KF1, Singapore – The Suzuki Swift Sport is a rather surprising little hatch. On paper, it has similar performance figures as some other “conventional” hatches in the market.
But this is a car that has been adored by fans over the years, and remains a hot favourite in the aftermarket tuning scene. It is, for all intents and purposes, a genuine hot hatchback.
Now in its third generation, the brand spanking new Swift Sport is now available in Singapore as a stick-only option. That’s right, three pedals.
For the time being anyway. The launch event itself was a rather special one, held at the KF1 circuit in Kranji. The launch of a go-kart for the road at a fully functioning go-kart circuit. Go figure.
Externally, the Suzuki Swift Sport retains the same styling cues as the first-generation car, complete with blacked-out A-pillars and dual-tone colour schemes available on an indent basis. The honeycomb grille is much wider than it is on the standard Swift.
The Swift Sport has a subtle front lip spoiler, side skirts, a rear diffuser with dual exhaust pipes, and 17-inch polished alloy rims.
The interior has been similarly enhanced, with red gauges and plenty of red interior accents that further differentiate the Swift Sport from its lesser sibling. Rightly so, because the Sport produces over 40 more horsepower.
The hallmarks of any hot hatch are as follows: Big performance, in a small practical package. It’s a formula that has worked for generations, and a template that applies to the Swift Sport.
Of course, emissions laws and regulations have inhibited the growth of such vehicles as of late, and Suzuki has fallen victim to these changes too.
As such, the new Suzuki Swift Sport is bestowed with hybridisation tech. Before you diehard purists start raising your pitchforks, it is not a full-on hybrid vehicle, but a mild-hybrid.
On paper, the Swift Sport produces 127 horsepower from its 1.4-litre engine. Nestled in the engine bay is a 48V lithium-ion battery and an integrated starter generator, which is able to boost power to the engine by 13hp and 53Nm.
Along with Suzuki’s Boosterjet turbocharging tech, the mild-hybrid system enables the car to produce less carbon dioxide but retain its exhilarating driving capabilities.
In essence, there are no electronic gubbins mucking about with your driven wheels.
What the 48V mild-hybrid system does is fill in the gaps where the 1.4-litre engine lacks some extra oomph, to ensure you get the highest amount of toque available, as low down in the rev range as possible. All told, the entire system produces 235Nm of torque.
Despite the hybridization tech, the weight of the car isn't inhibited by any means. The new Suzuki Swift Sport weighs in at just 1020kg, which bodes well for the power-to-weight ratio.
Coupled with the fact that you've got three pedals and a 6-speed manual box, it might just be one of the last, purest examples of Japanese hot hatchbacks before the inevitable switch to electrification.
PHOTOS Champion Motors
SUZUKI SWIFT SPORT
Engine 1373cc, inline4, BOOSTERJET Turbo, with 48V mild Hybrid System
Transmission 6spd manual
Top Speed 210km/h
Fuel Consumption 4.7l/100k