The Suzuki SX4 is famous for being one of the pioneers of today's booming mini SUV class. That was2006. 2013, the Japanese grew strongly at the time of the model change at the time - but stopped shortly before the limit to the average compact SUV. Since then, he has been campaigning for customers either as a large mini crossover or as a small compact SUV. And especially beckons with its low price. In the top version with all-wheel drive, it is a bargain.
Almost 30.000 Euro costs the SX4, now nicknamed "S-Cross", in the highest configuration level with all-wheel drive and diesel engine (88 kW / 120 PS). Even those who book the few remaining options - such as dual clutch gearboxes and metallic paint - get just 31.590 euros. The price list for the segment bestseller VW Tiguan currently begins approximately there - with front-wheel drive and in the frugal “Trendline” basic version.
Of course: The Tiguan is bigger, more prestigious, has more high-tech options and also a few extra horsepower (110 kW / 150 PS). If you don't need all of this, you can definitely take a look at the SX4. And should not be put off by this: Although the Suzuki is more modern than its predecessor, it does not develop its own character even for a representative of the formally rather monotonous SUV segment. This applies even more to the cockpit's lack of expression, but it convinces with solid workmanship. In general, this is the positive side of the unexcited appearance: the SX4 exudes a solidity, which in the knowledge of the ordinary long-term test and TÜV balance sheets of the brand ensures a decent advance in trust.
So the SX4 doesn't take the lack of charisma bad and takes a seat on the slightly raised and comfortable, but somewhat too soft leather upholstery, opens the really very large glass sliding roof and programs the permanently installed navigation device. All this is series in the top version at the Tiguan price. Likewise, xenon light, 17 inch aluminum, rear view camera, DAB sound system and two-zone automatic climate control. You don't need much more - but you wouldn't get it at all. Above all, the lack of modern assistance systems could be criticized. On the other hand, there is little to complain about when it comes to space: even if the Suzuki is one of the smaller models in the compact SUV class, it is still a full all-rounder. Giant seated people, however, may find the seats in the back seat too narrow. And the trunk is also larger at Tiguan and Co.
The test car is powered by an 1,6 liter diesel with 88 kW / 120 PS, which in terms of temperament is preferable to the petrol engine, which is equally strong and of the same size but has little pull. The four-cylinder is sufficiently powerful and ensures fast progress, especially in the lower engine speed range. At motorway speed, however, it quickly reaches its limits, beyond the 120 km / h it takes patience to accelerate. The engine purchased from Fiat is acoustically well damped, but cannot always completely hide its rough voice. When it comes to consumption, it does a good job, with little effort it reaches five before the decimal point. The dual-clutch transmission is also pleasant, with six gears that are graded to match and whose crawl mode is mildly maneuverable. By the way, Suzuki offers a different type of automatic transmission for the petrol engine, which often meets with reservations in Germany: a continuously variable transmission.
The smooth steering of the SX4 is sufficiently precise, the suspension set-up balanced with a tendency towards comfort. Increased driving pleasure does not come about, good-natured gliding is rather the domain of the Suzuki. If you want to force it to have some dynamics, switch the all-wheel drive to sport mode; then the accelerator pedal tightens and the rear wheels get more power. A nice gimmick if one stings the oats, but for everyday life in a high-rise SUV like the SX4, normal operation is more the order of the day.
Even equipped for the top model, the Suzuki is still a rational car for rational drivers. For the same money, there is significantly less car in the majority of the fancier competition. If you really want to save, choose the entry-level version for 19.490 Euro (Suzuki also regularly offers price campaigns that can really be financially worthwhile). The basic model with petrol engine must do without all-wheel drive; in the lowlands, however, driven front wheels should also be sufficient. The best individual price-performance ratio for SX4 buyers should be somewhere between this basic variant and the top model.