2005 Suzuki Aerio SX Premium from North America - Comments

8th Jan 2007, 02:52

The SX4 diesel engine is not the 1248cc multijet as fitted to my Swift, it is the 1.9 DDiS, which the dealers believe may be sourced from Renualt. Stupidly, the SX4 is only available in 2wd in diesel, not 4wd as in the Sedici. Crazy.

In the UK we still have to endure the archaic right hand drive system, which prevents us getting some diesel models as in Europe-eg the Jimny diesel, Wagon R+ diesel etc.

We can only get the Fiat Panda 4x4 in 1.2 petrol, not in the excellent multijet diesel too.

I have owned various recent Suzukis and can categorically state the the Japanese built cars are LEAGUES ahead in build quality over the Hungarian built cars. Japanese built models match current Hondas for total quality, Hungarian built cars are quite similar in finish to 1990s Vauxhalls.

I've owned an Ignis 4grip (Hun), Jimny (Japanese) and Swift (Hun), and my family runs Wagon R+s (Hun).

Geoff.

22nd Jan 2007, 13:32

I have just reached 32,000 miles on my 2005 Aerio SX and so far, not a screw has come loose. I think I will be able to drive this car up to 15 years of age, which means that I will have it for $1000/year -- an excellent price for driving a new car.

11th Feb 2007, 10:36

We have two 2005 Aerio SX AWD vehicles, and as much as we love the way they handle, etc., we are having a big problem with tires. Suzuki has replaced the tires on mine twice, and we're about to go through it all again, in under 30,000 kms. My husband uses his less, and has had his replaced once. Anyone else aware of this problem? We'd like to have it taken care of before the warranty runs out, and have been inconvenienced several times with this ongoing problem. We've been told it's an alignment problem, that the viscous coupling needed to be replaced, and that the specs for alignment had been incorrect. With a 3 hr drive to the nearest dealer... help, with any info!

15th Feb 2007, 13:46

The factory tires are crap, and you shouldn't go to the dealer to have tire/wheel work, anyway.

I replaced the wheels with 17x7 BlackRacer rims and my tires are now Toyo Proxy4. Go to a decent tire shop and have them install some Toyo all weather tires. This will cost you money because premium tires are not covered by any warranty and good tires are never cheap.

10th Apr 2007, 05:58

Aerio, a great car. I always was a Honda lover, but once I tried the Suzuki I am not sure if I'll ever approach a Honda again. I have two Aerios one of 2003 with 116000 miles and never had a problem or a bulb changed, and an AWD 2006 with 4000 miles which is a great ride and very fast. So if you are considering to buy a new car try Aerio or the suv XL7 of 2007

3.6 engine with 252Hp. Good luck!

10th Apr 2007, 08:29

<<So if you are considering to buy a new car try Aerio or the suv XL7 of 2007>>

Aerios are no longer available in America and have been replaced with the SX4.

6th Jun 2007, 23:49

You can still get the 2007 in the sedan model just not the hatch back, but I do think they will be getting rid of the Aerio this year.

15th Oct 2007, 13:25

To the guy with the alignment problem, on other forums I have seen many comments. The problem is real. Apparently, the problem is largely in the rear, and there are add-on alignment tabs available to allow better adjustment of the rear alignment. Once the rear end alignment is taken care of and decent tires are put on the vehicle, you should not have further problems.

10th Jan 2011, 21:01

So this is an update to my original posting back in 2007 about my 2006 Suzuki Aerio SX Premium with a 5-Speed manual transmission.

Several months ago, I ended up trading in the Aerio SX for a 2008 SX4 with All Wheel Drive.

I will focus this update however on the Aerio SX.

I owned the Aerio for 5 years, and as originally stated, I pay $13,700 for the Aerio SX brand new with all of the rebates and incentives added in.

The car performed flawlessly for me during those 5 years, and during that time, whenever I would have people in the car, they would always comment on how nice the interior was, and even a Honda Fit owner remarked about how the Aerio SX interior was more upscale and refined looking that his Honda Fit.

I did have 2 warranty services performed on the Aerio. One was for a stick shift retention clip. I didn't have any problems with it, but the dealer just did the performed the work while I was at the dealer having a 30,000 mile service done.

The price that dealership gave me for the 30,000 mile service was within $180 dollars of the best price I was able to get for having the work done elsewhere, and a well known Japanese Auto Service shop in town. There was no price gouging going on at the Suzuki dealer for service work, which was quite amazing. Again, that was a first for me, since all other ownership experiences with other brands such as Honda and Ford, ended up costing me much more to have work done at those brands Dealers. Not with Suzuki.

The other warranty service I had done was for a noisy water pump, it had a kind of occasional squeal to it. Brought it to the dealer, and they decided they would just swap it out with a new one under warranty. They volunteered to do the swap, I didn't have to request it or ask them to do it.

I must say, I've never experienced such outstanding dealer service as I have with my local Suzuki dealer.

If you go back and read my original posting on the purchase experience of my 2006 Aerio SX Premium, there was absolutely no nonsense to the deal, and everyone there was a complete professional. I got the car for several thousand dollars below the list price, and this was just by looking up all the incentives and rebates BEFORE I went into the dealership, so I was educated on what I could purchase the car for.

During the time I owned the vehicle, I did travel to a different part of the state, which meant I was dealing with a different dealership. It was this other Suzuki dealership that actually performed the second warranty work I needed done, which was the water pump swap out. But again, this dealership treated me like royalty. No questions asked, just outstanding service.

Onto the gas mileage. So over 5 years, my gas mileage stayed pretty consistent, with the exception being when I lived in Seattle. Seattle has horrible traffic congestion, which leads to a lot of stop and go, and long delays, during which you will spend an hour or two going anywhere between 5 to 15 miles per hour.

When I was living in Eastern Washington however, where the traffic is not so congested, my city MPG was a consistent 25 MPG, with my highway MPG being a consistent 35 MPG. My worst city MPG would be in the winter, with the winterized fuel and temperatures anywhere from 0 degrees to around 30 degrees. Those conditions netted me a about 22 MPG city.

My best highway MPG happened twice. Once in summer during a long trip, 600+ miles round-trip from Everett WA to Okanogan WA, resulted in 40.5 MPG! I was amazed to get over 400 miles to one tank of gas. It was summer, so better gasoline, and of course I always kept the Aerio waxed (less wind resistance).

Best MPG was also a long trip, from Kennewick WA to Seattle WA, which was part of my move back to Seattle. During that trip over the mountains, which was late September, I got 41.5 MPG, with very worn original tires and a car load of stuff. That was the last trip I was able to make on those tires, having swapped them out at Les Schwab for some in-house brand they swore was the best deal LOL. They were decent tires, but weak sidewalls; had two of those tires eventually replaced, because of bulges appearing in the sidewalls after driving over potholes, which ABOUND in Seattle.

After 5 years of outstanding ownership experience with my 2006 Aerio SX, I had that itch for a new (or newer) car.

Once again, as with the Aerio, I did tons of research and pricing BEFORE I went to buy another car.

Since my experience with Suzuki had been so positive over the years, and after doing quite a bit of comparison shopping I decided on a newer Suzuki, in this case the SX4.

At the same time, I wanted to switch things up a bit, so I went with ALL Wheel Drive this time.

I found just the car I was interested in, but at a used car lot rather than at a Suzuki dealer.

I ended up trading my 2006 Suzuki Aerio Premium 5-Speed with 43,000 miles on it, for a 2008 Suzuki SX4 AWD 5-Speed manual, with 24,000 miles on it.

So how much did I get for my 2006 Suzuki Aerio after 5 years of ownership? They gave me $6900 for it.

That breaks down to approximately 50% resale value after 5 years! But again, this was due to the fact that I did my homework BEFORE I purchased the Aerio, and also when I went to sell it.

I could have actually gotten even more than that for the Aerio though, since I had offered to sell the Aerio to an acquaintance of mine for $7200, which he was more than happy with. The reason I didn't do that, is because the deal I had arranged for the 2008 SX4 was based on already having negotiated in the deal with the Aerio, and the price the used car dealer was was going to sell me the 2008 SX4 for was below its book value, which for me was a win/win.

In addition to the below book value on the SX4, the previous owner of the SX4 had spent roughly $3500 on add-on's for that car. It had some gorgeous 17" aftermarket wheels, not gaudy looking ones either, but ones that perfectly matched the look of the car. It also had brand new tires, a brand new "low profile" performance exhaust, and a bunch of EXPENSIVE genuine Suzuki Sport visual enhancements. So because of all of that, I jumped at the deal, even though I could have gotten even a better price for my Aerio than the $6900 that I accepted for trade-in on the SX4.

So why did I buy a used SX4 instead of just going back to the original dealership that sold me the Aerio and trading it in on a new SX4?

I probably would have done just that, except for a couple important reasons.

I'm addicted to stick shift manual transmissions. But I also like amenities, and I got so used to the "PREMIUM" features of the Aerio, such as the steering while audio controls and cruise control, as well as the automatic climate control. Not only does the auto-air add more ease of use, but it also has nicer looking dials than the manually controlled version.

Well after 2008, the SX4 AWD no longer had the option of a manual transmission, but that included full automatic climate control as well as audio and cruise control on the steering wheel.

The manual transmission version AWD was only available in a base version. Many manufacturers at the same time went that same route. Major bummer for people like me that will only buy a stick shift, but want the extra amenities!

So that left me with my next logical option, which was to find a low miles 2008 version of the SX4 AWD.

If I would have been able to purchase a new SX4 AWD equipped the way I wanted it, I probably would have done that, but that just wasn't an option. The last 2 Suzuki's I traded (Swift GT & Aerio SX) in have both given me excellent resale value (regardless of suggested "book value"), so I know first hand that Suzuki resale values are right up there with the best of the pack, not to mention my experiences with their reliability and the service I've received.

Some final thoughts and perhaps useful information to anyone researching the Aerio or SX4.

Now that I've owned a 2008 SX4 AWD for several months, how does it compare with my Aerio?

Well there are a lot of differences.

Aerio ride - more sedan like, very cushy, alarming amount of body roll when taking corners. Great acceleration! (manual version FWD version). Aerio's have very low body kits. It seems that most used Aerio's for sale are missing part of the front lower spoiler, a victim of steep driveways or road debris.

SX4 ride - shorter wheel base means not as cushy over bumps/potholes, but much sportier feeling. SX4 stick shift is also tighter and sportier than the Aerio's.

Biggest ride advantage of the SX4? The ride height!

In an SX4 Crossover, you don't have to worry about curb angles or parking lot cement dividers. The SX4 is high off the ground.

Aerio MPG's - I consistently got better MPG's than the Aerio is rated for, sometimes MUCH better. I did use synthetic oil though. (The exception would be Seattle commuting, in which my MPG's dropped, not just because of all the congestion here, but also because you have to drive aggressively in Seattle if you want to get anywhere. It's very frustrating #@$#*).

SX4 MPG's - So far seem to be slightly less than what I was getting in the Aerio, however the Aerio was Front Wheel Drive, whereas my SX4 is All Wheel Drive, so that is to be expected. I can't yet speak for highway MPG's in the SX4, since I haven't done much highway driving in it.

Biggest fuel disadvantage in the SX4?

The smaller gas tank (10.5 gallons) as compared to the Aerio (13.2 gallons) requires more stops at the gas pump.

Aerio Interior - This is where the Aerio rules over the SX4. The Aerio has more upscale sculpted interior, beautiful soft-touch dash arrangement (in the 2005 thru 2007 models), as well as tons of room and storage spaces. Plenty of hidden compartments upfront and "coin nooks".

SX4 Interior - SX4 went with the "clean look", which ends up being a bit spartan, although the overall fit and finish is still quite nice. SX4 can't hold a candle to the Aerio in cargo room however. Also there is very little extra storage compartments upfront as compared to the Aerio.

If you do a lot of long distance driving or need a lot of cargo capacity such as 4 people in the car, plus plenty of cargo room in the rear hatch, then the Aerio definitely has the advantage.

Since my moving back and forth and extensive traveling days are over, I found the SX4 to be more than sufficient for my current needs in the cargo and storage area.

Exterior Aerio - As someone else pointed out, the Aerio wasn't styled for the American or "Western" Market. The Aerio was a true Japanese styled and designed car; tall & skinny, lots of room, perfect for Japanese roads. In the U.S. that gives it a type of Japanese tuner look. Many times people mistook my Aerio for a "Honda with some type of funky body kit" on it LOL.

SX4 Exterior - The SX4 was styled for the Euro market, thus blends in quite well on European roads. Even in the U.S., it fits in much better with current car styling, which isn't as specific as the Aerio. The SX4 offers more variety of body styles than the Aerio did, with choices such as standard, sport, sportback, and crossover. The closest to the Aerio of those versions would be the SX4 Sportback, but even that version is more VW-like than the Japanese tall skinny wagon'ish Aerio.

Final thoughts after having owned a 2006 Suzuki Aerio SX Premium FWD, for 5 years?

The Suzuki Aerio was a tremendous bargain, specially when you would compare the equipment levels of the Aerio with other brands, the Aerio was just more car for less money.

The versions of equivalent Honda's for example were missing many of the standard equipment of the Aerio. Yes, you could add those features to the Honda (or other brands), but then you would end up several thousand dollars higher in price than the Suzuki. Then you would have to add in the Honda (or other brands) dealer fees.

The experiences I've had with Suzuki dealers have been outstanding, and unlike Honda dealers and many other brands, the Suzuki dealers don't change dealer fees, such as in the case with Honda can run near $1000 or more. You have to add these things to the price of cars if you are to do a realistic comparison.

On top of that, Suzuki has great rebate and incentive offers, which further pushes down the final price you will pay for their cars. Add up the long list of equipment that Suzuki cars come standard with (which other brands will charge you for), and then the fact that there are no outrageous dealer fees and yeah, Suzuki offers outstanding value.

Reliability of my Aerio was outstanding, just as I experienced with 10 years ownership of a Swift GT. Suzuki doesn't spend the billions that other car companies spend on advertising (perhaps to its own detriment), thus Suzuki cars will always be the unsung hero.

If you decide to purchase an Aerio, or any other GENUINE Suzuki car (not the horrid GM Daewoo re-badges that GM forced Suzuki to sell with a Suzuki badge on it for several years) do it because it is a great buy and smart choice, and not because of what people will think, because most likely you will get a lot of misinformed-informed comments on your choice based on peoples misinformed-informed perception of the Suzuki brand as a whole.

Whether you are looking for a lot of car for the buck, or the type of person that just likes to have a car that is unique and not a cookie cutter, the Aerio will fulfill both of those needs very well!

Remember that every brand, without exception, will have a few lemons in the pack, just browse the Internet with any car model of any brand, and you will see that is true. Overall though, genuine Suzuki cars such as the Aerio will hold up extremely well.

After having experienced Aerio ownership for 5 years, and had the "Suzuki Experience", would I now in retrospect make that decision all over again? ABSOLUTELY!

13th Jan 2011, 18:47

I have a 2006 SX AWD, and the best mpg I have gotten has been 28 mpg. That is without the AC on and highway speed. Most of the time I only get 22 to 24 mpg. Very poor. I do not race this car, as I am much older, and those days have passed.

Not happy with the dealer and warranty problems. Had to pay for what should have been covered every time (tires at 7,000 miles and rusted out muffler at 30,000 miles). I have stopped going to the dealer.

27th Oct 2012, 02:03

I feel the Aerio is completely superior to the Fit. Having owned both, that's the way it is.

11th Oct 2013, 22:49

I don't worry about resale value, as I tend to keep my cars for a long time.

I live in New Zealand and I had a Triumph 2.5TC for 18 years, then gave it to my daughter - it was better than the old Japanese rust bucket she had.

My present car, a Holden Commodore, is 22 years old, and I am thinking about buying a wagon. Had a wagon about 50 years ago, for few years.

Down here we do keep our vehicles longer than in America, probably because we are not so rich as you lot.

Yes, I have been around for a long time.

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