2012 Suzuki Swish Review
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Suzuki Swish Review

Bike tested: 2012 Suzuki Swish

Price OTR Mumbai: Rs. 55,750/-

The scooter segment in India is seeing huge growth and more and more players are offering better products day by day. Honda recently refreshed the Dio, while Mahindra launched the upgraded Rodeo RZ. Hero launched the Maestro, while Yamaha is all set to launch the Ray in September. Suzuki has done very well in the scooter segment with the Access. The Japanese automaker has launched the Suzuki Swish, which uses the same 125cc powertrain as the Suzuki Access. Both the scooters are very similar in almost all aspects, except that the Suzuki Swish looks different and is slightly taller and 5 kgs lighter. So will the Swish repeat the Access success? Lets find out.

Styling – The aesthetics of the Suzuki Swish are that of a grown up scooter, which looks sporty, thanks to the edgy lines, slashes and cuts at the front and swooping panels on the sides. The graphics inherited by the Suzuki Swish also match the edgy design language. The headlight and the indicators also carry the same forte at the front and the rear. The exhaust matches the design language with a well-crafted edgy heat shield. The front mudguard is less bulbous. The massive tail light helps in supreme illumination. The motorcycle derived mudguard with a reflector is a thoughtful idea and adds to a safer journey at night. While the design of the alloy wheels is blunt, colour of the front forks could have been black which would have added a better touch to the sporty package.

Instrument Cluster and Switch Gear – The Instrument cluster is the annoying point of this scooter. The Suzuki Swish looks very boring and cheap with a blue background colour, which doesn’t help either. Speedometer fonts are borrowed from your grandpa’s diary and there is a simple fuel gauge. There is a solitary meter to show the side indicator light rather than one for the left and one for the right on each side. The exposed screws inside the instrument cluster are a sore point. Switch gear is like in any other scooter, with the same functionality and placement, nothing new.

Ergonomics – The Suzuki Swish has a very comfortable seating position, upright and not so wide, perfect for pottering around the city. The switch gear is very friendly and easy to operate for newbie riders as well. The seat is well cushioned; it provides a perfect balance, comfortable enough for short trips and helps in long journeys as well. The aluminium grab rail at the back for the pillion is a bit small in size. There is a clip on the left side of the brake lever to help you hold the rear brakes, which is a boon on the inclines. The foot at the front is well crafted for more knee room but it’s enough for normal sized people. Motorcycle derived rear view mirrors are very easy to adjust and offer very wide view of what is behind. The floor bed is not wide enough as other scooters but still is enough to place 3-4 decent sized shopping bags. Fit and finish is good.

Performance and Gearbox – Performance is the party piece of the Suzuki Swish. This is the scooter with the highest power and torque figures of all scooters (Vespa aside) with 9.8 Nm of torque coming at as low as 5000 RPM and power of 8.6 BHP coming at 7000 RPM from a 125cc engine. This is a very peppy scooter to ride. Throttle response, like all Suzuki 2-wheelers, is very crisp, which is a joy when riding enthusiastically. 0-60 km/h is dispatched in 9 seconds which is quite fast for an automatic scooter and it goes all the way goes to a whopping 95 km/h. Mid-range of the Suzuki Swish is machine gun quick for a scooter, 50 to 70 km/h is very quickly dealt with, which makes it a highway crusader as well. The gearbox shifts seamlessly and there is minimal CVT lag. Lag is present in the beginning though (around 10 and 20 km/hr) after which there is no uneasiness or vibrations in the throttle which makes it pull smoothly to its top speed and makes it effortless to drive.

Ride, Handling and Braking – The Suzuki Swish rides on a very basic and common set of 90 x 100 tires and 10-inch wheels. Ride quality is complaint and not plush as the Honda scooters, but both deal the same way when it comes to dealing with huge craters on our imperfect roads. Maneuvering in the city is a hassle free job, U-turn radius is short and it is very nimble and agile while cutting through traffic. Handling is better, thanks to the telescopic front suspension, swing arm type monoshock and the stressed engine (which makes it part of chassis). It’s near to the class leader, the TVS Wego.

There is slight twitchiness at the rear while taking sharp turns. Wider rubber is always welcome on any scooter since all of the scooters are fighting for fuel economy rather than cornering speeds and stability. On paper, 120 mm front and rear drum brakes seems inadequate when compared to others, (130 mm on most scooters) but on road they are surprisingly good enough to shed high speeds without any fuss. High-speed stability is excellent and there is very little wind blast on a windy highway.

Miscellaneous – Cost cutting is seen in several areas; the hook which is under the seat is made up of plastic rather than the metal seen on other scooters. Plastic quality all around is average. Bare minimum, when it comes to exciting features and nobody beats the Mahindra Rodeo in this part. Rusted bits seen on our test scooter was shocking. Ground clearance may seem less on paper but with stiff suspension, even with a pillion you won’t scrape your under-belly. Under seat storage is average and not class leading like the Mahindra Rodeo but you can fit a full faced helmet due to clever packaging which consists of a shallow boot and space squeezed below the one piece seat. To open the lock of the under-seat storage, you need to keep the key in the ignition slot and turn it all the way to left and then push it to hear a ‘click’ which opens the lock.

Conclusion – Suzuki has got it right with the Swish, the subtle changes in looks and the performance (lesser weight) are the only real difference when compared to the Access. The Swish (like the Access) is an all-rounder; you can use it for daily chores and enjoy the performance as well. But with no features on offer like that of the competitors, at almost same amount of money, it’s a tough decision. If you are an enthusiast and you want to have some fun with your scooter as well, look no further. But if you want something else, the scooter market is flooded with products that can suit your needs.

Whats Cool

* Peppy performance
* 20-litre under seat storage

Whats Not So Cool

* Glove box optional
* Cost cutting

Suzuki Swish Specifications

* Engine: 124cc, single-cylinder, 4-stroke, OHC
* Power: 8.58 BHP @ 8000 RPM
* Torque: 9.8 Nm @ 5000 RPM
* Transmission: CVT
* Top Speed: 95 km/h
* 0-60 km/h: 9 seconds
* Fuel Consumption: 40-45 km/l
* Fuel Type: Petrol
* Suspension: Telescopic, Coil Spring (Front), Swing Arm Type, Coil Spring (Rear)
* Tires: 90/100/10
* Brakes: 120 mm Drum (Front), 120 mm Drum (Rear)

Suzuki Swish Dimensions

* Overall length x width x height: 1780 mm x 650 mm x 1140 mm
* Wheelbase: 1250 mm
* Ground clearance: 160 mm
* Seat Height: 780 mm
* Underseat Storage Volume: 20-liters
* Fuel Tank Capacity: 6-liters
* Kerb Weight: 110 kgs