When this “Bag Lady” first laid eyes upon the 2010 Suzuki Kizashi, the first thought that came to mind was “compact and cute!” The four years it took to develop and produce the Kizashi were four years well spent. I’m encouraged. And this is unchartered territory for Suzuki as the Kizashi is their first mid-size sedan. The Kizashi has a distinct style and I was able to step in with the same ease in my Giuseppe Zanotti’s as I was in my Reebok sneakers. When most hear the name Suzuki, they immediately think motorcycles but Suzuki has dispelled the notion that motorcycles are all they are good for.
The Kizashi is attractive, particularly amongst the mid-size crowd which includes the Mazda 6, Toyota Camry and Chevrolet Malibu. And even in Platinum Metallic, the Kizashi catches the eye — not as bland as one might think. The Kizashi has been compared to the VW Jetta and Honda Civic and the pictures shown prior to actually seeing the Kizashi for myself didn’t do it justice.
The exterior has a nice grille and stylized headlamps and the interior has an appealing layout. A bit more luxurious than I expected and more upscale than the starting price of the All-Wheel Drive (AWD) model which lists at 22K would suggest. The power seats allow you the necessary control to set your required level of comfort while the smart-key remote entry, keeps you from having to dig to the bottom of that Mulberry Mitzy Hobo bag for keys to both enter and start the vehicle. The interior is intimate, everything is within reach and the steering wheel audio controls lessen the distraction when setting the mood and pumping tunes from the 7-speaker Rockford Fosgate audio system which includes an MP3 player USB Port. There are numerous compartments to ensure all essentials are contained, from the overhead sunglass holder to ensure those Balenciaga D-Frames are secure, to the armrest hide-away. As compact as the 2010 Suzuki Kizashi is, the roominess is not to be overlooked. There is ample leg room both front and back but most surprising is the spaciousness of the trunk which affords space as needed to hide evidence of damage done when returning from that “one too many” shopping spree. This “Bag Lady” certainly knows “one too many!”
Although the performance of the Kizashi AWD is not necessarily lacking, the need for speed can be met by what is the optional CVT which includes steering wheel paddle-shifters so you can switch back and forth from the convenience of an automatic to the control of a manual. The 185-horsepower AWD yields 22 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway.
Although standard options are fabulous, there are numerous add-ons such as heated mirrors and rear parking assist to choose from. The thing about the Kizashi is that as cute as it is, it’s not something that consumers will immediately take notice of unless they know it’s there and keeping consumers in the know rests heavily on the shoulders of Suzuki. The Kizashi breaks the norm of what folks know and expect from Suzuki so it will be interesting to see where they go from here.
Tune into Bag Ladies Reality Radio for “Whip It” and more, every Tuesday, 7:30pm EDST only on www.bagladiesradio.com