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Suzuki SX4. Would you buy this car?

frank77frank77 Member Posts: 3
edited March 2014 in Suzuki
I've been searching for a used car for 2 months now!
Matrix, Mazda3, Spectra5, Elantra hatchback, etc.
At least visually I really like the SX4
One just showed up at a dealer near me: 2007, 16000 miles for $13000. They are holding it for me.
But I just went onto Consumer Reports to read owner reviews that were not good. Apparently reliability issues and warranty issues? Now I'm not so sure and I have an hour to decide.
Any advice?????
[Email removed]


  • rangnerrangner Member Posts: 336
    It sounds like you're not in a position to make an informed decision. Forget about the "gotta get it now" thinking. If you're there, they've got you already. Look into what options are on the car, maintenance records etc. Then relax and if it makes sense to you then buy it otherwise walk away
  • gseveregsevere Member Posts: 2
    Take another look at this months Consumer Reports. They rated the Suzuki SX4 as the 3rd most realabile vehicle on the market. Gk
  • johnnyc4johnnyc4 Member Posts: 11
    I have my SX4 Crossover for a year now and so far I have no encounter any problem. I check the new reviews in CR and all were excellent (circle with full red dot) especially its reliability! Before it was not recomended by CR now it's a YES.
  • lamronh49lamronh49 Member Posts: 86
    CR is not a foolproof nor statistically sound system. I recommend you not take them as the Word of God.

    Any "reliability report" that gives different rankings for identical cars, like Ford Taurus vs. Mercury Sable, or Pontiac Grand Am vs. its Buick or Chevy siblings, has some serious flaws.

    Enjoy your new car.
  • nace818nace818 Member Posts: 140
    All of the reports I have read have been for the most part very positive. I bought my SX4 Sport about two months ago and really love it. I've already put 5000 miles on it and no mechanical problems so far, only the accident I spoke of on another page and it held up really well.
  • westashleycrmwestashleycrm Member Posts: 3
    I've had my SX4 Crossover for almost a year and I still love it. The only issue I've had with it is that the tire pressure sensors are very sensitive to cold and has lit up the past two days of very cold - for South Carolina - weather. I've got over 8000 miles on it, and have not had one minute of trouble out of it.
  • kmaxine04kmaxine04 Member Posts: 18
    I've had my sx4 since Sept. 06 when it first hit the lot. i have 40,000 miles on it and everything seems to be messing up. My sensors are all screwed up, had to have a new AC put in, transmission is missin, not to mention the lil rust spots on the car from salt and poor clear coat
  • machellmachell Member Posts: 5
    I bought an sx4 jx and iI'm really impressed. It gets good fuel economy for an AWD 28-32 mpg highway. The suspension offers a comfortable ride and good handling. 143 hp is quite quick around town, very nimble, good brakes, outstanding visibility. The fuel tank is small, you don't even get the windshield washed before you are full! That's enough for 250 miles. The structure is strong and the comfort features work well. It can tackle 12 inches of snow and win. Recently took my 5speed 300 miles through the rockies was passed once by a bright yellow mustang with the bulged hood he must have been proud to own a car with 3x the hp and twice the price of my car. The low gears suit the mountains. On th flat it will do125-130mph what more could you want for the price! Dealer was excellent and regular service is cheap cheap. If it seems slow, buy the 5 speed and drive it at 4-6 grand and you won't feel that way anymore.
  • stapletondocstapletondoc Member Posts: 14
    I cannot recommend this car to anyone. I've had the car 3 weeks and already it's in the shop for an airbag service light. Apparently, the passenger seat is malfunctioning and must be replaced. I can only look forward the check engine light, ESP malfunction light, warped doors, leaky A/C, etc. At this moment, I am waiting to get the car back from the dealership so I can get rid of it. Don't waste your hard earned money on something that is going to fall apart before the warranty expires and has incredibly poor resale value. Buyer beware!
  • stapletondocstapletondoc Member Posts: 14
    Funny, strange....I took my new SX4 crossover touring automatic up the hill from Denver on I-70 towards the Rockies....and it had a difficult time keeping up with the traffic....engine growled like it was fighting for its life....Needless to say, I am very unhappy with my recent purchase. Believing all the hype about comsumer reports and the positive reviews online was such a huge mistake for me. I'm beginning to think many of the reviews were paid adverts by Suzuki to better its horrific reputation here in the USA....just my opinion though. Perhaps I am bitter and jaded because this new car is at Shortline Automotive already being repaired for a faulty airbag sensor in the passenger seat (very common problem for this make of car...fyi).

  • sunnyb1sunnyb1 Member Posts: 4
    Hmmmm, its posts like this that make me think I should forget about getting a SX4 and get a Nissan Cube instead. I'm sorry to hear that you're unhappy w/ your car. Are there any other issues that you've had with it?
  • perry99perry99 Member Posts: 43
    Don't judge the SX4 based on bitter stapletondoc's posts. See his/her post on the "Suzuki SX4 Crossover" forum #88 and my and others' followup postings.
  • kennybeeakkennybeeak Member Posts: 21
    Automatic transmissions are frequently sub-par for optimizing power in small cars. I got my SX4 with a manual transmission specifically so that I could gear down when I need extra power for hill climbing, acceleration, etc.
  • arkainzeyearkainzeye Member Posts: 473
    how is that manual transmission. one of the reviews i read said the manual was clunky. is this truth with the newer SX4?
  • nace818nace818 Member Posts: 140
    I have a SX4 Sport with a manual also. Yes I have to agree that it is a little clunky. But not irritating enough that I would wish for the automatic. I like the extra power. There is one thing I don't understand though. All my life I had the understanding that manuals got better gas mileage than automatics, but this manual is rated 1 mpg less than the automatic. If anyone knows why, please explain. Thanks.
  • kennybeeakkennybeeak Member Posts: 21
    The only problem I sometimes have with the manual transmission is that if I let the clutch out too fast and don't give it enough gas, I'll sometimes stall the engine. I see that as my own klutziness, not a criticism of the SX4. I occasionally did the same thing on my previous car, a Kia Rio. The overriding consideration for me is the extra power I can get with the manual transmission.
  • mandi79mandi79 Member Posts: 12
    I bought an AT, and I can say that I will never buy another!!! I love manual, and I got an auto because I thought it was time for a change, bad move in my opinion! The auto's are slower off the line, and they seem to have more problems with the trans.

    Thanks Mandi
  • nace818nace818 Member Posts: 140
    I've done the same with the stalling. Very embarrasing at a red light with cars all around you!
  • arkainzeyearkainzeye Member Posts: 473
    one plus about the auto trans are. if something goes wrong with it, its covered under the warranty. like if it slips. If your manual slips they are going to blame the clutches and then blame you cause NO one covers the clutch. even if it is defective you would have an impossible time proving it was defective and Not a cause of drivers error..
  • nace818nace818 Member Posts: 140
    Yes, the clutch is a wear and tear item. I try to be careful by letting it out all the way between shifts and NEVER rest my foot on it at any time. Also at long red lights, rather than holding it in I slip in neutral until the light is almost ready to change. I hope this is a good way of minimizing wear.
  • mandi79mandi79 Member Posts: 12
    That's true, but on the other hand there would be a benefit to having a manual when going to drag strips. AT is slower, and not as quick off the line.

  • joehellojoehello Member Posts: 1
    I bought my SX4 in November of 2006, and I really do love the car. It doesn't get stellar gas mileage (I average about 26 mpg), but it is decent gas mileage considering it is AWD. ..and I love the AWD. I use it all the time in the winter, and with the snow tires I put on this car, I can swerve around and pass SUV's all day long. You simply can't compare this car to some of the gas mizers out there since cars like the Aveo, Mazda 3, Kia Soul etc, etc, do not have AWD. That being said, I have had a few disappointments.

    1) 1st, the gas mileage is decent, but this car has a very small gas tank (11 gallons). I used to drive a Kia Sportage, and with my commute, I would have to gas up twice a week. With the Suzuki, I am in the gas station just about every day. I have to or else I'll get stuck too low on gas either coming or going.
    2) I bought the Manual to get more horsepower out of the car. I've never had a problem either keeping up with traffic or going up hills etc. Being able to downshift for more power is the difference. I would bet this car is VERY poky with an automatic. The problem here though is, even going just 65+ miles per hour, the engine always sounds like it is ready for take off. The first few weeks driving this car I kept thinking I needed to upshift when I hit 60 miles per hour, but nope, I was already in 5th gear, the last gear. So keep that in mind: if you do a lot of highway driving, this car is noisy. And because mine is revving so hard all of the time, I have to be careful to maintain my oil changing regimen. I change it every 3500 miles like clock-work and the old stuff comes out black as night with very little viscosity left. I'm currently experimenting with blending some synthetic in as well to make sure my engine is protected.
    3) My only other negative with the car, and this is a biggy, is the terrible warranty. There basically isn't one. 3 years and 36,000 miles is nothing. I've had mine for less than 3 years and I am at 57,000 miles. ...and like a lot of other SX4 owners, at 55,000 miles (2.5 years), my AC unit went and it cost close to $2000 to fix. Nope, not even close to being covered by warranty. Nothing is. There is a 7 year, 100,000 mile powertrain, but read the fine print, almost nothing is covered by that either. Now I knew the warranty was crappy going into this car. My complaint really is the fact that in less than 3 years, the clutch assembly to the AC unit can wear out already, and even more amazing is that when it did, the dealer wasn't anywhere near willing to fix it under warranty. They have just had too many of these fail and Suzuki has never issued a recall. I then discovered that both this AC issue, and a problem with rear axles leaking is a big problem with these cars and neither is covered under any warranty since neither present themselves until after 36,000 miles.

    So I do love my SX4, and don't regret buying it per se, but it is not the "Home Run" I used to think it was, and honestly, knowing what I know now, don't think I would buy another one...
  • nace818nace818 Member Posts: 140
    This AC thing really worries me as I am more than half way there to the 50,000 mile mark and I personally don't have an extra $2000 laying around. Here in Louisiana it is just about impossible to drive without it. I don't know what I would do. Trade before it happens I guess.
  • nace818nace818 Member Posts: 140
    I too am surprised at all the dealership closings. Mine also closed. If I have a major problem, my car would have to be towed about 45 miles. Even a small problem would be a big inconvenience. They were open one day with plenty of cars and two days later I drove by an empty lot. I may not have bought my SX4 Sport sedan if I had known.
  • mandi79mandi79 Member Posts: 12
    Our dealership also closed shortly after we purchased the SX4 Sedan, but we found a great dealer in Sanford, FL Mastro Imports. It is about an 1 1/2 drive, but totally worth the drive, they our a great company.

  • ike3ike3 Member Posts: 81
    And you must have rocks in your head. What's wrong with you? An hour and a half drive one way? They are "worth the drive?" For servicing your SX4 sedan? I would think your time is more valuable than that. If the dealer network is shrinking and these
    cars are presenting issues, if it was me, this car would already be history. That is, if I could find a buyer to buy one of these. I guess keeping the vehicle and driving 3 hours( round-trip) for service and warranty is worth it to you. As former tennis star
    John McEnroe said, "You CAN'T be serious!"
    To me, a vehicle like this is not worth it, given its issues and low resale values.
    Enjoy your (frequent) long drives for servicing at Mastro Imports.
  • kennybeeakkennybeeak Member Posts: 21
    Your point may be well taken, but let's try to be more polite.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Member Posts: 7,704
    even how you get your vehicle serviced is kind of a personal thing. If it works for mandi79 to get their SX-4 serviced an hour and a half drive away then so be it. As long as the SX-4 keeps running right that's the important thing.

    2021 Kia Soul LX 6-speed stick

  • kennybeeakkennybeeak Member Posts: 21
    I got my SX4 Crossover because it's the lowest cost AWD hatchback. Those of you who disparage the SX4, what low-cost AWD hatchback would you recommend instead?
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Member Posts: 7,704
    when it came out. I waited just about another month and decided to buy a 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS. Wanted one of those more.

    But I still like the Suzuki SX-4 and love looking at them out on the road. They look fun to drive and I don't see how anyone can beat their low-priced AWD functionality. And Suzuki is no slouch at kei-class car production. They lead Japan in kei-class carmaking. I look at an SX-4 like it's a kei car.

    2021 Kia Soul LX 6-speed stick

  • laserbluelaserblue Member Posts: 313
    Might as well take this with a laugh.
    I did the same mileage for 1 entire year when I was going out with my girlfriend, got married, had to move, had kids, then divorced, paid lawyers, had to sell my business, appartements and I'm back to 0.
    Making that mileage to get a car fixed and coming back home happy listening to music and enjoying your car... that's nothing.
    Let me tell you, the're are things in life worse than that.
    Road Assistance can't do something about this (compensate)?
  • sx4rockssx4rocks Member Posts: 1
    I can only speak for my car, but in the 7 months I have owned it I have loved it! I got the 5 speed manual and it has handled every hill, turn, and type of traffic imaginable. I am a big man and even after a 9 hour drive I felt fresh.
    I think people have to remember what they are buying. I saw CR "complaint" from one man who said he hated the car. He listed about 15 things he didnt like. Then at the end you find out he was comparing it to a C series Mercedez Benz!
    Considering the price point and functionality, I find the SX4 cleverly put together with a nice ride and reasonable gas mileage considering the size of the engine. I traded my Honda Pilot for this car to save money (son going to college! Yikes!). I loved my Pilot but this SX4 has been a hoot to drive and very reliable. I am very happy with my purchase.
  • a_ca_c Member Posts: 2
    edited February 2010
    Very pleased with my 2008 SX4 purchased summer 2008. It's fun to drive, steering very positive and the manual trans is very crisp to shift.

    The mileage isn't great but I new that when I bought the car. The AWD IS great. I have to go up a hill to get out of my neighborhood regardless of what street I use. When it snows here I always go up the steepest street that is not normally plowed until 2-3 days after the snow BECAUSE I CAN!! Last year, right after an overnight 6" snow I even stopped half way up to let another car back out of their driveway and go down the hill. Two people shoveling their walks stopped shoveling to watch me slip N' slide then back down the hill. I think I disappointed them as I simply restarted from where I was and drove on up the hill.

    The dealership that I bought the car from closed summer of 2009 which was a downer not only because of warranty and service concerns but also because they threw in free oil changes and tire replacement for life. Suzuki has addressed the warranty/service concerns by contracting with the best Lincoln/Mercury dealer in the area (excellent reputation for both their service center and their body shop) to handle warranty and service. Good move Suzuki.

    Would I buy another. Good question. I normally wouldn't expect to replace this car before 2018-2021 and predicting what the auto market will be that far out is beyond my crystal ball. However if a semi drove over my SX4 while it was parked at a rest stop tomorrow I'd sure replace it with another SX4.

    For the record I've had no problems what so ever.
  • stapletondocstapletondoc Member Posts: 14
    For the record, as well, I'm very happy for those who have and/or had a much better experience with the SX4 than I did. I do not doubt that Suzuki can make a good product. Unfortunately, I did not have the same experience with my car, a SX4 touring with automatic transmission. In retrospect, a manual transmission, or an automatic with auto-manual, would have been a much better option for me. This automatic transmission groans and loses considerable speed with the smallest of inclines---not to mention the highway going up the foot hills and the Rocky Mountains. One can forget about using the cruise control when faced with gradations/inclines on the road because the same thing happens then. There is still the question of having to replace my passenger seat because of a malfunctioning air bag sensor. So, for those who think I am comparing oranges to strawberries. Let it be known that it matters not what badge is on the car....I would still have the same concern no matter whom made the car.

    I have not given up on Suzuki, however. I recently test drove the Suzuki Kizashi. It is more substantial car that does not appear to be plagued with the same loss of power (and it gets the same mileage as the SX4...if not better). It will probably replace my current car in the not too distant future.

    No doubt the SX4 is the right car for some folks.

    Hugs and Cheers all around!
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Member Posts: 7,704
    edited February 2010
    this new Kizashi of Suzuki has my interest as well. Let us know if you decide to buy a Kizashi. I read in an ad in a car mag yesterday that Suzuki spent over a billion dollars developing their new Kizashi. Wow...that's a lot of money.

    Suzuki is now partly owned by VW and is selling cars in India. VW recognized their kei-car prowess in Japan and signed on to get their small-car expertise for the Indian market.

    I remember being quite excited about the new SX-4 crossover when it came out. I still like the SX-4 but most of the initial excitement has wore off. Early reports on the Suzuki Kizashi are good where I've read them. Good steering, handling, stereo, power and pickup, even soft feel of interior fabrics.

    Stitched leather for all seats? Or just certain loaded-up Kizashi's? Have to check that one out. I like the look of this car-sort of VW Jetta-like only a bit different. Different in a good way, though. ;) I'll be following the consumer reaction to the Suzuki Kizashi pretty closely as it looks to be the best midsize car for me on the market and I think about that size of car as being appealing to me from time to time.

    There's the new all-electric i-MiEV coming out from Mitsubishi and their concept PX-MiEV gas-electric larger than Outlander hybrid SUV and their proposed Lancer GTS Hybrid that all have my attention as I continue to drive and enjoy our 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS. This new Kizashi from Suzuki is right up there neck and neck with the Mitsubishi's vying for my next automotive purchase dollar.

    2021 Kia Soul LX 6-speed stick

  • stapletondocstapletondoc Member Posts: 14
    Three days ago, I traded my red 2009 SX4 AWD Touring automatic Crossover for the 2010 Suzuki Kizashi SLS AWD CVT/auto-manual in platinum silver. In the past, I was a consummate car snob, only wanting to drive European cars like Saab, VW, BMW, and MB. Seriously, no one has ever accused me of being a Suzuki apologist. Then, Kizashi converted me into a Suzuki believer. I love the Kizzy!!!

    I cannot say enough great things about the Kizashi!!! It feels, looks, and drives like an expensive European car; not unlike the '05 C240 4matic Mercedes I owned in the recent past----but without paying a premium and without $$$$$ A & B scheduled maintenance. If you have not test-driven this car.....go find a dealership and try it. You will certainly be impressed.

    For those critics and car pundits, who are afraid to give Suzuki and the Kizashi the respect it justly deserves, I dare them to find a car anywhere that offers all the options, athleticism, and handsome aesthetics of a Kizashi for less money. One certainly cannot find that at Toyota, Honda, GM, Ford, BMW, Audi, VW, Infiniti, Acura, or Lexus. And yes, the Kizashi can compete with those folks easily.

    Let it also be known that I test drove the 2010 SX4 AWD Crossover with the CVT transmission (with auto-manual). The CVT/auto-manual makes a world of difference---at least for me. It could climb the foothills and highway I-70 in the Colorado Rocky Mountains easily. I would highly recommend it.

    I can only hope my opinion of the Kizashi and Suzuki doesn't change after a few months' and/or years' ownership. I look forward to owning future generations of Kizashi.

    In the future, I will offer more comments in the proper Kizashi section of the forum.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    edited March 2010
    Congrats on the new ride!

    Here's the link (but I guess it'll be moving from Future Vehicles soon if they are at the dealers):

    2010 Suzuki Kizashi.....Very Nice!!!
  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    You may want to write a review and read what others had to say in our Consumer Ratings which you can access from here.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • joeyrabjoeyrab Member Posts: 65
    edited December 2010
    I am looking at either the sx4 hatch or sedan with a manual transmission. It seems with this car you either get a "good" one or a "bad" one. It seems for the most part the car is decent. In my readings here, it appears they had a problem with airbag lights, and "shimmying", I hope 2010 models have them rectified. Also for the member who's oil is as "black as night" makes me wonder if the engine is kind of "crude", not efficient like a Toyota VVT-i for example. I hope alot of early problems have been rectified. I really like this car and will be test driving it soon....Does anyone know if Suzuki engines are know to go 180,000 miles...? I wonder if they are as durable as toyota, honda, etc...
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    “I don't think it's a big surprise given their lackluster sales performance of recent years. They have have low margin, low-priced cars with small volume. That's far from the ideal combination,” said Jessica Caldwell, an analyst with auto information company Edmunds.com.

    The good news:

    "Suzuki said it will continue to honor warranties and will provide automobile parts and service through its parts and service dealer network."

    American Suzuki to file for bankruptcy, end U.S. auto sales (LA Times)
  • joeyrabjoeyrab Member Posts: 65
    My next car, or so I thought, was going to be a new Suzuki SX4. July 2013, was when I was thinking I could do it. But now screw it. I have been looking at this car for the last 4 years....now Suzuki pulls the plug. I blame them and their, "I don't give a crap attitude."
    If Suzuki wanted to, they could have been a player, a small player, but in the game at least. When Kia first got here, it was junk. Absolute garbage. Better now, but not by a whole lot, they are selling tons of cars. Yes, Hyundai bought them, and they are somewhat rebadged Hyundai's, but Suzuki made, (not rebadged Daewoo's) are good cars. It's almost like they didn't care. No advertising. No dealerships. No partnerships. Nothing. I'm glad they split from VW, but if something worked out, the dealer network at least could have expanded tri-fold......
    It's like they just put their cars here and thought they would sell by themselves. Why would you buy one now? The value won't be as good, and who is going to do warranty repairs on it? They'll cut a deal with someone, although not sure I really trust them now.
  • morin2morin2 Member Posts: 399
    edited November 2012
    Buying a Suzuki has been a matter of buying the car, rather than the company and its limited dealer network, for quite a while now. I have a 2011 SX-4 AWD crossover 6-speed and love this little car. I have no intention of selling it now that Suzuki USA is ending. It is likely that used suzukis, always a bargain when compared to Honda, Toyota and Subaru, will be even cheaper now. So there may be some bargain opportunities.

    If you are the type of person who places a large value on the standard warranty and has service done at the dealer, then a new Suzuki is probably not your best bet. I do my own service and almost never return to a new car dealer for anything except captive parts.

    The biggest consideration with orphaned suzukis is insurance costs. Already higher cost than other small cars, the fear of unavailable body parts will probably cause even higher insurance rates.

    To read more about such discussions, check out the more active suzuki forum at: http://clubsx4.com/forum/forum.php
  • peggyc2peggyc2 Member Posts: 1
    I also love my 2008 SX4 sedan that I have owned for 4 1/2 years. Absolutely rates up with the best cars I have owned. My only issue with it is the clock is indented in the dash and hard to see during the day. :)
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Member Posts: 7,704
    edited May 2013
    if it wasn't for the 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS that came out about 4 months later I would've bought a Suzuki SX-4 hatchback. I love that hb! I was also really close to buying a Suzuki Kizashi sedan. I really love the Kizashi. I wanted a red 6-speed Kizashi. Really didn't want ta see Suzuki leave the U.S.car sales market. :cry:

    Suzuki SX-4

    2021 Kia Soul LX 6-speed stick

  • dbrunkdbrunk Member Posts: 1

    I have a 2008 SX4 which I purchased new. Now I have 107K miles on it. My total cost of repairs over the life of the car? $10. I needed a new gas cap. This car is a beast in the snow (I live in the mountains) and I average about 29 mpg in combined driving. My goal is to reach 200K miles and I have little reason to believe I won't get there.

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