Suzuki, We Hardly Knew Ye!

Suzuki, which announced this week that it would stop selling cars in the U.S. was memorable mostly for it’s small, but very loyal, fan base.

Small, because it wasn’t enough to keep the brand going.  Loyal, because I received more feedback from Suzuki owners than just about any other brand.

Any negative comment that I made in a test drive was often responded to by some young Suzuki buyer questioning my intellegence, or qualifications to review a vehicle.  It was often accompanied by profanity.  And, usually, the twenty-something would admit that they hadn’t driven a competitive vehicle.

But they were loyal.

Generally speaking, I found Suzuki’s to be o.k., a little on the cheap side, and not quite up to the competition.  Maybe the kind of car that you would find at a K-Mart.

The Kizashi sedan was probably the nicest Suzuki I’ve driven.  The company was pushing it hard for North American Car of the Year a few years back. 

I can’t recall what vehicle won that year, but I don’t think the Kizashi got a lot of serious consideration.

And when people ask me about the worst vehicle I’ve ever driven…

The Suzuki Swift usually gets that dubious award.  The test car they provided me was not only cramped, with an ugly interior and a really poor driving experience.  It smelled terrible!  Like a dead fish.

As coincidence would have it, that was the vehicle I drove to cover the Charity Preview for the auto show that year.  Should have used valet parking.