If you want a car that’s great on gas, has torque down low, and is oft compared to an Audi A4 and BMW 3-series with the way it handles, you really can’t beat a used Suzuki Kizashi.
Are you looking for a fun and affordable second car and want something that no one else probably owns then you need a Suzuki Kizashi in your life. These past couple of days I’ve come across numerous Suzuki Kizashis on Autotrader and Craigslist, to name a few, and there are a handful of Suzuki Kizashis available for cheap. I’m talking between $6,000-$10,000 cheap which, for a reliable Japanese sedan, is unheard of in the used market these days. On top of that, most of them have under 100,000 miles on them, so barely broken in.
I think a lot of people are hesitant on pulling the trigger on one of these Kizashis because Suzuki is no longer around and you think parts aren’t available which is only partly true, but I’m here to tell you to let loose your inhibitions and Buy. That. Kizashi.
First of all, there’s the reliability record of these Kizashis. As per many owners I’ve come across online, these Kizashis are essentially bulletproof. When Car and Driver (ever heard of them?) had a long-term Kizashi, their total repair bill after 40,000 miles was just $587. All was routine maintenance aka nothing major happened.
The internet is chock full of Kizashi owners well past 100,000 miles with nary an issue from the 2.4L engine and the CVT or 6-speed it’s attached to.
So, where does this apprehension for Suzukis in America come from? Most of the bad Suzukis stemmed from the horrible partnership they had with GM/Daewoo. The Suzuki Reno, Verona, and Forenza, you want to stay away from those. Suzuki made Suzukis like the SX4 and Kizashis are absolute gems.
As per YourMechanic, according to Kizashi owners, the most common services are CV Axles/shaft replacements, brake caliper replacements, crankshaft position sensors going bad, and several other common issues with wear and tear on cars. You might think that availability of parts might be a problem but thanks to sites like RockAuto.com, brake calipers, struts, axles and the like are just a click away. Aftermarket parts makers are STILL making parts for these cars. A timing chain means one less job to worry about in regards to belts.
The tale of the tape under the hood is plenty good reason to pull the trigger on one of these. The J24B NA four-cylinder puts out a generous 185 HP (five less in the CVT) at 6,500 RPM and 170 lb-ft at a low 4,000 RPM. In FWD or AWD trim, that’s more than enough power to scoot around traffic.
Up front and out back, there’s nothing on the road that looks this good for that amount of money, it’s very premium looking.
If you’re still on the fence on the Kizashi, check out some videos on this Japanese gem and just how well it handles below.