By KBB.com Editors
The Reno is a fun and inexpensive compact car with sporty styling and a long list of standard features. Although the Reno does not have the hardware to truly compete with the Mazda Mazda3 or Volkswagen GTI, it remains an attractive compact with great aftermarket potential, an important attribute for entry-level buyers who might like to customize their cars. Priced well under $15,000, the Reno faces some tough competition from Honda's Fit and Nissan's Versa, two new compacts also within easy reach of most first-time buyers. While the Reno does not offer the same high resale value as the Fit or the Versa, it does include more standard features and a seven-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty at no extra charge.You'll Like This Car If...
If you're in the market for a new car and would like to stay around $14,000, you might find the Reno's unique combination of style, quality and equipment hard to ignore.You May Not Like This Car If...
While the Reno's exterior styling is attractive, it isn't as expressive as some of the other entry-level vehicles in its class. If you're used to the polished refinement found in Honda and Toyota cars, the Reno's rubbery shifter and lackluster handling probably won't impress you.What's Significant About This Car?
The Reno line is reduced to a single trim level with only a few options.Driving It Driving Impressions
The sense of refinement conveyed by the Reno's exterior styling and interior design continues when you turn the key. Its 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine starts quickly, idles quietly and revs smoothly.
The Reno accelerates adequately enough, but isn't going to win many races to the other side of the intersection. Highway ride is small-car comfortablemostly steady with an occasional bump or jolt.
Standard CD/MP3 Player
The Reno's standard eight-speaker stereo includes a CD player with MP3 playback capability.
Standard Front Side-Impact Airbags
We like that the Reno's extensive standard features include driver and passenger side-impact airbags in addition to front airbags.
The passenger cabin of the Suzuki Reno conveys a high level of quality. The cloth seats are comfortable enough and the rear seat is roomy. Silver-themed accents throughout include silver-ringed gauges and air vents plus a silver center console and trim. Building on the versatility enabled by its five-door design, the Reno includes plenty of storage compartments. The hatchback lifts to reveal a very usable trunk, and the versatile 60/40 split rear seatback collapses to create a practical hauling space.Exterior
With modern styling courtesy of the Italian design firm Italdesign, the Suzuki Reno looks good when parked alongside its more established competitors. Bright, clear-lens lamps front and back add to the five-door's contemporary aura, though bigger wheels would fill the wheel wells nicely and give the Reno a more aggressive stance.Notable Standard Equipment
The Reno may be the best-equipped vehicle in the country for around $14,000. Included as standard on every Reno are an AM/FM stereo with MP3-compatiable CD player and eight speakers, power windows, heated power mirrors, power door locks, tilt-steering wheel, front side-impact airbags, rear defroster, five-speed manual transmission, air conditioning, height-adjustable driver's seat with lumbar support and a rear wiper/washer.Notable Optional Equipment
The Convenience Package adds steering wheel audio touch controls, keyless entry and cruise control. Stand-alone options include a four-speed automatic transmission and, on base models only, anti-lock brakes (ABS).Under the Hood
The Reno is powered by a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that delivers 127 horsepower. Though not terribly quick, the engine does provide enough low-end torque to allow for quick intersection crossings and modest passing maneuvers, though the balky five-speed manual saps the fun out of driving a stick. With so little horsepower on tap, one would expect better fuel economy, yet the Reno's fuel economy figures are far from world-class. By comparison, the Toyota Corolla's four-cylinder engine delivers 126 horsepower while returning 10 more miles per gallon in both city and highway driving.
2.0-liter in-line 4
127 horsepower @ 5600 rpm
131 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 23/30 (manual), 22/31 (automatic)
The Suzuki Reno has a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $14,094; adding the automatic transmission bumps the price to $15,094. Before you buy, be sure to check the Fair Purchase Price to see what the Reno is selling for in your area, and check the Incentives page for further possible savings. Although relatively new to the market, the Reno does not hold a strong resale value, falling far behind the figures set by the Honda Civic, Mazda Mazda3 and Scion xA, and just below those of the new Chevrolet Aveo. The Reno, however, does hold similar residual and resale values as the Kia Rio5.