SUZUKI S-PRESSO LAUNCHED IN MZANSI

Over the past four years Suzuki South Africa has really asserted itself as a force to be reckoned with in the Mzansi scene. Not only are they in the top 10 selling manufacturers in the country but they keep breaking their own sales records, which means it’s only a matter of time until they break into the top 5. And what better way to have a go at it than to launch the S-Presso, a basic, entry-level crossover/ SUV to get everyone into their own car?

Yes, the S-Presso – fully imported from India – will initially have a tough time selling, given the COVID-19 lockdown situation, but as soon as buyers are able to flock into showroom floors again I reckon it will move serious units. The car is tiny, at 3.6 metres long, 1.5m wide, 1.5m tall and with a ground clearance of 18cm and a wheelbase of 2.38m. Suzuki says it condenses all the best brand characteristics into an affordable package. Well let’s see what is on offer.

The exterior design is definitely quirky and unusual, with the front headlights almost sitting on the bonnet, while the front grille barely covers a quarter of the front surface. It makes quite a bold statement, with a lower black bumper placed for protection all the way around the car. Standard wheels are 14-inch steel types and all models come in a choice of 6 exterior colours as well as colour-coded door handles and side mirrors.

Buyers will be able to pick from five model derivatives; GL manual, GL+ manual, GL+ AMT, S-Edition manual and S-Edition AMT. All five are offered with a high level of standard equipment, such as air conditioning, power steering, multifunction display, rear parking sensors and front electric windows. Higher-spec models come with a full infotainment system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

The range is powered by one naturally aspirated engine, a 1.0-litre type that produces 50kW of power and 90Nm of torque. Suzuki has fitted the S-Presso with either a 5-speed manual or a 5-speed automated manual transmission (AMT). An average fuel consumption figure of 4.9 litres per 100km is quoted for the small 27 litre fuel tank. Since we have not driven the car yet we cannot say how it performs and we cannot vouch for its AMT. But we do generally advise against buying this type of transmission as they tend to be quite jerky and uncomfortable.

Some of the safety features listed for the S-Presso include two front airbags, ABS braking with EBD, those aforementioned parking sensors and a reversing camera for the higher-spec models.

Suzuki S-Presso Prices

GL manual – R134 900

GL+ manual – R139 900

GL+ AMT – R152 900

S-Edition manual – R147 900

S-Edition AMT – R160 900

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