A street car named Dzire

Suzuki has released the latest version of the smaller of their two subcompact sedans, the 2021 Suzuki Dzire (the bigger one is the Ciaz). Retaining the fuel efficiency and budget-friendliness of its predecessor, the updated Dzire comes with a bolder look and is equipped with more features. It comes in two variants: the Dzire GL with a 5-speed manual and the Dzire GL+, which has Suzuki’s Auto Gear Shift that features an Intelligent Shift Control Actuator to automatically operate the clutch.

As mentioned, the latest version has a bolder look, mainly due to its prominent front grille with chrome garnish, as well as its large, distinctive LED headlamps. In a time where the trend among car manufacturers seems to be thin and sleek headlamps, Suzuki stays in its own lane with the Dzire, resulting in its striking looks. Finely crafted chrome accents along the body and rear LED taillamps complete the Dzire’s look.

All available colors of the Dzire have a clean and simple look; the GL variant comes in Arctic White Pearl, Premium Silver Metallic and Midnight Black Pearl, while the GL+ variant comes in Sherwood Brown Pearl, Oxford Blue Pearl, Magma Gray Metallic, and the all-new Phoenix Red Pearl.

For the Dzire’s interior, a contemporary design theme is what greatly compliments the modern lifestyle of its owner. The primarily black interior, with hints of silver accents, similarly reflects that of the exterior: simplicity and functionality. Centered on the dashboard is a 7-inch infotainment panel. Although its interface might seem a bit outdated as compared to other current models, it still checks all the essential boxes that an infotainment system should.

The only problem I encountered with the dashboard wasn’t in regards to its functionality, or lack thereof, but with its positioning of the two cupholders, as the space provided is too small for my average-sized thermos. The cupholders seem to be more suitable for a can of Coke or a short beverage from Starbucks. Thankfully, however, this is just a minor hiccup and there are bottleholders on the doors as well.

In terms of all-around spaciousness, the Dzire has average room all throughout, especially taking into consideration its diminutive dimensions. Both head- and legroom are not a problem, while wiggle room from left to right might be the one aspect that’s most compromised. Same thing goes for the backseats, except the one occupying the middle seat might feel a bit cramped.

There are a number of USB ports and accessory pockets, both at the front and at the back, very accessible to everyone in the vehicle. Its tilt-adjustable, D-shaped steering wheel is equipped with hands-free Bluetooth connectivity, which is of great help to the driver when playing music or answering calls. Lastly, its 378 liters of trunk space is sufficient, especially given its subcompact size.

Similar to that of its predecessor, the Dzire is powered by a compact 1.2-liter VVT engine, which produces max outputs of 82hp and 113Nm. Its high combustion efficiency, low friction, and light weight all add up for an optimally fuel-efficient performance, a characteristic always appreciated by all consumers.

The variant that I test drove was the GL+. I felt that its Auto Gear Shift was a bit odd and quite jerky. When stepping on the gas, there seemed to be a slight delay in the vehicle’s reaction and would, occasionally, jerk before actually accelerating.

The Dzire feels very short, but still has decent overall size and height, which ultimately allows for good mobility. The combination of the Dzire’s compact size and maneuverability is something that will more than come in handy when weaving through the dense Manila streets.

The Dzire’s HEARTECT structure is light and highly rigid, lowering fuel consumption and improving dynamic performance. An Electronic Stability Program detects wheel slippage and adjusts engine torque and brakes when needed. Moreover, Hill Hold Control prevents the car from rolling backwards on slopes, while its reverse parking sensors aid parking maneuvers. The only upgrade I would suggest would be to pair the reverse parking sensors with rear cameras projected to a screen on the dashboard to further enhance its assistance.

At a time when affordability, functionality, and accessibility are top priorities to many, the all-new Dzire is a vehicle that perfectly suits such categories. With a starting price of only P648,000, the Dzire can more than be that everyday, budget-friendly and fuel-efficient vehicle that you can happily take wherever, whenever.

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