The new Swift has raised the bar
H. Kishie Singh
all-new Swift is
here, and there is every chance that it could set the sales
graph on fire. It certainly is going to be the car difficult to
beat in this segment, which can be summed up as the small
car-big volume market.
looks remain the same but then the eye cannot be expected to see
changes that are measured in millimeters. The new Swift is 90 mm
longer, thanks to an increased wheelbase of 40 mm. It is 5 mm
wider. The height remains the same. The forward sloping C pillar
has been rounded, giving the Swift a sportive look. It is also
30 kg lighter than the outgoing model. A small change but it
offers better fuel efficiency.
Now to answer
that most asked question at the beginning — the petrol engine
Swift is expected to give 18.6 kmpl, and 22.9 kmpl for the
diesel version. That is about as good as it gets in these days
of fuel prices that have gone through the roof.
The noise and vibration levels of the car have been reduced
The new Swift
comes in three models. The body type is the same, hatchback,
with five doors and five seats. The car comes with the K-series
petrol engine with VVT and the DDiS diesel engine. More on them
models, the LXI and LDI, have A/C and heater fitments as
standard that a decade ago were considered luxuries. It has an
electronic power steering (EPS) plus tilt steering. If you exit
the car and leave your car keys in the ignition or the lights
on, a buzzer sounds to remind you to do something about it.
VX i and VD i, in addition to the above, have power windows on
all four doors. A tachometer is added to the instrument panel.
Fog lamps are standard, front and rear. The ORVMs (outside rear
view mirrors) — you should be familiar with this term by now
— are electronically adjustable and house the turn indicators.
The interior is
tastefully finished. The highlight being a silver accent wrap
around the cockpit and doors. It stands out against the black
dashboard. The seats are fabric.
The top models
ZX i (petrol) and ZD i (diesel) are fully loaded. They have two
airbags in front, ABS, EBD with brake assist, besides automatic
climate control facility.
system also leaves nothing to be desired. A total of six
speakers — 4 speakers plus 2 tweeters. It has an auxiliary
input plus USB. The audio controls are on the steering wheel and
are illuminated. The volume control is automatic speed based,
which means that as speed increases and road noise increases,
the volume is maintained at the set decibel level.
seat is height adjustable in addition to the fore and aft
movement. And, yes, the seat belt also is adjustable. A very
comfort inspiring safety feature. There is a rear window
de-fogger plus wiper wash. The seats are larger and body
vibration, harshness levels are reduced, making for a smoother
and gentle drive.
instrument panel could be from a high-end luxury sedan. It is a
multi-information LCD display. In addition to the speedometer,
odometer, trip meter, it computes the fuel average, low-fuel
warning light, seat belt-not-fastened light, outside temperature
and, of course, clock.
The petrol engine is the 'K' series engine, which can be found
under the bonnet of the Alto, the Wagon R, the Estillo and the
'A' Star. It is lightweight, aluminium and rust proof. With the
variable value timing (VVT), it increases power output, improves
fuel efficiency and is low on maintenance. The oil change
intervals are 10,000 km, and the spark plug life is enhanced. It
is a 1200 cc engine.
engine is the DDiS technology. It is the 1300 cc multi-jet
common rail system, which means better fuel consumption and
optimised NVH. The green oil filter ensures an
environment-friendly BS IV engine, that is easy to maintain.
The new Swift
has raised the bar on all levels and is set to do battle with
the likes of the GM Beat, Ford Figo, Honda Jazz and the Toyota
Liva. It is going to be an interesting 2012!