Compact car; Built in Canada, Japan
  • 2-door hatchback
  • 4-door sedan
  • transverse front-engine/front-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $1,000 – $1,400*


1992 Suzuki Swift GA 2-doorhatchback


1992 Suzuki Swift GS 4-door sedan


1992 Suzuki Swift GT 2-door hatchback


1993 Suzuki Swift GS 4-door sedan


1994 Suzuki Swift 4-door sedan

Pros:
  • Acceleration (GT)
  • Fuel economy
  • Handling/roadholding (GT)
Cons:
  • Noise
  • Passenger room

For the most part, Swifts have reminded us of Japanese subcompacts from the mid-1980s: noisy, cramped, basic–but stingy with fuel. As economical runabouts, they’ll do–but just barely.

Overview

Introduced for 1989, the Swift came in 2-door hatchback and 4-door notchback form. Riding a longer wheelbase than the 2-door, the 4-door model came in GA, GL, and GS trim, with a 70 horsepower, 1.3-liter 4-cylinder engine. The GA edition came only with 5-speed manual shift, while other Swifts had a choice of the 5-speed or 3-speed automatic transmission. Two-door hatchbacks came three ways, too: entry-level GA, midlevel GL, and sporty GT. Equipped with a dual-overhead-cam 1.3-liter engine, the GT included a close-ratio 5-speed manual gearbox, 4-wheel disc brakes, sport seats, sport suspension, and 175/60R14 tires. Swift was also marketed under the Geo brand as the Metro.

Yearly Updates

1991 Swift
The GL 2-door hatchback and GL 4-door notchback sedan were gone. Two hatchbacks carried on: a base GA with the 70 horsepower engine and the sporty GT with its 100-horse dual-cam engine. Four-door models came in GA and GS trim, each with the 70-horsepower engine and a choice of transmissions.
1992 Swift
All models got redesigned front fascias and a fresh dashboard layout.
1993 Swift
Automatic-locking front doors were installed for 1993, but little else was new.
1994 Swift
Base GA models added a passenger-side mirror, and the GA hatchback got a removable cargo cover. Swifts were redesigned for 1995.

Engines

transverse front-engine/front-wheel drive

All Swifts except the GT held a single-cam 1.3-liter 4-cylinder engine, rated at 70 horsepower. A dual-overhead-cam 1.3 liter four, developing 100 horsepower, went into the GT hatchback, which came only with 5-speed manual shift. Other models might have either the 5-speed or an optional 3-speed automatic transmission.

dohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 1.3/97
Engine HP 100
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 83
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed manual

28/35

21.4

ohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 1.3/79
Engine HP 70
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 74
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed manual
3-speed automatic
37/43
29/34
35.8

Road Test

Expect considerable engine and road noise from any Swift, due to lack of sufficient sound insulation. Both engines growl and snarl their way through traffic. In addition, the 70-horsepower has trouble keeping up with cement trucks. On the other hand, the 100-horsepower dual-cam engine revs eagerly and produces quick acceleration. Gas mileage is terrific, too. We’ve averaged close to 36 mpg with a 4-door model and 31.4 mpg with a GT hatchback.

With its firmer suspension, the sportier Swift GT maneuvers deftly through traffic and takes tight turns with impressive agility. Unfortunately, the GT’s ride gets stiff, so the overall road experience is mixed.

A 2-door Swift isn’t much fun for tall people. Six-footers have adequate leg room in front, but their heads are likely to hit the ceiling. Rear leg room is minuscule unless the front seats are pushed well-forward.

Ratings

Model Tested: 1990 Suzuki Swift GT

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.

Performance

Acceleration - 2
20%
Fuel Economy - 7
70%
Ride Quality - 2
20%
Steering/Handling - 2
20%
Quietness - 1
10%

Accommodations

Controls/Materials - 3
30%
Room/Comfort Front - 4
40%
Room/Comfort Rear - 2
20%
Cargo Room - 2
20%

Other

Value - 2
20%

Total: 27

Specifications

2-door hatchback
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
89.2 147.4 62.6 52.4
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
10.3 10.6 4
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
37.8 36.5 42.5 29.8
4-door sedan
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
93.1 161.2 62.6 53.5
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
11.5 10.6 4
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
39.1 37.7 42.5 32.0
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 1994 Swift 2-door hatchback

NHTSA

(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - 3
60%
Front Passenger Injury - 4
80%

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
N/A0%
Rear Passenger Injury - N/A
N/A0%

HLDI

(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Engine misfire
Description: Rough idle may be caused by a problem with the engine-control computer. (1993)
Engine misfire
Description: A problem with the throttle-body base gasket results in rough idle and throttle stumble. (1990-92)
Battery
Description: The dome light may stay on due to a faulty door-jamb switch. (1990-91)
Hood/trunk
Description: Because the spot welds for the striker were misaligned, the hood may not latch properly. (1990-93)

Recall History

1990-93
Description: Hood inner panel may crack; hood could suddenly open.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.

Pricing

Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.