2009 Suzuki SX4 new car reviews

Better than: Dodge Caliber
But not as good as: Honda Fit
GRM Bang For The Buck Index: 72.21

Small vehicles like the Suzuki SX4 are the next big thing again, so we were eager to put our press car through the wringer to see how it stacked up against the competition.

Our example had a few creature comforts, such as a navigation system and Bluetooth phone integration, but we found the car to be somewhat spartan compared to products like the Honda Fit or Toyota Yaris. The seven-year, 100,000-mile warranty promises a long life for your money, however. We also appreciated that the car was available with all-wheel drive.

Other staff views

Joe Gearin Joe Gearin
Associate Publisher

I really, really like this car. Sure the SX4 isn't a rocket, the shifter is a little gritty, and it's handling isn't going to set any autocross FTDs. It is however a fun little run-about with plenty of space, AWD, and an eager personality. It is also dirt cheap, and good on gas. It seems the more complicated everyday cars become, the more attractive simple, fun sensible cars like this are. I really enjoyed the time I spent in the SX4. The interior is plenty nice for this price class, and the entire package seems well screwed together. I even like the funky windows on the A-pillar.

I'll have to disagree with the above listing. I'd pick this fun AWD little beastie over a Fit anyday, and I like the Fit!

Tom Heath Tom Heath
UberDork

I'm with Joe—even though my wife drives a Fit, I think I'd rather have the SX4. I loved the simplicity of the chassis and interior, and the engine seemed like it would happily chug along as long as you kept oil and gas in it.

I'd have liked to taken it Rallycrossing, but we can't play with the press cars as hard as we play with our own cars. The SX4 would make a great dual-purpose commuter.

David S. Wallens David S. Wallens
Editorial Director

Just thinking about this one a bit. If I needed a new people-mover, this one is worth considering. Yes, some parts didn't quite have that Honda/Toyota feel to them, but then again this one was nicely fitted for $16,000. If the Nitro starts at $4000 more, then the Suzuki is the deal of the day.

While we would have liked to have sampled the AWD version, we often have to take what the press pools send our way. For Florida, the FWD version is probably enough for more people.

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Comments
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Gearhead_42
Gearhead_42 Dork
2/4/09 1:22 p.m.

Disclosure: SX4 owner here!

Not sure I'd put the Fit and the SX4 in the same class, but there really isn't another compact AWD hatchback to compare it to. I'm technically on my 2nd SX4. I bought a base model '08 and liked it so much I traded up to an '09 just to get my spoiled self steering wheel audio controls and heated mirrors ;-) I am 13k into my '09 and have done nothing but change the oil maintenance wise.

It really comes alive with the RRM air intake!

thatsnowinnebago
thatsnowinnebago Dork
2/4/09 4:22 p.m.

So when does this turn into a rally monster?

Nashco
Nashco UberDork
2/4/09 4:56 p.m.

No AWD test? I thought that was the big reason to consider one of these! I'd be interested to hear what you guys thought of the AWD if you get your hands on one. I really don't know why anybody would get the FWD version.

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
3/12/09 9:14 a.m.

Yeah, it was an FWD car. We often have to take what the press car fairies leave under our pillows.

Tom Heath
Tom Heath UberDork
12/10/13 12:00 a.m.

Small vehicles like the Suzuki SX4 are the next big thing again, so we were eager to put our press car through the wringer to see how it stacked up against the competition.

Our example had a few creature comforts, such as a navigation system and Bluetooth phone integration, but we found the car to be somewhat spartan compared to products like the Honda Fit or Toyota Yaris. The seven-year, 100,000-mile warranty promises a long life for your money, however. We also appreciated that the car was available with all-wheel drive.

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