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1997 Suzuki Sidekick

Overview
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Vehicle Highlights

Information shown for entry-level SUV.

Fuel Economy:
City 21/Hwy 24/Comb 22 MPG
Max Seating: 4
Engine: 4-Cyl, 1.6 Liter Transmission: Manual, 5-Spd
Country of Origin: Japan Country of Assembly: Japan

1997 Suzuki Sidekick Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.3
Out of 10

Based on 93 Ratings for the 1989 - 1998 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.8/10
    Quality
    8.5/10
  • Reliability
    9.0/10
    Performance
    8.3/10
  • Comfort
    8.1/10
    Styling
    8.0/10

This has been a VERY reliable car.

By on Monday, December 30, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 97,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
6/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
5/10

Pros: "very reliable"

Cons: "no conveniences"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"My late husband bought this car, used, in 1996. It sort of languished in the driveway for many years although it seemed to always run. After my husband died in 2007, I started fixing up this car: new paint job (original red color), new wheels and tires, new sound system, new top. It looks great and runs great. It has hardly any conveniences but that has also been a plus because there's less to go wrong. It's coming up on 19 years old and still looks so sporty!"

4 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Form, Function & Finesse ~~!!

By on Wednesday, October 23, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 190,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Surpasses most other SUVs, pricey or cheap."

Cons: "VERY hard to find anymore, unfortunately~~"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"After doing a frame-off restoration on a 1988.5 Suzuki Samurai, and thinking I would keep it forever, learned that my left knee could no longer handle manual shifting. LOVED that car, it would go anywhere and was just savvy enough to draw a crowd where ever we went. So, began to look for an automatic Suzuki 4WD, as by this time I am spoiled at how these little vehicles can go without complaint, and slither through places that are often considered sidewalks . .. very handy when traffic is backed up and sliding out is important, eh ~~ Suzuki builds a fine vehicle, and more's the pity that they never captured the US market, and are no longer being imported here. I bought the Sidekick JX a little over a year ago, with 183000 miles, a busted head gasket and other sundry mechanical issues. The body was solid, interior quite decent, and the wheel rims quite stunning. Bought a rebuilt engine and fully remanufactured automatic transmission, along with numerous other restoration parts, as I wanted to make this little Suzuki superb again. The 'fit' is excellent, with ample headroom and plenty of leg room, and it's easy access both in and out. Gets phenomenal gas mileage; about 25 city and just over 30 mpg highway with Regular fuel, and of course has the easy shift into 4WD without having to get out of the car and reset the hubs. Will thread through narrow trees in the forest or slide up a sidewalk, if necessary to get past an accident on the road. These very narrow Japanese SUVs are remarkable in their agility and economy. Yes, this Suzuki Sidekick is a keeper, and the fun of ongoing restoration of small items is enormous fun, as well. This car is more like a 'pet' than basic transport, though must confess that every day is all the more enjoyable with the low cost of insurance, fuel and upkeep ~~!!"

7 people out of 10 found this review helpful

The little Suzuki that can!

By on Thursday, February 14, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 138,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Small but spacious, quick, 4x4 is useful."

Cons: "kind of sluggish in some situations"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have the suzuki sport 1.8l model with the 4x4 and this thing gets great gas mileage and has never given me any trouble. Keep the oil changed and tires in good condition and you're set."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

1993 Suzuki Sidekick

By on Thursday, February 14, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 215,900

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Fun driving experience. Reliable."

Cons: "Fuel economy. Sluggish. Poor interior quality."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This may be one of my favorite cars I've ever owned. I bought it used in 2008 with more than 160,000 miles. I love driving it any chance I get! I have the two door soft top convertible. It offers a direct feel for the road and loves to hug corners like no other! One complaint I have is with the automatic transmission. At highway speed the (only) 3-speed transmission makes the engine rev really high, causing less mpg than I think I could get out of the small 1.6l. I wish I had the five-speed manual, I believe that with the extra gears the engine could relax more. Plus, it would make it ten times more fun to drive, in my opinion. But even with an auto trans, this car is a blast! It begs to go faster through the curves. Now almost five years later and nearly 216,000 miles, the car has caused me only a few minor headaches. Like, when it's cold, the transmission refuses to shift out of first gear for the first few starts and it sometimes skips second gear altogether (another reason I want the manual)! In four years we've had one breakdown and had to replace the water pump, and I want to replace the tranny, not that it needs it, it still work everyday, I would just prefer a manual, I'd say confidently that it is a nice reliable car. Every time you jump in and turn the key, it starts right up!"

3 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Great Car. Saved my life.

By on Friday, February 08, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 160,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Great price, safe, reliable, fun, and comfy"

Cons: "No rear cupholders."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought my 97 Sidekick 2 years ago. We've had several older models before. This one was amazing, it was also our first automatic sidekick. It wasn't fast, but it got you where you needed to go. Gas mileage was okay. About 23mpg. This car had small issues like rear defrost didn't work, but that's okay. I bought it after the previous owner did an engine overhaul, but they didn't do that well, because only 4 months after I bought it I was in the garage replacing a Head gasket. Other than that, I've had nearly no issues, until two days ago, I was driving through the mountains in the snow (Which this car is exceptional at) and I hit some black ice, and decided it would look good on top a rock. Airbags deployed, and I'm thankful for that, for I wasn't wearing a seatbelt. It kept me safe and I escaped with only some bruises."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

My second Sidekick

By on Tuesday, September 04, 2012

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 35,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Lasts forever with simple care."

Cons: "Hard to find replacement units for A/C condensors."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"The Virgin Islands have steep hills everywhere, so are hard on transmissions and brakes. My 97 Sidekick was the standard for rental cars in its time; bought it 10 years ago from a car rental and sold it to my next door neighbor this summer with 65,000 miles on it. Loved it so much that I bought a '98, almost identical in appearance, from the original owner, with only 34,000 miles on it. I love the simplicity of these older cars - you can count on the windows rolling up and down, for one thing! I love the side-opening rear gate, which will never fall on my head. Its modest 1.6 liter engine gets me up our hills slowly but steadily, and the good low gear in its automatic transmission, and strong brakes, make descending a wet rainy hill very safe. For a small car it holds an astounding amount of stuff. There are oodles of 90's Sidekicks here on little St. John (population 5,000); people hate to give them up and all the mechanics know every single part!"

4 people out of 4 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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