I'm not particularly a patron of Suzuki cars, but recently, I was very satisfied with the latest Suzuki cars that were been introduced; they're worth riding. The all-new Ignis is definitely not an exception to that.

Anyway, I find it having extremely high standards. Its primary part is its new platform. The shape of this platform is basically similar with the Alto's platform. It was created for compact cars, and the Solio, which also adopts this platform, has already been released in the market, with it being in a lighter form.

The Ignis has the lightest weight, at 850kg. For example, the weight of its rival, the Volkswagen Cross Up! is 950kg. The Ignis with 4WD settings is the heaviest among the Ignis models, with a weight of 920kg. Since it doesn't likely have a rival model within Japan, I couldn't compare it directly with any car, but anyhow, its weight is light. In terms of weight, it has a heavy riding feel and for cars with tall height, it makes you want to make the under body part heavier when you seek for its stability. But this model already guarantees high stability, so it really has high standards.

Next, it is also fully equipped. Its brake support through dual camera is a safety package option, but it has a fully automatic air conditioning system as standard equipment, and it also has a standard full car mild hybrid system. It had an advanced response towards Apple Carpla, and adopted quickly for a Japanese car.

Its 4-cylinder K12C DualJet engine system has a lightweight and steady sound and vibration measure, yet it doesn't really have an excellent performance itself. But it has higher RPM, and it didn't make me feel any friction.

I personally think that it has a great design. Looking at it from the side, I found out that its design motif came from from the motif of the Alto; borrowing the same design motif from other Suzuki cars establishes the identity of the Suzuki brand. This also applies to its interior parts, and even though it may look simple and plain at a glance, I thought that its color scheme has a pattern, and it has been excellently designed with great functionality.

I test drove the model with the new Flame Orange Pearl Metallic body color. I test drove the Hybrid MZ grade, which has high-end equipment.

Its engine responds with the accelerator together with a light humming, but it has a CVT transmission, which I didn't find very impressive. Even when I started the car, I didn't mind much about it being one beat late from its partial high-speed acceleration. By the way, its paddleshifter is also equipped with a 7-speed step AT. With the influence of its CVT, it unconsciously generated power when you entirely step on the accelerator, and when it became a problem when I drove around the area, I was a little bit unsatisfied that it made me seek for more a momentary performance from it.

On the other hand, its sound isolation and ride quality towards flat roads are excellent. Contrary to my expectation that its suspension strokes had increased because of its tall height, they haven't increased, and even though its suspension strokes are slightly insufficient, at least I felt satisfied with its steadiness on flat roads. However, its behavior completely changes when larger obstacles occur; thus, it becomes rougher. Particularly when cornering, the rear end of the car jumps as if going over bumps. The engineer explained that its wheels have a bigger diameter than that of the Solio, so the main cause of it is the increased weight under the spring; I honestly think that this part needs to be improved.

Those abovementioned are the negative factors about this model. As a compact car, it shows its great presence even if it is just parked on one side, and with this model that has high quality and complete equipment, its price including tax is around 1,738,800 yen for the FWD version with the safety package equipped as an option. Even if you have it equipped with memory navigation that has an all-around monitor, its price wouldn't reach 1.9 million yen. Because there are no other elements that exceed functionally than this, the fully-equipped version costs this amount. The Demio B-Segment that I own costs around 2 million yen, so the Ignis is more cost-efficient.

Excluding Japanese cars, the Ignis is certainly a model that was born to challenge the B-Segment class, including the Volkswagen Cross Up! and the Fiat Panda.

■ 5 Star Rating
Packaging: ★★★★
Interior / Comfort: ★★★★
Power Source: ★★★★
Footwork: ★★★★
Recommendation: ★★★★★

Takahito Nakamura | AJAJ Member

Born in 1952. He loves cars that adorned the pages of car magazines, even at the young age of four. He started working part time at a Super Car shop. He also has experience being an apprentice mechanic for Nova Engineering. After that, he went to Germany to continue his pursuit of knowledge about cars. He entered the journalism industry in 1977, and has been a fixture in it for the last 36 years. He continues to be active as a freelance journalist.

(Translated by Claire Marie Sausora)