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2009 Suzuki SX4

Overview
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2009 Suzuki SX4 Review

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Best known in America for its small, rugged SUVs, Suzuki is steadily cultivating a new image, one that centers around small, fuel efficient cars. Leading the charge is the 2009 SX4 Sedan, which arrives in both base guise and in a well-appointed Sport trim. Like the SX4 crossover, this four-door sedan shares basic chassis and mechanical bits with the Suzuki Swift, a well-respected player in European and Asian markets. Despite the SX4 nomenclature originated by its all-wheel-drive cousin, the Sedan is strictly front-drive – at least for now. It's also nearly 15 inches longer than the hatchback version, most of that stretch to accommodate its formal trunk. A step-up replacement for the old Aerio, the SX4 Sedan gives Suzuki an affordable compact entry that's far more youthful and fun-to-drive than either its existing Forenza or Reno.

You'll Like This Car If...

Those with slight nonconformist leanings who need a practical daily transporter but also want a serious dose of driving fun – and demand it all at an attractive price – will be impressed with the attributes of the 2009 Suzuki SX4.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Drivers whose tastes run more towards hard-line performance – particularly with a Teutonic flavor – or who prefer more aggressive styling might be better off considering something slightly pricier, like a Honda Civic Si, MAZDA3 or VW Jetta 2.5/GLI.

What's New for 2009

The 2009 Suzuki SX4 Sport receives a built-in Garmin navigation unit as standard equipment, a first for a car in this price range. Also new is a lower-priced base Sedan and additional content added to the Sport's Touring package.

Driving the SX4

Driving Impressions Although it still ranks higher in practicality than in pure exhilaration, the SX4 Sport is a nicely balanced package with dynamic character that goes well beyond the original SX4 crossover....

With less weight to move and only two wheels to drive, the engine shows even greater enthusiasm here, but acceleration is definitely more spirited when it's paired with the standard manual gearbox. The biggest difference, however, is in the suspension tuning, which is commendably crisp without being unduly harsh. While the SX4's basic MacPherson strut and torsion beam design carries over, the Sport's more rigid body structure, lower ride height, upgraded shock absorbers and low-profile Dunlop tires on 17-inch alloy wheels (the Crossover rides on 16-inchers) impart an entirely different temperament to the vehicle. Toss in communicative power steering and capable four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, and the SX4 Sport reacts confidently to driver inputs, even without the optional traction and stability controls.

Responsive Handling
Crisp suspension tuning coupled with decently grippy low-profile tires on the largest wheels in the segment help the SX4 Sport live up to its name when the roads get twisty.


Outstanding Visibility
The SX4's large glass area complemented by front quarter windows and oversize outside mirrors provides the driver with exceptionally good front, side and rear sightlines.

2009 Suzuki SX4 Details
2009 Suzuki SX4 photo Interior

Nicely finished and appointed, the SX4's cabin offers generous passenger space in both front and rear quarters. Much is shared with the SX4 crossover, including the dash and door panels, intuitively-positioned switchgear and an abundance of hard plastic surfaces. One key difference: The Sport trim's front bucket seats feature more prominent bolstering and merit high marks for both lateral support and long-range comfort. The SX4's aft quarters possess sufficient head and leg room for two average-sized adults, but three-across occupancy is definitely a kids-only proposition. A new split folding rear seat replacing last year's fixed seatback allows access to the 15.0 cubic feet of trunk capacity.

Exterior

Suzuki claims the SX4's front-end was inspired by a traditional Japanese Kabuki mask but, beyond a few bolder creases in its unique soft fascia and revamped grille openings, the headlights, hood and fenders are all identical to the SX4 crossover. The Sedan has an arched roofline and relatively large glass area that help create a roomier cabin and afford exceptional outward visibility. Pronounced fender flares accentuate the Sport's standard body kit (front and rear valence panel extensions and tasteful side sills), while additional visual and functional enhancement is provided by largest-in-class 17-inch alloy wheels wrapped in 205/50 all-season tires.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

An economical daily commuter with legitimate enthusiast overtones, the 2009 Suzuki SX4 LE Sedan's extensive creature-comforts roster starts with air conditioning, power windows, locks and mirrors, a four-speaker AM/FM/CD/MP3 audio system, tilt steering column and front, front-side and side-curtain airbags. The Sport trim adds GPS navigation, the Aero package, keyless entry and 17-inch wheels. Both trims share the same mechanical highlights including four-wheel anti-lock brakes with electronic brake force distribution, a 143-horsepower engine and a five-speed manual transmission. The warranty is equally noteworthy. Basic bumper-to-bumper numbers are an industry-average three years/36,000 miles, but Suzuki also includes a free loaner car and covers pricy powertrain elements with a seven-year/100,000-mile zero-deductible blanket that's fully transferable.

Optional Equipment

The SX4 Sport offers two key upgrade groups that can be added singly or in combination. The Technology Package brings fog lamps, cruise control, leather-wrapped steering wheel with integrated audio, and cruise control buttons and Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity. The Touring Package adds traction and stability controls, automatic climate controls, heated side mirrors, Smart Pass keyless remote locking and starting, and a nine-speaker upgraded audio system with six-disc CD changer. Prime single options include a four-speed automatic transmission, integrated iPod adapter and dealer-installed XM Satellite Radio.

Under the Hood

All 2009 Suzuki SX4 Sedans share the same 2.0-liter DOHC all-aluminum in-line four-cylinder used in the SX4 crossover. Here, too, the engine makes a solid 143 horsepower and 136 pound-feet of torque and is fitted with a variable-runner intake manifold that helps broaden both those output curves. Because of the more performance-oriented gear and axle ratios used in cars equipped with the standard five-speed manual transmission, an SX4 Sport with the optional four-speed automatic actually earns slightly better EPA fuel economy numbers. In either case, the SX4 Sport's front-drive-only configuration helps trim well over 100 pounds off its curb weight compared to the crossover, a factor that significantly improves acceleration.

2.0-liter in-line 4
143 horsepower @ 5800 rpm
136 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/29 (manual), 22/30 (automatic), 22/30 (base, LE, manual), 23/31 (base, LE, automatic)

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2009 Suzuki SX4 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.3
Out of 10

Based on 257 Ratings for the 2007 - 2013 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.6/10
    Quality
    8.4/10
  • Reliability
    8.8/10
    Performance
    8.4/10
  • Comfort
    8.2/10
    Styling
    8.5/10

GOOD, ECONOMICAL, ALL-WHEEL DRIVE

By on Tuesday, July 01, 2014

I owned and sold this car

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
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "GREAT PRICE, EASY TO PARK, GOOD MILAGE"

Cons: "MANUAL HAS MORE PEP AND MPG"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"WITH THE PUSH OF A BUTTON YOU HAVE FRONT WHEEL,ALL-WHEEL, AND 4 WHEEL DRIVE. WE AVERAGE 28 MPG. WE ARE CONFIDENT THAT THIS VEHICLE WILL PERFORM NO MATTER WHAT THE ROAD CONDITIONS. THE HATCH-BACK MAKES IT CONVENIENT, EASY TO PARK AND THE GREEN COLOR IS EASY TO FIND."

2 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Great car for the money!!!

By on Friday, June 20, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 75,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "AWD, overall quality, interior and cargo room."

Cons: "Could use a larger gas tank (for trips)."

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

"Bought this car new - put 75,000 miles on it (half those miles are highway travel miles). Other than an air conditioning repair, never had any issues with it. The AWD works great - no trouble in snow or wet conditions. The interior provides plenty of room for 5 adults. Fold down rear seats and hatchback opening provides room for bigger cargo than you'd think would fit. Ours has a 5spd manual tranny - fun to drive and a lot of pep! We've made 3 trips from Oregon to Florida - very comfortable cruiser. We plan on selling it only because we need a larger vehicle (new grandbabies!)."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Excellent value, runs very well in all weather

By on Sunday, June 01, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 63,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "great price , great on gas, very reliable"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

In Excellent Condition 2009 with Navigation system built in!!!

"Great starter car, very reliable, runs great and very stable in all kinds of weather, great visibility, safe on highway and easy to maneuver in city."

In Excellent Condition 2009 with Navigation system built in!!!

I love this car and wish I could buy a new one.

By on Saturday, May 10, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 116,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Quick, Sure Footed, Intuitive Controls"

Cons: "Medium Gas Mileage (< 30)"

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

"This car may well be the best I've ever owned. I'm 6'04 and I have plenty of head room and it just keeps on going with nothing but routine maintenance. The only deficiency is mileage, but that's understandable with the power and pickup this car puts out. I would be buying a new one of these little dynamo's if Suzuki hadn't abandoned us in the lurch. Bad Form Suzuki."

10 people out of 18 found this review helpful

great gas mileage, really small

By on Wednesday, May 07, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 40,000

10 4.0
overall rating 4 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
4/10
Value
6/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
5/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
2/10

Pros: "gas mileage"

Cons: "no room for passengers or storage, blows all over"

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

"I should have done more research before I bought this car. The gas mileage is great and it's amazing in snow and ice, but it's tiny tiny tiny. There's no room for anything in it, the wind blows it all over the road and on the highway the big truck can be really scary with their drafting. If I had it to do over again I would have not bought it. The resale value is terrible too."

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

best salesmans car ever

By on Tuesday, May 06, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 102,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "best value i could have hoped for"

Cons: "well, its not the biggest beast on the road..."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"what - all wheel drive and great gas milage? i drove this thing 102000 miles already and have had to do nothing but put front brakes and 2 sets of tires. i reccomend the 5 speed as it takes the 4 cylinder to the next level. great trunk space and convertability with the folding seats. great for car seat too."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

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