2010 Suzuki Kizashi

2010 Kizashi Photos
2010 Suzuki Kizashi – Click above for high-res image gallery Shut your eyes and say the word "Suzuki" out loud. Unless you're a moto-head or one of those rare Geo Metro fanatics (they exist, trust us), the image that springs to mind isn't very nice. Odds are that the car your subconscious conjures is tiny, cheap and bizarre. It's probably named something forgettable like "Aerio" or totally inaccurate (and forgettable) like "Esteem." Forgettable cars tend to attract forgettable customers. Don't believe us? Suzuki referred to their recent crop of owners as "subprime." Ouch. But, with that pain comes some truth. And in an industry long known for complete and total self delusion, Suzuki's admission was cathartic across both sides of the automaker/auto journo aisle. The Kizashi drives better than basically everything in its class. But what would cause Suzuki to be so blunt? A number of factors, as it turns out. For one thing, "subprime" is so 2008. Meaning that relying on folks with poor credit to snap up your cars because they're so cheap just ain't good business these days. Nor is outsourcing big, potentially huge moneymakers like seven-passenger SUVs to General Motors. There's nothing inherently wrong with the XL7 other than the fact that it's based on the Theta platform, just like the (defunct) Pontiac Torrent and Saturn Vue. Smartly, Suzuki has indefinitely suspended XL7 production. More importantly, rather than not making bad cars, Suzuki might just be in the middle of a product renaissance. Those familiar with the plucky little SX4 are well aware that it's a great driving, high content, practical hatch that's incredibly inexpensive (name another car featuring all-wheel drive and navigation for under $18,000). But you may not know the SX4 is half-Fiat, penned by none other than Giugiaro and half-designed by the Italian giant. So what Suzuki needs to really pull off a rebirth (or at least the early stages of a rebirth) is a fully 100% Suzuki-designed car that's not just "good enough," but "better than." And according to Suzuki, the all new 2010 Kizashi is indeed such a vehicle. But is it? %Gallery-75701% Photos copyright ©2009 Jonny Lieberman / Weblogs, Inc. Tough to tell from the outside. While worlds better looking than all other U.S.-bound Suzuki vehicles (save the five-door SX4), the Kizashi is too derivative. Viewed head on, the hood looks lifted from a Chrysler PT Cruiser, the face is pure goatee-Volkswagen and the headlights appear to be Chrysler Sebring-y. None of the elements are particularly bad looking, but they aren't boat-floating either. Still, from certain angles, the Kizashi's grille is pretty assertive – just don't stare too hard for too long. The side view is (again) middle-of-the-road and simply not novel, with the C-pillars coming from the Chevy Malibu and the long nose, short deck looking quite Mitsubishi Lancer-ish, if not outright Sebring. But it's not bad. The little trunk lid (don't be fooled, the trunk itself is big) is all Bangled up and again, neither bad nor …
Full Review
2010 Suzuki Kizashi – Click above for high-res image gallery Shut your eyes and say the word "Suzuki" out loud. Unless you're a moto-head or one of those rare Geo Metro fanatics (they exist, trust us), the image that springs to mind isn't very nice. Odds are that the car your subconscious conjures is tiny, cheap and bizarre. It's probably named something forgettable like "Aerio" or totally inaccurate (and forgettable) like "Esteem." Forgettable cars tend to attract forgettable customers. Don't believe us? Suzuki referred to their recent crop of owners as "subprime." Ouch. But, with that pain comes some truth. And in an industry long known for complete and total self delusion, Suzuki's admission was cathartic across both sides of the automaker/auto journo aisle. The Kizashi drives better than basically everything in its class. But what would cause Suzuki to be so blunt? A number of factors, as it turns out. For one thing, "subprime" is so 2008. Meaning that relying on folks with poor credit to snap up your cars because they're so cheap just ain't good business these days. Nor is outsourcing big, potentially huge moneymakers like seven-passenger SUVs to General Motors. There's nothing inherently wrong with the XL7 other than the fact that it's based on the Theta platform, just like the (defunct) Pontiac Torrent and Saturn Vue. Smartly, Suzuki has indefinitely suspended XL7 production. More importantly, rather than not making bad cars, Suzuki might just be in the middle of a product renaissance. Those familiar with the plucky little SX4 are well aware that it's a great driving, high content, practical hatch that's incredibly inexpensive (name another car featuring all-wheel drive and navigation for under $18,000). But you may not know the SX4 is half-Fiat, penned by none other than Giugiaro and half-designed by the Italian giant. So what Suzuki needs to really pull off a rebirth (or at least the early stages of a rebirth) is a fully 100% Suzuki-designed car that's not just "good enough," but "better than." And according to Suzuki, the all new 2010 Kizashi is indeed such a vehicle. But is it? %Gallery-75701% Photos copyright ©2009 Jonny Lieberman / Weblogs, Inc. Tough to tell from the outside. While worlds better looking than all other U.S.-bound Suzuki vehicles (save the five-door SX4), the Kizashi is too derivative. Viewed head on, the hood looks lifted from a Chrysler PT Cruiser, the face is pure goatee-Volkswagen and the headlights appear to be Chrysler Sebring-y. None of the elements are particularly bad looking, but they aren't boat-floating either. Still, from certain angles, the Kizashi's grille is pretty assertive – just don't stare too hard for too long. The side view is (again) middle-of-the-road and simply not novel, with the C-pillars coming from the Chevy Malibu and the long nose, short deck looking quite Mitsubishi Lancer-ish, if not outright Sebring. But it's not bad. The little trunk lid (don't be fooled, the trunk itself is big) is all Bangled up and again, neither bad nor …
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Retail Price

$18,999 - $26,899 MSRP / Window Sticker Price
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Engine 2.4L I-4
MPG 20 City / 29 Hwy
Seating 5 Passengers
Transmission 6-spd man w/OD
Power 185 @ 6500 rpm
Drivetrain front-wheel
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