11th Dec 2006, 17:18

Shocked to hear the car was that bad. I've been considering either a Jimny or Ignis, but will definately avoid the latter.

13th Dec 2006, 02:40

This was my report- I seem to have gone through the entire range of Suzuki in 2 years! I swapped my excellent Citroen Berlingo for the Ignis as I kept getting stuck on rural tracks, but regretted it as the car was just so flawed.

I borrowed a new Jimny when the Ignis was in having the annoying bits investigated (eg fuel economy), and thought it might be a better alternative, so I swapped it and then discovered that the four wheel drive can only be used off-road, and that it was only rear wheel drive on the road.

I then rolled it at 25mph after oversteering out of a wet island and clipping the kerb, and wrote it off.

When the insurance paid out, I went back to the excellent local dealers and bought a Swift DDiS, which is far superior to the previous cars, now the rattles have been fixed, but I have to avoid poor tracks etc.

If you need serious off-road ability and will use the car only briefly on-road, the Jimny is a well built and useful tool. If you don't, walk away.

The Ignis is just plain hopeless as a road car and costs a fortune to run.

What do you need the car for?

Have you looked at the excelllent Fiat Panda 4x4?

It is only available in 1.2 petrol in the UK (0-60 in 20 seconds!!). In Europe, the excellent 1.3 multijet diesel (as fitted in my Swift DDiS), is available, and if this had been available in the UK, I would have bought one instead of the Ignis first time-and saved myself a fortune...


30th Apr 2009, 13:24

We've bought an Ignis 4grip. We thought that it would be economical because of the engine size (1.5), after just five days of using it, we've noticed that the consumption is not practical for the size of this car, very bad. We're sorting out to exchange with another car now, hope the garage will allow it.

1st May 2009, 14:10

We used to call our IgnisFourGrip "ItchyForeSkin" as it was about as pleasant...!!!

We were very glad to see the back of ours, but the new owner likes it.

One of the worst cars I have driven.

27th Feb 2011, 10:30

Maybe the previous reviewers are driving a different car to me. I have just bought a Suzuki Ignis 4Grip 2005 model, and am extremely pleased with it. It's a funky little 4x4 (not permanent like some suggested), which operates on viscous drive; same as my previous Honda CRV.

Great little car to drive, and really comes into its own in snow or muddy wet conditions, a hell of a lot of car for your money - mine cost £3,600 secondhand with 35,000 miles on the clock.

I have checked the mpg, and I get 39 mpg on a run driving without any thought of economy. Around town I average 34mpg, but again, I drive without thought of economy. In fact the VVT gives it a rapid acceleration that tempts you to drive just a little more adventurously.

I wish I had known about this little gem earlier, as I would have bought one long ago.

No problems have come to light, but admittedly the short wheel base doesn't ride the bumps as well as the Honda, but then it's a lot more fun.

30th Jan 2014, 05:25

Update by the original reviewer:

After my poor experiences with a brand new Ignis 4grip as reported, by chance I purchased another two identical cars for resale since, both Ignis 1.5 4grip, both in Galactic Grey bizarrely too, one a 54 plate with 86,300 miles, the other an 05 plate with 86,900 miles (both sold in 24 hours).

Looking back on my original review, I stick with the comments about the the clacky stalks for wipers/indicators, daft instant MPG display, the hard ride and the poor economy, BUT I will say that they are 100 times better once they have done some mileage than when stiff and new, when they are not nice at all.

As a used purchase, they are pretty good really at £2000-3000 as they are genuinely useful in rural areas, have air-con (04 onwards) have decent grip and ground clearance, and can be pretty handy on slippery b-roads if in a rush, as they do grip extremely well indeed.

It is one car that seems to improve massively with age; the gear change improves, the clutch lightens, the hardness eases off slightly and the harsh controls soften off too.

So, to update, if you need a small 4x4 for rural use and don't mind the lower MPG, £200pa tax and slightly heavier controls than a standard hatchback, it is a genuinely useful little thing with 5 seats, decent boot, air-con, chain driven (no cambelt) engine, strong long term reliability and good durability.

Compared to the small 5 door 4x4 competition at this price level; a battered Panda 4x4 or an aged Daihatsu Terios, at £2000-3000 they are pretty good and do improve with use and mileage.

So don't worry too much about mileage as they are bomb-proof (apart from a common cheap fix ABS light, which is to do with a sensor ring - easily sorted by cleaning the ring or buying a new ring for £3 off eBay). It is better to just choose a London or city based car, which has not been worked hard off road all its life on a construction site, stables or farm. When buying both my recent ones in for stock, I viewed others which were very low mileage, but had been worked very hard and were sloppy to drive and battered underneath.

Cars are a learning curve and I hated my new Ignis. I've changed my mind after driving two run in models, and have been impressed by how well they last and how good they are for £2000-3000.

14th Feb 2014, 13:09

Original poster again, update to above post, to report on the condition/faults on 10 year old cars.

Sold both the above very quickly to happy customers, so purchased two more:

Red 53 4Grip GL plate with 84,500 miles, drives very well on the smaller steel wheels (165/70/14), looks very basic with no plastic body kit and no alloys or air-con, red paint very faded as is usual for Suzuki, but machine polished up OK, original radio replaced with aftermarket item so the only way to correct the clock is to disconnect the battery at midnight 00.00hrs and it's impossible to switch between MPG and l/km on the upper dash display as both items are controlled by the original radio (about £90 inc postage to replace off eBay). Driver's carpet worn and gearstick too; otherwise the car has worn exceptionally well and valeted up like new all round. Needed service items and some tyres, but nothing else, strut top mounts bit noisy but working OK. Basically, for a ten year old 85k 4x4, it's in fine fettle and has years of life left in it - engine and transmission almost silent, everything works 100% except for a faulty dash light saying there is no brake fluid; assumed to be the float sensor in the brake fluid reservoir - replacement on order costing £25 on eBay. Hope this resolves it.

04 plate Sapphire blue GLX VVT-S, 102,000 miles, this one has seen some action as it was owned by a farmer, then saw city parking action (!!), but after hours of dent pulling and a severe machine polish, it looks tidy, especially the alloys, which seem to last forever on these cars without peeling. Interior took a very deep clean and some heat gun action to de-pil/de-burr the seat edges, and now looks brand new again, which is a testament to the longevity of the materials used.

Rear wiper not working, traced to a broken brown wire in the rubber boot between the body and tailgate, new piece soldered in and works fine, rear washer inoperable, traced to broken pipe/jet, replaced with £2 new jet, works fine. Quite a few minor jobs were done; windscreen surround glued back in, broken back shelf mended, driver's door strap re-attached, exhaust mounts replaced, body plastics and trim realigned and reattached properly etc.

Slight rumbling from OSF area, but caliper and bearings all OK, transmission all OK, drives fine, slight whine from belt area, but alternator working 100% all tested OK.

Both cars have zero rust, zero seat or trim wear and have valeted up very well, which gives an idea of the build quality. Slight surface rust on the 04 floor by the suspension mounts, but very minor, all sills etc like new on all four cars bought - zero rust.

Common faults seem to be broken rear shelves, worn driver's carpets, worn leather gear sticks, noisy strut top mounts and erroneous warning lights on dash for brakes, but in fairness even 4Grips with high mileage and sketchy history seem to wear very well with quiet engines and transmissions, very good body condition and very hard-wearing interiors.

A car that I absolutely hated when new has now garnered my respect for lasting very well and having very few faults. Parts are cheap and easy to source too, making it a great used buy for the money, if you need 4 wheel drive occasionally.

In a sentence, they make much more sense at £2000-3000 than when new.