IT is not really surprising that Suzuki has just recorded record UK sales for it has one of the best small car ranges on the market especially the four wheel drive SX4 which offers the advantages of all weather motoring at affordable prices, writes Bryan Longworth
For the SX4 from the Japanese manufacturer provides the benefits of 4x4 traction to motorists at the lower end of this sector which is dominated by the bigger and more expensive all wheel drive vehicles .
The SX4 is an ideal vehicle for tackling the tough wintry conditions we have been experiencing for motorists who cannot afford or do not want anything larger but want the benefits of 4x4 traction and a car that is easy to enter and get out of especially older and disabled owners.
My care was the 2.0 SZ5 DDiS diesel, which is the top model in the range that starts at less than £15,000 for a two wheel drive petrol engined model.
The SX4 five door hatchback is a joint venture with Fiat, and has quite attractive all round styling especially the side and rear. It looks different from other small cars in this class.
The test car could be driven in two or four wheel drive at the flick of a switch or a combination of them both when in automatic mode, which allows the car to be driven in two wheel drive in normal conditions but when it gets slippy as on snow it senses loss of traction and introduces four wheel drive.
It is an extremely user friendly and any owner will be able to operate it as well as the lock mode which maintains full traction up to 40mph in very difficult conditions before switching automatically to 4WD Auto mode - I had to use it once up a steep snow covered hill and it kept me on the move.
The SX4 is a delightful car to drive with light positive steering and a very comfortable ride with comfy spacious seats easy to see instruments and at the rear there is an average sized boot that can be extended.
It is well equipped with standard kit which includes keyless starting, automatic air conditioning, steering wheel audio controls, cruise control, front fogs and plenty of storage.
With the four wheel drive SX4 Suzuki has managed to provide an affordable small but roomy 4x4.
My Verdict: An economical value for money small 4x4.