Suzuki Swift Hybrid

The Oh-So-Popular Suzuki Swift Can Now Be Had As A Hybrid

As EVs struggle to leave the showroom floor, wariness towards electric cars has forced many automakers to alter their green strategy altogether. Instead, we’re now seeing more and more consumers flock toward hybrids instead, as a more convenient, affordable, and reliable middle-ground between the ICEs of yesterday, and the EVs of tomorrow. It remains unclear as to what the folks at Suzuki have in store for electrification for now, but they’re definitely not going to miss out on the hybridisation trend, now bringing electrified power to the popular Swift.

The Suzuki Swift Hybrid, just about to go on sale here in the UK, should be familiar to most of us who’ve driven Swifts in the past, but with subtle, yet crucial, refinements to where it really matters. It sees a new 1.2-litre ‘Z12E’ mild-hybrid (MHEV) three-cylinder engine, which is now 8% more fuel efficient than the outgoing powertrain. Noteworthy is the fact that it has pretty low CO2 emissions, just 99g/km, and in the right trim, the new Suzuki Swift Hybrid has a total combined fuel consumption rating of 64.2mpg – really spectacular figures all around.

Suzuki Swift Hybrid

(Slightly) Better Performance, Far Improved Efficiency

Compared to the old ‘K12D’ engine, this new mild-hybrid powertrain is able to eke out those fuel efficiency gains by optimising cylinder turbulence, redesigning the variable valve timing intake, and increasing the EGR flow rate. All minor tweaks, but the effects are immediate. It will be further boosted by that aforementioned MHEV self-charging hybrid and a tiny 10Ah lithium-ion battery pack. This miniscule 12V hybrid unit does pack a punch though, where it mostly functions as an integrated starter generator, in addition to regenerative braking.

Providing boosts while accelerating and during vehicle take-off, the total power output is a modest 2.3kW, alongside 60Nm of torque. What is rather neat though, is how Suzuki could package the entire mild-hybrid into a diminutive and lightweight unit, adding a mere 7kg of weight to the entire car. Yet, despite these lower emissions figures and better fuel economy, the Suzuki Swift Hybrid sees slightly improved performance. Horsepower remains the same, although its torque output is now a tad higher at 112Nm than the old ICE-only model.

Suzuki Swift Hybrid

Same Old Suzuki Swift, But Made Better In Every Way

On that note, acceleration to 62mph is slightly faster, and you can still spec the Suzuki Swift Hybrid with either a manual transmission or an optional CVT. Elsewhere, we’re seeing more refinements in its creature comforts. Suzuki has gone through great pains to improve its ride quality and handling, as well as make the cabin quieter and more pleasant to be in. A part of this is thanks to Suzuki’s renewed focus on streamlining the Swift Hybrid’s aerodynamics. In addition, this efficiency drive sees a new tyre fitted, with 15% lower rolling resistance.

And, given Suzuki’s keen eye for simplicity and lightweight design, despite having to carry a hybrid powertrain, the Swift Hybrid tips the scales at just 949kg. Or, if you desire supreme all-season and all-terrain capability, Suzuki aims to unveil a 4WD model later this year. Most of everything else – the safety systems, interior tech, exterior design, and a good warranty – is a familiar sight for current Swift owners, but all made a tad better here or there. Already a very popular model, I expect the introduction of a hybrid makes the Swift all the more appealing.

Suzuki Swift Hybrid

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *