The Swift's shelf life is coming to an end, with the 2017 model set to be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show, which will include a mild hybrid option, a distinctive new look and turbocharged petrol engine for the Swift Sport.
However this generation is Suzuki’s best-seller, finding 10,000 UK buyers in 2012, accounting for 40 percent of the marque’s sales here. This figure includes around 1000 units of the talented 1.6-litre Swift Sport warm hatch.
Though externally similar, the current model uses a longer platform than the 2005 car to boost passenger space to respectable levels, although the high-lipped boot is off the class pace at just 211 litres (most competitors swallow nearer 300 litres, and the deficit worsens with the standard-fit splitting seats folded down).
The Swift still looks relatively fresh, though, hence the mid-2013 facelift brought little more than a mildly reshaped front bumper and new wheel designs. The cabin is sturdy and has plenty of cubbies but is dull in both design and colour – most surfaces are black, and most plastics hard to the touch.
The facelift did little to lift this pall, simply adding new seat fabric that remains both dark and scratchy. Five-door versions cost an extra £500 and come with a third rear seat, but while other occupants enjoy decent space, the central rear passenger is very tight for lateral room and legroom.
There are five trim levels to choose from - SZ2, SZ3 4x4, SZ4, SZ4 4x4 and the limited edition SZ-L, while the Swift Sport gets its own trim. The entry-level SZ2 trim includes seven airbags, remote central locking, 15in steel wheels, electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors, electric windows and front foglights as standard, while opting the SZ3 4x4 adds 16in alloy wheels, air conditioning, Bluetooth and a four-wheel drive system.
The mid-range SZ4 trims include climate control, cruise control, sat nav, DAB radio, automatic lights, and keyless entry and start, while opting for the 4x4 model adds side skirts and skid plates, and is fitted with Suzuki's higher compression ratio, two injectors fitted in each cylinder head DualJet engine.
The limited edition SZ-L trim adds solely a rear spoiler and black alloy wheels, while those wanting a little more speed can opt for the Swift Sport, which is equipped with 17in alloy wheels, an aggressive bodykit and sports seats.