I’m unsure of this car. I can’t really put my finger on why, but I just am. One moment I like it but when my insecurities get the better of me, I get uncertain about its appeal. Like the legendary Kanye West once said, “we’re all self conscious” and he’s right. As a young twenty-something-year-old, we’re very conscious of what people think of us. Things like what we wear, what we drive and even who we’re with all count. So when the logical part of me assesses the Suzuki Baleno versus the illogical side of me, I draw differing concusions.
On paper the Baleno makes a great deal of sense. First of all it’s lighter than a Suzuki Swift which means it performs better. As a matter of fact the 1.4 litre in the Baleno feels much peppier than the 1.4 in the Swift, that’s what happens when a car weighs under a ton. The overall driving experience of the car is a positive one, the car maintains that “better than normal” Suzuki quality and it handles really well for an average hatchback. The amount of space offered in the Baleno also makes it a car suited for a young person transitioning to a life cycle that requires prams and what-not. For instance the size of the boot is good; deep enough to swallow the endless amounts of bags I carry around, including my 2.2 litre water bottle I keep on me for sipping post gym. I’m not really one for tracking litres/100km figures, but what I can say is that you have to try very hard to make it use fuel.
The not so logical me:
This is where things get complicated. The heart is a powerful tool and can account for the majority of our buying decisions. As a member of the youth, cool cars are the cars you want to own. Is the Baleno a cool car? Not really. See the Swift is the coolest Suzuki ever made so you keep comparing the Baleno to that. Aesthetically the front end is great but it’s that rear that makes me second guess its design, specifically that chrome rear spoiler thing. The question I ask myself as will many youngsters is this, “is the Baleno worth my R199 000?” To answer that question ask yourself, when somebody asks you what car you drive, does Suzuki Baleno sound right? Most of the young people this car is aimed at will give you many different answers, but I doubt the Baleno will be amongst the top. It sucks to be saying this but it’s a reality. I’m all for the good guy and the Baleno is just that, but you know what they say about the good guy…
Price: R229 900
1373cc, 4-cyl petrol, front-wheel drive
5.1l/100km, 120g/km CO2
0-100kph in 10.9 sec, 175km/h