2001 Suzuki Esteem GLX 1.6 EFI from Ecuador
A reliable, inexpensive and fun vehicle to drive in the city and at times out of it.
Very recently and in my opinion way prematurely the clutch disc went out. Although the plate and bearing were replaced as well.
A small rattle coming from a loose engine cover underneath it.
Original tires felt like if they were made of solid plastic.
Normal oil changes every 5000 km and brakes changes/adjust every 30000 km.
This car has been mixed feelings, but overall has behaved very well. It is primarily driven in the city, this may explain why the clutch failed so early. Other than that this has been a great car. The acceleration is pretty peppy, the transmission feels good to shift and feels solid. The handling is well damped, but at times feels a bit too soft.
The strongest point of this vehicle is the fuel consumption. It is very very reduced. Although in the highway you will feel a lack of power and in order to get good engine response you have to drive at very high RPMs. The engine is quite noisy too, so it gets a little tiring to listen to the engine go loud (past 5000 RPMs) in long trips through twisty roads. The steering is very responsive and quick, making it fun to drive. Once at speed, the car gives you confidence to keep going fast, and the car handles very well even past the adherence limit (while compensating or "drifting"). The brakes can overheat quickly if you punish them too much and the car is loaded.
Other than those conditions that the car has, it is a very good transport. It is cheap to maintain, parts are inexpensive and doesn't uses gas. I would recommend this car for somebody looking for a basic ride that is reliable, fun to drive and won't break your bank.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 1st August, 2006