Suzuki Ignis

Suzuki Ignis Review: “The ‘samurai spirit’ that outshines European compact cars” by Yoichi Moroboshi

I test drove the Suzuki Ignis, which drew attention at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show and was released in the market just this 2016.

The Ignis is a compact SUV that was created using the platform of the Solio. Even though it has a short body size with an overall length of 3,700mm, it has a long wheelbase, at 2,345mm. Its overall height is 1,595mm, so it can be parked in a multi-storey car park for vehicles with overall heights of 1,600mm below. Its overall width is 1,660mm, so it’s not wide enough to be classified as a 5-number sized vehicle. Moreover, it has been compressed from the belt line upwards (up to higher than the side windows). This is its point. It is different from other cars that became more rectangular in shape because they were made more space- efficient simply due to being compact cars, because it has been improved to make it sportier.

When I embarked the car, I was surprised with the high reliability and stability of the area surrounding the chassis. It basically has a solid ride quality. It has a tight body, and its suspension has a very firm setting. Its tires constantly follow the road. Nevertheless, it doesn’t have a bad riding feel. Its style and riding feel were particularly excellent and compatible, especially for a Japanese compact car. I felt its ‘samurai’ (warrior) spirit that makes me want those who say that “French compact cars are…” or “It has Latin blood…” to try riding in this car.
It really got me!

As for its power unit, its 1.2L Dualjet engine with 91hp is mated to a mild hybrid engine that adopts a 3.1hp motor. It has a CVT with sub-transmission, also similar with the Solio. However, it has a more energetic performance than the Solio, and it feels great. It has a firm chassis and it is said that with its body, which is lighter by 100kg, generates a more pleasant running performance than the Solio. And when I restarted the car from an idling stop, it was very silent.
Instead of a starter motor, it has an integrated starter generator (ISG) equipped with a motor function, which is used as an alternator. Each time I used the idling stop system, it wouldn’t welcome me with tawdry sounds inside the vehicle when I restarted it again.

With its starting price of 1,382,400 yen, it has very impressive settings. Even if you totally equip it with Safety Package equipment (curtain airbags, front seat airbags, dual camera brake support, unintended starting prevention function, lane departure warning function, stagger alarm function, preceding car notification function, and emergency stop signal), its price would be around 1,479,600 yen to 1.5 million yen. It also has an amazing cost performance.

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

Yoichi Moroboshi | Automotive Journalist

He became a freelance journalist at 23 years old after working as an editor for an automotive magazine. He competed in races like the Fuji Freshman series in his late 20s for seven years. He does motorsports photography and works as a photojournalist. His hobby is cooking.

(Translated by Claire Marie Sausora)