Tuesday, April 28, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Suzuki Kizashi Sport GTS: ‘Premium feel without premium pricing’

By
March 17, 2011 |

Say you want a four-door family car, but you don’t want to be stuck with plain vanilla.  You want something fun, but not too big.

You could spend $30,000 or more and get an Audi A4 or an Acura TSX.  There are a few other choices if you want affordable performance, but the tradeoff is lack of luxury and comfort.  One car that seems to be a great balance is one that most people have never even heard of, a Suzuki Kizashi.

The Kizashi is Suzuki’s idea of a sports sedan.  While it’s not anything close to a BMW M3, it is pleasantly surprising. The Kizashi, Suzuki says, is “premium feel without premium pricing.”

Suzuki has a lot of experience in building small cars. That “premium” feel starts out with clean, conservative styling that looks substantial. We wish that the sporty GTS trim was given a more aggressive look, but it would have probably made the car more expensive.

The premium feel blows you away as soon as you get inside.  Suzuki provides a contemporary and upscale interior atmosphere with expensive feeling materials and rich textures.  Get inside the Kizashi Sport GTS and get inside other comparable cars from Toyota or Nissan in the same price range and you will feel the difference.  The Suzuki feels more like an Audi than a Toyota.  Driving enthusiasts will appreciate Kizashi’s sporty, elegant and informative instrument panel, while consumers seeking a luxury sedan will be pleased with the vehicle’s available leather seating and premium quality materials rivaling those of upscale competitors.

There are three-stage heated seats and three-position memory seating.  There are even small details such as French seams and high-density, low-fatigue foam in the seats.  The Kizashi also offers extensive sound insulation to help suppress road, tire and wind noise and it works.  Unlike many other cars in this price range, the Suzuki is smooth and quiet.

“Premium” also means safe and the 2011 Kizashi does not disappoint.  It incorporates a long list of standard safety equipment, including a class-exclusive eight standard airbags, electronic stability program’ an anti-lock braking system with electronic brake-force distribution, and a tire pressure monitoring system.

Additionally, the 2011 Kizashi already meets higher-speed front crash standards that will take effect in 2012 and rigorous side barrier and side-pole crash standards that will take effect in 2014. Better visibility is achieved with standard projector beam headlights, supplemental side-mounted signal lights, fold-down rear headrests, available rear sonar and backup camera.

The Japanese built Kizashi is equipped with a 2.4 liter DOHC 16 valve four cylinder that puts out 185 horsepower when ordered with the manual transmission.  Cars with automatics get only 180 horsepower.  While that’s not a huge number, it still results in respectable performance.  With the manual transmission and the standard front-wheel drive, the Kizashi can run to 60 mph from a standstill in 7.4 seconds and all the way to a top speed of 124 mph.  The engine feels responsive at lower speeds due to short gearing in the lower gears while the sixth speed is good for cruising on the freeway.

If you want to accelerate you’ll need to work the gearbox, since there isn’t a lot of torque under the hood. Fortunately, the shift linkage works well.

Another interesting feature of the Kizashi is the availability of all-wheel drive.  Kizashi’s next-generation i-AWD system is a rare option in its class, as this performance feature is more often found among luxury offerings. Engineered to provide outstanding traction in inclement weather, the sophisticated all-wheel-drive system delivers enhanced traction in low-friction situations. Activated by the driver, the system sends power to the rear wheels immediately upon acceleration.

Torque split, up to 50:50 front/rear, remains dependent on several factors, including wheel slippage, throttle and steering input.  If you live in an area that receives a lot of snow, that may be of great importance to you but otherwise you are better off avoiding it.  The added weight and friction really slows the Kizashi down and, to further add salt to the wound, the AWD requires the automatic transmission that makes it even slower.

How much would you expect to pay for such a car?  The Kizashi starts out at only $19,000 with our Sport GTS model costing only $23,000 with FWD and manual transmission. That is a huge bargain when you look at what else is available at that price.  Suzuki likes to compare the Kizashi Sport with the Audi A4.  That may be stretching it, but they do have a point.  The A4 does give you more but it costs significantly more.  When you compare the features and the premium feel of the Suzuki, you would be hard pressed to find anything comparable.

Comments

comments

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    Yolo Basin Foundation celebrates 25 years, announces major fund drive

    By Felicia Alvarez | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Teens embrace public art through Pence Gallery program

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Robotics team members reflect on their big win

    By Kellen Browning | From Page: A1

     
    City’s eco-classes will explore water, wildlife, pests, composting

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A1

    Many hands make light work

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Capay Organic hosts Cinco de Mayo party

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

     
    Yolo County Bar Association honors Magna Carta, probation chief

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

     
    Sierra Club leaders will meet April 30

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Faithful Partner Fund established for K-9 officers

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4 | Gallery

     
    Pedro party, lunch benefit Yolo Hospice

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Author — injured arm in sling — will sign her new book

    By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A4 | Gallery

     
    Chicken manure compost class planned

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Party celebrates release of Lescroart’s new novel

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Curious about calculus? Try Barcellos’ new book

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    Master Gardeners teach workshops throughout county

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Holmes’ Green Team wins state award

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5 | Gallery

    Vacaville contractor convicted of fraud

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

     
    Pinball show features lots of free play

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

    Blueberries, apricots arrive at Sutter market

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7 | Gallery

     
    New UCD art lecture series named for Thiebauds

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7 | Gallery

    Asian garden open for tours this weekend

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10 | Gallery

     
    .

    Forum

    Waking up to the awful truth

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    She knows their business

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

    Vaccine bill is vital for our health

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

     
    Thanks for camera’s return

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

    Tom Meyer cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A6

     
    David Brooks: Love and merit

    By David Brooks | From Page: A6

    Davis’ active transportation plan is right on target

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

     
    Dog’s freedom isn’t worth it

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

    .

    Sports

    Another big inning does in Devil softballers

    By Thomas Oide | From Page: B1

     
    Huge first frame lifts DHS to big baseball win

    By Spencer Ault | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Blue Devil girls run it up on Grant

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    UCD golfers move into first at Big West Championship

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    AAA roundup: Cardinals break out big bats in Davis Little League win

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3 | Gallery

     
    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    Get a positive vibe Wednesday from Tha Dirt Feelin’

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3 | Gallery

     
    Momentum Dance Company plans spring concert

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

    Sacramento Youth Symphony holding open auditions

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9Comments are off for this post

     
    Winters Theatre Company performs on the Big Day of Giving

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    ‘Contempt of Court’ next up at Winters Theatre Company

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9

     
    There’s no place like home in DMTC’s ‘Wizard of Oz’

    By Bev Sykes | From Page: A9 | Gallery

    Have breakfast in Oz on May 16

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

     
    Black Sea Hotel to perform in Village Homes

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    DMTC’s young performers present a steam-punk ‘Snow White’

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9 | Gallery

     
    .

    Business

    .

    Obituaries

     
    .

    Comics

    Comics: Tuesday, April 28, 2015 (set 1)

    By Creator | From Page: B5

     
    Comics: Tuesday, April 28, 2015 (set 2)

    By Creator | From Page: B7