Andre De Kock
Motorsport Editor
4 minute read
17 May 2019
7:52 pm

Suzuki Ertiga excels

Andre De Kock

The Ertiga is powered by four-cylinder 1 462cc petrol engine that produces 77kW of power at 6 000rpm and 138Nm of torque at 4 400rpm.

This writer has, over the years, made no secret of the fact that I much prefer race cars over road vehicles.

Their obvious superiority in terms of performance, handling and sound apart, race cars have a pureness of functionality that makes them infinitely more desirable than road cars.

Every single thing on a race car is there for a specific, practical reason. Apart from its paintwork, nothing on a race car is there just to impress. Wings and spoilers are there to provide downforce, wide wheels house huge rubber for better grip and exhausts are large and noisy because they must channel massive amounts of gas. Many road car owners spend lots of money to make their vehicles look mean, while mean looks on race cars is a coincidental by-product of the fact that race cars have a mean job to do.

Which is a long way removed from the second-generation Suzuki Ertiga, but bear with me. When Suzuki launched the vehicle a few month ago, they underlined the fact that this is a people carrier – finish en klaar. And, to embrace that status with credibility, it needs to seat seven people. That is the first criterion and Suzuki meets it. The Ertiga will, indeed, house seven adults, should the need arise.

To make that happen, Suzuki has made the new Ertiga longer, wider and higher than its predecessor – functionality that makes it possible for adults to reach and use its third row of seats without contortions. Comfort is the second criterion and Suzuki meets expectations with extra shoulder, leg and head room, while the dark cloth seats offer extra support thanks to a new spring design.

Passengers also benefit from a quiet cabin via double door seals, moulded noise absorbing material in the roof and double floor damping.

The driver faces a height-adjustable D-shaped steering wheel with a multi-information trip display. The instrument cluster is housed in an upright dashboard which integrates a radio with USB and Bluetooth connectivity.

The centre console has two air-conditioned cup holders and the vehicle boasts 12V charging sockets for the front and second-row occupants.

Other interior features include air-conditioning, central locking, electric windows and mirrors, a high level rear brake light and power steering. In safety terms, the Ertiga is equipped with front airbags, seat belts for all seven people, a massively rigid body and impact-absorbing structures in the front to protect pedestrians, should the Ertiga hit one.

To prevent such unfortunate incidents, the vehicle has ventilated disc brakes front and drums rear with ABS and EBS assistance. The Suzuki sits on 15-inch steel wheels in 185/65 R15 rubber. We did not find the little bus pretty, but with beauty being in the eye of the beholder, you should decide about that yourself, after viewing the photographs herewith.

The Ertiga is powered by four-cylinder 1 462cc petrol engine that produces 77kW of power at 6 000rpm and 138Nm of torque at 4 400rpm. In the case of the test vehicle, this was routed to the front wheels via a five-speed manual gearbox.

Given a kerb mass of 1 170kg and the fact that it is designed to carry many passengers, the Ertiga does not claim to be a high performance vehicle in any which way. Which means that it has sluggish acceleration and one needs to rev the engine uncomfortably high to reach the sweet torque spot. Suzuki provides no official acceleration figures, but reckon the Ertiga will reach a top speed of 170 km/h. We did not try to establish either, but can report the vehicle will keep up with city traffic and cruise at 120km/h on the highway, though any sort of uphill called for a downshift to maintain that velocity.

On the other hand, the Ertiga’s makers aim the vehicle squarely at really large families, housewives who need to ferry school soccer teams around and senior citizens who take other senior citizens on group outings. All of them will happily swap performance for space, comfort and fuel efficiency, which are the exact characteristics this Suzuki provides.

We managed an overall fuel usage figure of 7,3 l/100 km during the test. So, we have a vehicle designed with a pureness of functionality – which is the thought with which we started this story

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