Suzuki S-Cross 1.4 Boosterjet 48V Hybrid Motion 5dr

  • Manual
  • Petrol
  • 53.2 mpg
  • 5 door suv
  • 120 g/km CO2
  • 129 bhp Engine power
  • 120 g/km CO2 emissions
  • 53.2 mpg Fuel efficiency

Ten Second Review

Suzuki's S-Cross compact SUV gains a sharper look and more equipment but otherwise continues as before, offering the brand's 48V mild hybrid tech courtesy of the company's 1.4-litre Boosterjet petrol engine. The electrification claims to deliver a 20% running cost improvement. Plus there's plenty of space for a crossover of this size, lots of kit for the money and, unusually in this class, the option of a proper lockable 4WD system in the top version.

Background

Suzuki must find it frustrating to see other brands doing so well in the thriving Crossover market. The Japanese maker has, after all, been offering products of this sort for some time, most notably the first generation SX4 model, originally launched way back in 2006, easily pre-dating the original Nissan Qashqai that most people think pioneered this class of car. That very first SX4 was a little too small, a little too shy and retiring and a little too poorly promoted to set the sales charts alight the way its Nissan competitor did, but Suzuki watched, learnt and came back fighting. As a result, in 2014 we got the SX4 S-Cross, a much more competitive proposition and a model that's gradually evolved. In 2020 it gained mild hybrid assistance for its 1.4-litre Boosterjet petrol engine and in late 2021, the looks were facelifted too, creating the car we're going to look at here, a compact SUV but a particularly spacious and really quite efficient one.

Driving Experience

This revised S-Cross carries over the 1.4 Boosterjet Hybrid 129hp petrol engine used on the pre-facelift model. You may be familiar with the way that mild hybrid engines work but just in case not, here's a quick re-cap. Basically, energy that would otherwise be lost when braking or cruising off-throttle is harvested via a kinetic energy recovery system and sent to a small lithium-ion battery that here has been placed beneath the front passenger seat. This is used to drive a belt-driven 'ISG' unit (an 'Integrated Starter/Generator') and power the engine's stop/start system. Suzuki's current 48-volt set-up can also deliver a couple of other important benefits. The first is something quite unusual amongst current mild hybrids - the ability for this car to idle and even coast on full-electric power, though only below 10mph. The other benefit here is something supposed to be now quite common amongst mild hybrid models - the ability to 'torque-fill' under acceleration to compensate for turbo lag. Which is just as well because this S-Cross Hybrid's 'K14D'-series engine was reduced in power a little when the MHEV tech was added to it, plus the car's electrified tech adds 65kgs of extra weight (in the case of the ALLGRIP 4WD version). But at the same time it gained 5Nm of torque (235Nm in total). The 62mph sprint takes 10.2 en route to 118mph. There's an auto gearbox option. And the brand's proper lockable ALLGRIP 4WD system is fitted to the top 'Ultra' variant.

Design and Build

Visually, the S-Cross has always looked rather dull, so the aesthetic changes made here will be welcomed by dealers, giving this SUV a bolder, more muscular design that enhances its presence with larger and more angular wheel arches and smooth flowing lines. The front design incorporates a raised bonnet line, a piano black front grille and new design 'three LED position' headlamps supposed to help portray a high centre of gravity. This theme continues at the rear with larger combination lamps that integrate horizontally with the rear centre garnish to emphasise a sense of width, in addition to roof rails and integrated rear spoiler. Otherwise, it's as you were. This car remains a mid-sized 'Qashqai'-class SUV that's a little larger than the norm, around 4,300mm in length. Inside, no changes have been made. Up front, it's an inoffensive but not unpleasant piece of design and the fixtures and fittings feel well screwed together from the Hungarian factory, although some of the materials are a bit scratchy. The centre-dash infotainment screen still has graphics that look a bit after-market but it certainly includes quite a lot, with sat nav and 'Apple CarPlay'/'Android Auto' smartphone-mirroring as well as a DAB tuner and Bluetooth. The generous 2,600mm wheelbase length frees up plenty of interior room (the 430-litre boot is one of the biggest in the class) and there's very decent rear seat space too. Though the bench doesn't slide, the backrest reclines though a choice of two angles. The twin sunroofs of the top SZ5 model do rob a few centimetres of headroom though.

Market and Model

Pricing is quite a bit higher than it used to be for the S-Cross. The car is now priced at around £25,000 for the base 1.4 Boosterjet Hybrid 'Motion' variant with manual transmission - and just under £30,000 for the 1.4 Boosterjet Hybrid 'Ultra' ALLGRIP version, again with manual transmission. Six-speed automatic transmission is available optionally on both grades at £1,350. Standard equipment for the base 'Motion' model is comprehensive and includes seven airbags, 17-inch painted alloy wheels, three-signature LED projector headlamps for low and high beam, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity, Traffic Sign Recognition, a Blind Spot Monitor, Adaptive Cruise Control with a speed limiter, keyless entry and start, dual zone auto air conditioning, heated front seats and front and rear parking sensors. Moving up to top 'Ultra' spec adds 17-inch polished alloy wheels, leather seat upholstery, integrated on-board navigation, a panoramic sliding sunroof and further driver safety and convenience with the fitment of a 360 view camera. The S-Cross is available in a total of six different shades, of which one is a solid colour and five are optional metallic finishes.

Cost of Ownership

Suzuki reckons that the 48-volt mild hybrid tech has delivered improvements in fuel economy and emissions of up to 20%, though it's difficult to verify that claim with any real accuracy. The WLTP figures show a front-driven version of this model managing 53.2mpg and 120g/km, while the ALLGRIP 4WD version delivers 47.8mpg and 133g/km. It helps that this remains one of the lightest cars 8in the crossover class. Even the ALLGRIP variant weighs in at only 1,220kgs. This car's insurance group is 25D - or 26D for the SZ5 manual. Its BiK tax band is rated at 30% (or 32% for the ALLGRIP variant). An owner would be paying £165 of VED for the first year of ownership (£205 for the ALLGRIP) and £140 of VED from year 2 on. As with all Suzukis, this one is covered by a three year/60,000 mile warranty, plus a year of AA Suzuki Assistance, providing 24 hour UK and European roadside assistance, recovery and associated services. There's also a 12 year perforation warranty.

Summary

The S-Cross has long needed a bit of extra pavement presence - and gets it here. Otherwise, this model's attributes remain as before, namely its spacious cabin, potential for light off road exploits and the theoretical frugality of its mild hybrid Boosterjet engine. The prominent 'Hybrid' badging here might lead you to expect more efficiency benefits than are actually delivered, its effect on everyday running costs, though welcome, somewhat marginal. But every little helps and the 48-volt tech is certainly useful in the way it better assists with pulling power and allows for fully electrified progress below 10mph. Whether this and the visual update are together enough to make customers interested in the S-Cross who weren't before is more debateable. But it all gives this car extra selling points - and that's never a bad thing.

  • Engine auto start/stop system
  • 2 Tweeters
  • 4 speakers
  • DAB Digital radio
  • Steering wheel mounted audio controls
  • USB connection
  • Aluminium roof rails
  • Body colour door handles
  • Chrome effect window sills
  • Chrome front grille
  • Front/rear and under body trim - silver
  • Rear side wing doors
  • Side louver bezels in silver
  • Visible VIN plate
  • Wheel arch extensions
  • 12V accessory socket in centre lower box
  • 12V accessory socket in luggage area
  • 2x Front and rear door bottle holders
  • 3 spoke leather covered steering wheel
  • 4x cup holders (x2 front, x2 rear)
  • Centre console storage
  • Centre lower box
  • Chrome interior door handles
  • Driver's side foot rest
  • Fabric upholstery
  • Front centre armrest
  • Front fabric door trim insert
  • Luggage area cover
  • Luggage area shopping bag hook, net hook x 2
  • Passenger's side assist grips
  • Rear assist grips x2
  • Rear centre armrest
  • Removable double luggage room floor
  • Shift knob piano black with chrome accent
  • Telescopic steering wheel adjustment
  • Tilt adjustable steering wheel
  • 3 Point ELR rear seat belts x3
  • Childproof rear door locks
  • Curtain airbags
  • Driver and passenger airbags
  • Drivers knee airbag
  • Front 3 point ELR seatbelts with pretensioner and force limiter
  • Front and rear seatbelt reminder
  • Front passenger airbag deactivation
  • Height adjustable front seatbelts
  • Side airbags
  • Side impact protection beams
  • Tyre pressure monitoring system
  • Deadlocks
  • Freewheeling key cylinders
  • Immobiliser
  • Keyless entry and start
  • Light - on and Key in reminder
  • Locking wheel nuts
  • Remote central door locking
  • Security alarm
  • HC+NOx: N
  • Particles: N
  • Standard Euro Emissions: EURO 6
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb: 120
  • Camshaft: DOHC
  • Catalytic Convertor: True
  • CC: 1373
  • Compression Ratio: 9.9:1
  • Cylinder Layout: IN-LINE
  • Cylinders: 4
  • Cylinders - Bore (mm): 73
  • Cylinders - Stroke (mm): 82
  • Engine Code: K14D
  • Engine Layout: FRONT TRANSVERSE
  • Fuel Delivery: TURBO DIRECT INJECTION
  • Gears: 6 SPEED
  • Number of Valves: 16
  • Transmission: MANUAL
  • EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies: False
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb: 5.3
  • WLTP - MPG - Comb: 53.2
  • Alternative Fuel Qualifying: True
  • Badge Engine CC: 1.4
  • Badge Power: 129
  • Based On ID: N
  • Coin Description: Boosterjet 48V Hybrid
  • Coin Series: Motion
  • Generation Mark: 3
  • Man Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years: 12
  • Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years: N
  • NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %: N
  • NCAP Child Occupant Protection %: N
  • NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09: N
  • NCAP Pedestrian Protection %: N
  • NCAP Safety Assist %: N
  • Safety Concerns: False
  • Special Edition: False
  • Special Order: False
  • Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage: 60000
  • Standard manufacturers warranty - Years: 3
  • Timing Belt Interval Frequency - Months: N
  • Timing Belt Interval Mileage: N
  • Vehicle Homologation Class: M1
  • Engine Power - BHP: 129
  • Engine Power - KW: 95
  • Engine Power - PS: True
  • Engine Power - RPM: 5500
  • Engine Torque - LBS.FT: 173
  • Engine Torque - MKG: 24
  • Engine Torque - NM: 235
  • Engine Torque - RPM: 2000
  • Top Speed: 121
  • Emissions Test Cycle: WLTP
  • RDE Certification Level: RDE 2
  • Alloys: True
  • Space Saver: False
  • Tyre Size Front: 215/55 R17
  • Tyre Size Rear: 215/55 R17
  • Tyre Size Spare: TYRE REPAIR KIT
  • Wheel Style: N
  • Wheel Type: 17" ALLOY
  • Height: N
  • Height (including roof rails): 1593
  • Length: 4300
  • Wheelbase: 2600
  • Width: 1785
  • Width (including mirrors): N
  • Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres): 47
  • Gross Vehicle Weight: 1685
  • Luggage Capacity (Seats Up): 440
  • Max. Loading Weight: 450
  • Max. Roof Load: 75
  • Max. Towing Weight - Braked: 1500
  • Max. Towing Weight - Unbraked: 600
  • Minimum Kerbweight: 1235
  • No. of Seats: 5
  • Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb: 10.8