New Swift on sale next month

The new generation Suzuki Swift goes on sale in Ireland on 1 June at a starting price of €14,495, writes Brian Byrne.

The car will be available with two petrol engines already familiar from the Baleno, the 1.2 four and 1.0 turbocharged 3-cylinder, with 90hp and 111hp respectively.

There will be three grades, the entry with the 1.2 engine, the mid-range and expected to be best seller with the 1.0 engine, and a top grade with the 1.0 in manual and 1.2 with All-Grip 4WD.

An automatic transmission is available at a cost of €2,000. A mild-hybrid system using an integrated starter/generator that recycles engine heat into electrical power and provides a torque boost at startup and a small-burst boost to acceleration.

All cars have Bluetooth and DAB radio as standard, and the top end version gets a set of safety technologies that include forward vehicle detection and automated braking, active cruise control, and lane departure warning.

This third generation Swift retains the style cues of its predecessors in an up-to-date design, and is shorter, wider, and lower, with a longer wheelbase.

The latest version is 120kg lighter than the outgoing car, offers 20pc more power, faster acceleration, lower CO2 emissions and a 25pc larger boot.

Although the car is entering a very crowded segment, the Irish distributor notes that there's a loyal cohort of previous Swift owners who will help the model get into the top ten sellers in its space.

Suzuki sales in Ireland last year were 43pc up on the previous year, and the highest for eight years at 1,263 units. The company is targeting a 20pc increase for 2017 against 2017.

A first drive report will follow.

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