In a sea of small crossovers, the Suzuki SX4 S-Cross has been eclipsed by the competition, at least in terms of media attention. We admit that we’ve rarely talked about the subcompact crossover, even though it’s been around for a while. Originally introduced in 2006 and sold in some European markets under the Fiat Sedici name, the B-segment model now enters its third generation avoiding the “SX4” prefix.
Its predecessor was certainly not the most attractive model in its class, but the new one is a step in the right direction as it looks a lot more grown-up and rugged to complement its all-wheel-drive nature. Made in Hungary, the new S-Cross adopts a much wider piano black grille flanked by three-point LED headlights giving it a modern appearance. The larger wheel arches with a black plastic body coating also contribute to the crossover look more than its predecessor.
Significant changes have also taken place at the rear as the Suzuki S-Cross now has clear taillights that are much wider than those of the old model. The designers also modified the bumper to accentuate its exterior nature and there is a plastic skid plate on the front and rear. It’s still a soft-roader at the end of the day, but at least it looks better than the model it replaces.
While the Japanese marque says it is an “all new” model and a “complete change”, we can’t help but notice that it looks more like a heavy facelift. This is especially true if you check the dimensions of the vehicle, which have remained largely the same. It is 4,300 millimeters long, 1,785 mm wide and 1,585 mm high, with a wheelbase of 2,600 mm. All three numbers are identical to those of the second generation SX4 S-Cross.
The location of the exterior mirrors also betrays the car’s true identity, and the same could be said of the interior where the side gills appear to have been carried over. There’s a new nine-inch touchscreen mounted at the top of the center console, with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, but everything else looks very familiar. Whether it’s the air conditioning controls, the drive mode selector, or the six-speed manual transmission shifter, we’ve all seen them.
Open the hood and you’ll find a turbocharged 1.4-liter gasoline engine fitted with mild hybrid technology and developing 127 horsepower (95 kilowatts) and 235 Newton-meters (173 pound-feet) of torque. It’s borrowed from the updated Swift Sport and does 0 to 62 mph (100 km / h) in 9.5 seconds or 10.2 seconds if you opt for the four-wheel drive model wearing the Allgrip badge. Besides the previously mentioned six-speed manual transmission, there is also an automatic transmission with the same number of gears.
Sales are expected to start in Europe next month, with Latin America, Oceania and Asia to follow in 2022.