I've hired a few of these over the last couple of years. The first was an auto, and was quite nice. The rest have been manuals, which have been amongst the worst manuals I've ever driven. At first I thought it was just the one car that had something wrong with it, until I found the next couple were the same. No matter how smoothly I tried to change gears, the shift was rough and clunky. I thought the manual Hyundai Getz was pretty average, but I find they shift better than the Swift's. But in all fairness, I drive a 6sp Focus TDCi, which has one of the best manual gearboxes I've ever driven, so that's what I'm used to I guess.
Other than the manual gearboxes, I found the Swifts nice to drive, and didn't notice any rattles in them either.
I hired one about 3 years ago when my Audi broke down. We did about 500km in the thing and I hated it within ten minutes. Granted it was probably a base model, but here's a list of reasons not to get one:
- The auto is vague and annoyingly unpredictable.
- The steering was high geared yet lacking in feedback; a potentially dangerous combination.
- The suspension is rock hard and jolting.
- The accelerator is more like an on/off switch, it was impossible to drive smoothly in traffic.
- Likewise the brakes, just a touch would hurl you forward in your seat.
- The turning circle was appalling for such a small car; my A6 was better!
- The seats are uncomfortable.
- It ran out of puff way too early on the open road.
It's a shopping trolley, trying so hard to be a racing car that it forgets that real people will be driving it. I know many will think that what I see as faults are good points, but if you are considering one as a daily driver, then remember my words when you are taking one for a test drive!