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LITTLE BIG CAR

This article is from our archives and has not been updated and integrated with our "new" site yet... Even so, it's still awesome - so keep reading!

Published on Sun, Oct 14, 2007

By: The LACar Editorial Staff

LITTLE BIG CAR By Kurt Fuhrman

Sports, sports, and more sports. There is something to tantalize every sports enthusiast's taste buds, whether the desire is football, basketball, or even baseball. However, for us automobile fanatics, auto racing is most likely the genre of choice. As we all know, the competitors in any sport must be highly trained, fine-tuned and ready to compete. Suzuki must have had the sports enthusiast in mind when they designed the 2008 SX4 Sport. Packed with a 143 horsepower, 2.0-liter DOHC four-cylinder engine and to transfer this power to the ground, the SX4 boasts136 pound-feet of torque. Suzuki's SX4 Sport has a low profile stance, which is supported by KYB shocks and stabilizer bars. Suzuki continues to prepare the Sx4 to battle the roadways and take on the competition.

An important feature of any sporty sedan is great visibility to see all road conditions and to know how far your competition is following behind you. The SX4 handles this necessity with an in-command seating position, enhancing visibility and control of any race terrain. Suzuki furthers control by meticulously enhancing the SX4 with 17-inch aluminum alloy wheels and 50-series performance tires. And in order to feel connected to all this performance to the road is a good, thick steering wheel to grip tight cornering or hard braking - a crucial element for a true sport feeling and safety. Did someone mention safety? Yes, after all football players have a galore of padding, baseball players have helmets and the SX4 is loaded with an array of safety equipment. First off, something everyone needs are good brakes. This Suzuki is equipped with a distinguished set of four-wheel disc brakes with Bosch ABS. This set will keep the SX4 in control during hard braking. And if needed, the SX4 supports not one or two airbags, but six (yes six) airbags for the ultimate protection of the driver and navigator.

Well we can all agree that the SX4 is substantially ready to perform while keeping its passengers safe, but can it perform? The fun begins. With a great mountain course outlined for us to test this sporty sedan, so when the green flag is waved, all I say to my passenger is hold on! My SX4 is equipped with a manual five-speed transmission, which I am thoroughly enjoying. Suzuki set the redline high enough to enable the SX4 to really get up and go. In addition, the high redline allows for great control when downshifting around tight corners, allowing the Suzuki to maintain RPM and accelerate at the apex of the corners. This little Suzuki is a spirited sporty sedan and is jam-packed with goose bumps of fun!

One curiosity of fun that I might, scratch that, I will pick on marketing for the name of this Suzuki. Now, not sure what is meant by the SX4. It is a front wheel drive car, but with a nice suspension and strong gripping tires, the SX4 handles much like an all wheel drive. Perhaps this is one theory behind the SX4. Then again, the second part of the name is sport. Now this is a name that this Suzuki encapsulates with pride. It is a sure joy to drive. However, neither the SX4 nor the Sport is by itself, in fact they are combined to read as the SX4 Sport. So, where am I going with this? I could be reaching, but the name rings of "sex for sport!" Granted, it is well known that sex sells. Did marketing just follow this approach without truly stating the specific phraseology sex? Or, is it just fun name and nothing to do with the thought process that sex sells. I mean, after all, the target market is around 25 years of age. So, is the marketing department smart or what? Nonetheless, whatever the name is, this Suzuki is an affordably hot ticket for exhilarating fun and excitement.

SUMMARY JUDGMENT It's an inexpensive economy sedan that thinks and acts like a sports sedan. For more information about Suzuki products, go to suzuki.com.

SPECIFICATIONS Name of Vehicle: Suzuki SX4 Sport Price: Base - $14,770 As Tested - $15,870 Engine Type: 2.0-liter, in-line four-cylinder, 16-valve DOHC Horsepower: 143 @ 5,800 RPM Torque: 136 lb-ft @ 3,500 RPM EPA mileage estimates City/Highway: Manual transmission: 23 mpg/ 28 mpg Automatic transmission: 24 mpg/ 30mpg Drive Configuration: Front engine / front wheel drive Transmission: Five speed manual and Four speed automatic Suspension: Front: Independent Macpherson strut suspension with coil springs, hydraulic shock absorbers and anti-roll bar Rear: Torsion beam live axle with coil springs, hydraulic shock absorbers and anti-roll bar Wheels and Tires: 16 x 6.5-in. alloy with P205/60R16 As tested 17" aluminum alloy with 50-series performance tires Brakes (Front) Power assisted vented disc (11.4 in/290 mm) with floating two-piston calipers and pad wear sensors (Rear) Power assisted disc (10.0 in/254mm) Overall Length: 162.8 in Overall Width: 69.1 in Overall Height: 63.2 in Curb-Weight: Manual Transmission: 2,849-2,904 lbs Automatic: 2,926-2,981 lbs

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