A modern Suzuki features the all the reliability and indestructible build quality we have come to associate with Japanese cars. Though Suzuki has long been considered a premium name in the motorbike industry, it has always been overshadowed by other Japanese marques in the car market. No doubt some of this is due to the timing of its arrival in that market. It didn’t import cars to Britain until 1963, far later than many rivals, and even then only tentatively so.
In its home market, Suzuki fights successfully on equal terms with the rest of them. Indeed the tiny ‘Wagon R’ is one of Japan’s best-selling cars year after year. In India, a partnership with Maruti puts Suzuki right at the top of the pile, offloading cheap and cheerful cars to a continually-expanding middle class.
In Britain, though, Suzuki seems the ‘nearly’ man of the Japanese manufacturers, the one who has too often flattered to deceive. Cheap small cars, 4x4s and SUVs are its bread and butter, the extent of the product range. In contrast, the more successful manufacturers have models in just about every market sector. In a classic ‘chicken and egg’ situation, Suzuki also has a far smaller dealer presence than its rivals.
Some of this is down to the inalienable truth that Suzuki’s cars have lacked the killer punch or pioneering USP of those from other Japanese brands. Corporate reasons play their part, too. A partnership with VW was hailed as a new dawn for the company’s aspirations in Europe yet quickly unravelled. In America, a similar tie-up with the behemoth GM would also fail. Some of it is also down to old-fashioned bad luck. Suzuki’s small 4x4s could have taken the Britain by storm in the late 1980’s, offering a fashionable alternative to small hatchbacks. Instead, their initial popularity was broadsided irrecoverably by concerns that they were unstable and unsafe when cornering.
All of this has left Suzuki in an extended state of limbo in the UK market. Its current range seems to be syncopated and to lack focus, inspiration or evolution. It certainly lacks any commercial fireworks. And yet from these ashes it has produced the new Swift, a car that is a whole lot better than you’d expect it to be. The company has announced ambitious plans for UK growth in the next few years. Maybe these will be the real deal rather than another false dawn.
Details of etyres’ best-selling and recommended tyres for Suzuki’s cars can be found through the menu to the left of this page. Alternatively, you can find tyres to fit your Suzuki by entering its tyre size into the search tool above. etyres’ national sales team is also available seven days a week on 0800 028 9000. We would be delighted to offer impartial advice to help you find the right tyres for your Suzuki.