjet engine is a lively performer; smart on take off; easy breather as it hums along at motorway speed.
Easy to scoot around
Swift is a ideal urban drive, with premier grade all round vision as there is copious amounts of glass, and tight dimensions that make it easy to scoot through traffic and into those tight parking spaces.
The small engine is full of energy, rarin' to go on the open roads.
The fuel returns are strong, but remember, you will pay the price if you are heavy on the use of that right foot.
My version sat firmly on 16" wheels, and there was never a hint of the body or car straying when on sharp or sweeping bends.
The Swift is most certainly sure-footed.
There is a nice feel to the new D-shaped steering wheel, which one felt made it easier to get a good, firm grip when looked for a quick swing of the ‘wheel’ when parking.
The interior of the Swift can be your choice - whatever options you choose - and it is wider and more spacious. The body shape - high roofline; curves, curves, curves - gives the cabin a bright, airy feel with a copious amount of headroom.
As many mod cons, driving aids as you would want are there; all easy to read, all close to hand.
The Swift comes with Bluetooth hand-free phone connectivity by the way.
The deep boot offers 265 litres of space.
The rear seat back splits 60/40 and folds flat, offering versatility for the the carrying of those awkward items.
The Swift can be whatever car you want it to be, depending on what option choices you make.
The shape alone will win hearts, and a drive that is easy and assured will add to the joy of ownership.
Suzuki Swift 1.0 boosterjet petrol SZ5 automatic hatchback €21,356, 3-cylinders, 12-valves, 998cc, 111ps at 5,500rpm, max torque 160Nm at 1,7000 to 4,000rpm, C02 114g/km, annual road tax €200, fuel economy 44.1 (urban), 65.7 (extra urban), 56.5 (combined).
Led daytime running lights, Led headlamps with high beam assist, DAB digital radio, Bluetooth connectivity, automatic air conditioning, privacy glass, rear view camera, front fog lamps, Smartphone link display audio, advanced forward detection system (dual sensor brake support, lane departure warning, weaving alert), navigtion system, Led rear combination lamps, adaptive cruise control, keyless entry and start, 16" polished alloy wheels, six airbags, ABS with EBD and Brake Assist, ESP (electronic stability pro-gram), immobiliser, ISOFIX child seat anchorages.