With its all-new Celerio, Suzuki has proven that even if you decide to go small, you can still have it all.
The world-authority on compact cars will deliver the first Suzuki Celerio models to customers this week, a mere three months after the model’s global launch. And with this new model, Suzuki is setting a new standard for safety, fuel efficiency and luxury in the compact car segment.
“As our most affordable model at the time of launch in 2015, the Celerio has welcomed an entire generation of new car buyers to Suzuki. It has also won us many awards, including the winner of Best Budget Car categories in competitions such as the Cars.co.za Consumer Awards and the CAR Magazine Top 12 Competition.
“That is why we pay so much attention to the design and specification of this model, to ensure that it perfectly exemplifies our ethos of efficiency, durability and value-for-money in a compact package,” says Brendon Carpenter, Brand Marketing Manager of Suzuki Auto South Africa.
3D Organic Design
The 2022 Suzuki Celerio is a brand-new model from the tar up and as such it features a newly fledged exterior and interior design, a new platform and a new DualJet engine.
Suzuki’s designers have replaced the bold and angular style of the previous Celerio with a new, more rounded and more deeply sculpted body.
The new Celerio has a deep oval grill with large S-emblem and chrome highlights that stretch beyond the grille to the teardrop headlamps. This brightwork also disguises the fit lines of the lower moulded bumper, which help to create a bold and unified look. The lower black and body colour bumper houses the fog lights (on the GL specification level).
From the side, the Celerio has a more accentuated hip line and at the rear, the droplet tail lamps and high-level third brake light round off the picture.
From the outside, the GL specification – the highest in this range – is distinguished from the GA specification by its 15” darkened alloy wheels (as opposed to 14” steel wheels with modern wheel covers) and body-coloured door handles and side mirrors.
Before moving to the cabin, where the Celerio truly shines, it is worth noting that the 2022 Celerio now rides on a new version of Suzuki’s renowned HEARTECT platform.
This platform does duty in modern Suzuki models such as the Swift and the upcoming new Baleno, and it is well-regarded for its high structural rigidity, innovative energy dispersion channels for greater impact protection and its low weight.
In the Celerio, this platform allowed Suzuki to move the wheels to the outermost corners for better road holding and to lower the starting weight of the Celerio to 805 kg. All this was done while improving body strength, ride and handling performance as well as crash-test safety.
Small car, big cabin
The Celerio truly shines once you climb inside.
The cabin features new, integrated front- and rear seats that optimise space, while remaining comfortable. Suzuki has also added a 60:40 split rear seat and reshaped the luggage bay with a flush fitting parcel shelf, luggage hooks and a deeper base (despite housing a full-sized spare) to increase loading space to 295 litres.
In the front, the dashboard has been redesigned for visibility, a sense of space, and to integrate the new 7” touchscreen infotainment system (standard on the GL specification level).
As this model traditionally spends most of its time in the city commute, Suzuki also redesigned the centre console to integrate all the main controls, including electric windows (GL), door locks (GL) and the standard air conditioning to be close at hand for both the driver and front passenger.
As mentioned, the Celerio GL is fitted with a new-generation version of its touch-screen infotainment system. This system is equipped with a USB port, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard. It also features a host of smart vehicle notifications, alerts and information, such as instantaneous and average fuel consumption, fuel range and information from its integrated rear parking sensors.
The GA model is also equipped with rear parking sensors, but the guidance is audio only. This model has, however, also been pre-equipped with a roof-mounted antenna, two speakers and integrated wiring for the easy fitment of a Suzuki audio system. All models have Bluetooth and audio controls on the steering wheel.
Staying inside the cabin – there are assistant grips for all passengers, cup and bottle holders in the centre console and in all doors and a 12V accessory socket. Power steering is also standard across the range.
In the GL model, Suzuki has splashed out with silver detailing on the centre and side air vent bezels, silver door handles, front and rear electric windows, remote controlled door locks and front- and rear mounted speakers connected to the infotainment system.
The GL models also have a digital tachometer in the electronic display that is fitted next to the large analogue speedometer.
Also new to the Celerio, and South Africa, is Suzuki’s innovative new DualJet engine technology.
As the name suggests, the engine (code-named K10C) offers multi-point fuel injection from two injectors per cylinder, which allowed Suzuki engineers to offer more efficient combustion and a higher compression ratio (11.5:1).
The engineers also added roller rocker type valve mechanisms, variable valve timing for the four valves per cylinder, exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) and oil cooling jets under each of the three pistons for greater thermal efficiency and a generally lower operating temperature.
While the main focus in the Celerio is on fuel efficiency, the efficient combustion and EGR system has lowered the emission rating to a mere 84 g/km, which is well below the emission tax threshold of 120 g/km set by the South African government.
Also new to the Celerio and this class of vehicle is the Engine Automatic Start Stop (EASS) system.
Together, all these new technologies combine to give the Celerio an average fuel consumption figure of 4.2 litres per 100 km (in the AMT version). This makes the Suzuki Celerio South Africa’s most fuel-efficient five-door petrol hatchback.
“The K10C engine is brand new to South Africa, and we cannot wait to show customers how far they can stretch their petrol budget in the new Celerio. The K-series of engines are however well-established in South Africa and across the world, where it is not only used in Suzuki, but supplied by us for use in many other Japanese vehicle brands and a number of European and American vehicles,” says Carpenter.
The incredible fuel efficiency of the 1 litre DualJet engine does not come at the expense of power delivery. In South Africa, this engine will deliver 49 kW at 5 500 rpm and 89 Nm at 3 500 rpm. This gives the Celerio 1.0 DualJet a theoretical output of 81 horsepower per tonne.
A quick review of the mechanical layout
In the new Celerio, the power from the new DualJet engine is delivered to the front wheels via a five-speed manual transmission or an automated manual transmission (AMT) with the same number of gears. The latter performs from inside the cabin like a normal automatic transmission (with the option of manual override).
The Celerio has electric power steering and with its rigid platform and shorted wheelbase of 2,435 metres, it has an impressive turning radius of only 4.7 metres.
The new model is fitted with a McPherson strut and coil spring front suspension and Torsion beam and coil spring rear suspension. Ground clearance is a solid 170 mm.
The front-mounted disk brakes are equipped with ABS brakes, electronic brakeforce distribution and emergency brake assistance.
AMT-equipped Celerio models also receive a Hill Hold Assistance (HHA) system as standard.
Safer than ever
As always, safety is non-negotiable in any and every Suzuki model.
The 2022 Suzuki Celerio is equipped with an electronic stability programme (ESP) as standard, a first in this segment, and it has two airbags across the range.
All Celerio models also have an ISOFIX restraint system for child seats as standard and the front seats have been lifted slightly for a more commanding driving position with better all-round visibility.
Peace of mind included
Lastly, the entire Suzuki Celerio range will be sold with Suzuki’s 5 year / 200 000 km mechanical warranty and a Roadside Assistance programme for the same period. A 6-year / unlimited anti-corrosion warranty is also included as standard.
All models also receive a 2- year / 30 000 km service plan as standard.