New Dzire offers value to the budget buyer
Shopping for a new car under 200K in this day and age is not easy. Firstly, there’s not a lot available in the 150 to 200 price bracket, and what does fall in that category is most of the time bare bones offerings with suspect built quality.
Even when such cars are fitted with fancy gadgets - such as touch screens and Satnav
- the experienced driver will immediately feel that not much money was spent on the drivetrain, meaning the suspension, engine and transmission set-up.
Suzuki does it the other way around.
Here we have its new Dzire sedan.
The Dzire used to be the booted version of the Swift, and basically still is, but the Swift name is no longer coupled to the sedan version. It now being its own car.
As with the recently launched new Swift, Suzuki has concentrated on the Dzire’s underpinnings to make it a solid, drivable car, instead of spending money on gadgets.
The car still has all that’s needed for a comfortable commute in basic form, but also features a decent engine, transmission and suspension set-up for a comfortable and steady drive.
In this price range (R150 000 - R170 000) there’s not much in terms of soft materials inside the cabin and the Dzire has little in the form of fancy trim.
A sole chrome-look insert in the dash is as far as it goes, however fit and finish throughout the cabin are good and the materials used have a durable feel.
The seats are sturdy and comfortable.
There’s no big touch screen, Suzuki having opted to go for a older type push-button MP3/CD player.
The system offers Bluetooth connectivity and there’s audio and cellphone controls on the steering wheel.
A USB port is found in the lower part of the dash, as well as a 12V socket.
In the back there’s another
12V socket as well as separate air-con vents which is handy for those sitting behind the driver, but cool air can only really be felt if the fan is turned past the first setting.
Electric windows throughout and some nifty storage options add further to the Dzire’s comfort features.
Driving the new-look Dzire is a naturally aspirated 1.2-litre with outputs of 61kW and 113Nm. Those numbers don’t sound like much, but with a curb weight below 900kg there’s no need for more power and the drive in town as well as on the open road is quite satisfactory.
The five-speed transmission is smooth with good gear ratios and the higher profile tires smooth out a lot of the bumps on uneven surfaces.
Suzuki claims a fuel economy figure of 4 litres per 100km, and keeping a close eye on the guage while driving the sedan, confirmed that they are not much off with that number as the needle was very steady.
Having left expensive gadgets out of it, Suzuki was able to spend more on safety and fitted the car with ABS, EBD and dual front airbags.
While the Dzire is not setting new benchmarks, it’s a solid offering with good underpinnings.
In my opinion a good engine and suspension counts for more than gadgets, because it’s pointless having fancy features in a car which is a pain to drive.
The Dzire is comfortable in town where it has no problem keeping up with traffic and it is steady on the open road.
Suzuki Zululand is offering the manual Dzire in GL trim at
R165 990, and that’s a good buy in these expensive times we live in.