‘ I bought my Swift Sport new in 2015 and it’s now cov­ered more than 26,000 miles. I chose it be­cause it would be cheap to run and rea­son­ably prac­ti­cal. It’s loaded with kit that’s nor­mally ex­tra, it out­handles many more ex­pen­sive ma­chines, it looks smart, and it shifts – if you’re will­ing to rev it. It gen­uinely makes you want to go for a drive just for the hell of it. My Auris never did that, de­spite the moun­tain of torque it had!

‘ What’s it not so good at? The boot’s small, there aren’t a lot of mod­i­fi­ca­tions avail­able for mod­est money and it has an an­noy­ing “en­gine on hold” re­stric­tor while it warms up. But that’s about it. It doesn’t suf­fer from any glar­ing faults, it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg at ser­vic­ing time and in­surance is only Group 9. I see an av­er­age of around 40mpg dur­ing win­ter, 44mpg in sum­mer, though a spir­ited drive will see that drop into the mid- 30s. ‘ Garage bills have been very rea­son­able. I have my ser­vic­ing done at In­ver­ness dealer Dick­sons to keep the war­ranty in­tact. The first ser­vice was £ 138, the se­cond £ 235, but that in­cluded a front brake strip and clean. The only thing that’s needed at­ten­tion was a stick­ing rear brake caliper: a cheap fix at £ 43. ‘ I run my car on Goodyear Ea­gle Asym­met­ric 3s, as do other SSOC fo­rum mem­bers, on a slightly up­sized 205/45 x 17. The only mod­i­fi­ca­tion I’ve made is a change of back box. It’s now run­ning an Ul­ter that has a nice lit­tle growl at idle and is a bit more vo­cal un­der ac­cel­er­a­tion. ‘ There’s a strong fol­low­ing for the sporty Swift. Most own­ers are con­sid­er­ing an­other or are al­ready on their se­cond. The new tur­bocharged Sport is very con­tro­ver­sial – not just be­cause it’s go­ing to cost more, but the fact it’s forced- in­duc­tion.’

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