The rear seat-backs in the test car had a 50:50 split and a simple tug on the straps will increase the luggage capacity from 129-litres, which is enough for a sizeable wheeled suitcase, to a maximum 774-litres.
The rear seat-backs in the test car had a 50:50 split and a simple tug on the straps will increase the luggage capacity from 129-litres, which is enough for a sizeable wheeled suitcase, to a maximum 774-litres. And, for added convenience there is a remote release for the tailgate.
One small niggle is the top of the dashboard, which rakes down from the top of the centre console to the base of the windscreen. Although it is in a nicely textured dark plastic, under certain conditions it reflects the light on to the windscreen, causing a lightly veiled effect.
Apart from this, the Suzuki Alto's interior is pleasant and functional without resorting to gimmicks and the only item remotely quirky is the SZ4's rev-counter that is mounted into the fascia adjacent to the main instrument nacelle.
The lower part of the dashboard is in a lighter grey than to top, a colour that extends to the central tunnel, with its oddments trays and cup-holders. The glovebox is a large drop-in bin, which has a greater capacity than a good few larger cars and is very handy, at the same time allowing more legroom for the front passenger.
The centre console protrudes into the cabin and houses the comfort controls in the lower section and the simple audio system with digital display, in a satin-chrome effect surround, in the upper part. The roof-mounted antenna for the MP3 compatible CD/radio (with two speakers) seems to have trouble holding a signal and the tuner has a tendency to wander off-station occasionally.
As for driver comfort, all Suzuki Altos have power steering and a tilt-adjustable steering column and in the SZ4, the driver also gains a height-adjustable seat. The front seats have more bolstering than those in the rear and are very comfortable, even on long journeys.
Across the range, the front windows are powered and those in the rear push open. They all have front and side airbags, ABS with EBD and Brake Assist, ISOFIX anchors and top tethers, which some of its competitors don't have. Of the three trim levels the SZ4 is the most well equipped with manual air-conditioning and pollen filter, 14-inch alloy wheels, in place of the standard steel, fog lamps, front and rear curtain airbags and Electronic Stability Programme (ESP).
Suzuki Alto Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Suzuki Alta SZ4|
|Colour||Fortune Rose Pearl Metallic|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||13.5 seconds|
|Top Speed||96 mph|
|Fuel Type||Unleaded Petrol|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||74.3 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBA|
|Warranty||3 years / 60000 miles|
|Price (when tested on the 29/07/09)||£7,960|