The small car company has gone back to the future with a re-release of an old nameplate. Let’s welcome the 2017 Suzuki Ignis GLX.When I say the small car company, I mean in the sense of the size of the cars; the Ignis is a tiny 3.7 metres in overall length, stands just 1595 mm tall ( a bit higher than the donor chassis Swift) and is just 1660 mm wide yet never feels cramped inside. For four people, that is. Somehow, they’ve managed to cram in a wheelbase of 2435 mm which provides plenty of leg room up front and an adequate amount for adults in the rear.It’s a blocky, squared off, design bar the leading edge of the roof and windscreen bracketed by the A pillars donated from the Swift. The driving lights as they wrap around the lower section of the headlights offer a cheeky grin and there’s a spot of LED at the rear. There’s a sharp angled, triangular, panel section in the C pillar and rear door, above the rear wheels with three indentations to break up that area visually. There’s a hint of Renault in the rear wheel arch, with a reminder of the pertness the French design into their hot hatches.Inside the test car is a mix of light and shade. There’s black plastic throughout most of the cabin bar white inserts in the door and dash and colour coded centre console and door grabs. The rear seats it higher than the front and for an unsuspecting adult, it’s all too easy to see the side of the head hit the door entry at the top. The charcoal and dark grey seats are comfortable enough if lacking in side support.The trim itself is an eclectic mix, with a carbon fibre look to the outermost airvent covers, piano black in the console, the bone white contrasting with the almost matt black in the rest of the cabin. The GLX comes with a four quarter touch screen mounted top front and centre. It splits up into audio, phone, guidance, and smartphone connection for allowance to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Easy to use? Yes indeedy. Leather wrapped tiller? Natch. Voice command and Bluetooth? Of course.The Ignis is motorvated by Suzuki’s 1.2L TwinJet four cylinder. There’s a CVT, Constant Variable Transmission, on board, which takes full advantage of the 120 torques at 4400 rpm and 66 kilowatts 1600 rpm further up the range. There’s a disconcerting hesitancy off the line before the CVT bites, a hesitancy enough that a double check for oncoming traffic is needed. It’s old school CVT in that it’ll rise in revs before plateauing even as speed increases before backing off and seeing freeway speeds at around 2000-2200 rpm. The CVT is also fitted with a low gear ratio, which, in certain circumstances such as climbing or descending hill roads, helps greatly in acceleration and engine braking.It’s an economical little beast, with a worst figure of 5.7L per 100 kilometres to move the 820 kilo machine. Economy as quoted by Suzuki for the combined cycle is 4.9L per 100 kilometres and you’ll need an economical package give the thinble sized fuel tank of just 32 Litres. It’s a surprisingly quiet engine and transmission combo too, with little of the expected thrashing and rattling.What was also unexpected was the ride and handling. Considering the tube sock tyres wrapping the black painted alloys, at 175/60/16 in overall size for the GLX, there was little tramlining, little unsavoury movement on rutted and dishevelled roads, and little sideways movement in crossbreeze. The coil sprung suspension combo of struts and torsion beam hold disc and drum brakes, and makes for a suprisingly well sorted ride. There’s a bit of road noise on rougher tarmac however the ride itself is supple enough. In fact, the only time the suspension made itself known was on the longer duration undulations and shorter dips, where the rear would compress quickly and the bumpstops would say hello.
At the End Of The Drive.
The two model range, GL and GLX, starts with a driveaway price just shy of $17000. The GLX is just two thousand more and one can option a black roof for $1000 and naturally there’s pricing for the predominantly metallic paint range. Suzuki will throw in their standard three year or one hundred thousand kilometre warranty, capped priced serving over the six monthly intervals with a maximum of $300 at the 60 month mark.
Suzuki have made the small car market pretty much their own and the Ignis continues that tradition, even if it is a return from the past for the nameplate. The 2017 Suzuki Ignis GLX rewards with a surprisingly competent ride, handling, engine and transmission, and is spacious enough for two. The small car king is back. Here’s more information: 2017 Suzuki Ignis range