Japanese Automakers Resume Limited Output

Monday March 21st, 2011 at 10:33 AM
Posted by: aquadog

Japanese Automakers Resume Limited OutputJapan is slowly taking steps to resume auto and parts production after the devastating earthquake and tsunami hit on March 11, with auto companies starting limited production throughout the week. Due to aftershocks, rolling blackouts and infrastructure problems, Japanese auto factories have remained idle costing Japanese automakers an estimated $150 million a day, according to Goldman Sachs.

The IHS Automotive Insight states that “lost production outside of Japan is so far about 10,000 vehicles, but that number will rise ‘exponentially’ as more parts suppliers are affected, reducing stockpiles of components for cars and trucks built overseas”. The U.S. is starting to feel the effect, as General Motors Co. will shut down production at its 900 employee pickup plant in Shreveport, La. next week, which relies on Japanese made transmissions.

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First Impressions: 2010 Suzuki SX4

Tuesday June 1st, 2010 at 12:66 PM
Posted by: mswig

Suzuki SX4 Crossover tuned by Road Race Motorsports
Review by contributing editor, Martin Swig

Many reviewers have been lukewarm toward the Suzuki SX4. I don’t understand that, and neither does my friend, Denise McCluggage of Autoweek. We each own one, love it, and rate the car VERY highly.

I bought an SX4 that had been heavily breathed-on by RoadRace Motorsports of Sante Fe Springs, CA. A Ronal wheel, plus tire and suspension package, and a turbo package make for a quick and stable trackday car that is still a tractable everyday street car. The carbon-fiber hood adds visual drama.

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Suzuki Gives Half of its Kizashi Marketing Budget to U.S. Dealers

Thursday February 18th, 2010 at 8:22 AM
Posted by: michael.leroy

2010 Suzuki Kizashi Suzuki hopes local dealers can help market new model

Suzuki, ever the underdog in the US market, cannot afford an all-out media blitz to promote the all-new 2010 Kizashi, but will instead funnel $30 million of this year’s marketing budget to US dealers. The funds that are given to the dealerships will be used to do local advertising and other promotional offers.

The small Japanese automaker hopes sales the Kizashi pulls them out of a sales slump. Sales dropped last year by 54 percent and this year sales are down another 44 percent. This is depressing news because the auto market is recovering while Suzuki is continuing to see sales decline.

Suzuki plans on spending the other half of its marketing budget on two national ads. One ad in particular will focus on the car’s affordable all-wheel-drive option. Perhaps the other ad will help teach tongue-tied Americans how to properly pronounce Kizashi.

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First Impressions: 2010 Suzuki Kizashi SLS, something good is coming

Tuesday January 12th, 2010 at 10:11 AM
Posted by: michael.leroy

2010 Suzuki Kizashi

By Michael Leroy


  • Great 6-speed manual transmission
  • Good looks inside and out
  • Excellent value and warranty
  • Standard USB audio port


  • Some hard plastics in parts, particularly covering the child seat hooks
  • Does not offer a V6, hybrid or turbo option engine
  • Could use more suspension fine tuning
  • Perhaps too Japanese of a name

Believe it or not, Suzuki has been in the American market for 25 years. Since 1985, the company offered a range of funky little cars and SUV’s that filled a niche, but were never mainstream. Cute compact cars like the SX4 and the Samurai did not appeal to everybody in the US market. Suzuki must have realized this and knew they had to produce a larger car with more mainstream appeal. The Suzuki Kizashi is not a hip little car, it’s an adult mid-sized sedan designed to compete with Toyota Camry, Ford Fusion and Honda Accord. For the price, the Kizashi may have them all beat.

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2010 Suzuki SX4 SportBack Review

Thursday September 17th, 2009 at 4:99 PM
Posted by: berrichondanny

2010 Suzuki SX4 Crossover
Review by Danny Chang
(Updated with a counterpoint view June 5, 2010)


  • Available with AWD
  • Passes agility tests better than a Border Collie
  • Gets you from point A to point B
  • Don’t have to look for the bus pass
  • Way better than a Yugo


  • Slightly more powerful than a lawnmower
  • Unimpressive styling even with new aero kit
  • Underwhelming MPG

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Superfly 2010 Suzuki SX4 SportBack

Tuesday September 1st, 2009 at 1:99 AM
Posted by: Derek

In 2008, Suzuki came out ready to brawl in the sport compact class with a four-door, sport-oriented sedan, the SX4 Sport. This pugsly fighter came rumbling onto the street scene with front-wheel drive instead of power robbing AWD, a sport-tuned suspension that rides lower than its more sedate siblings, 17 inch wheels, and an aero kit to give it a lower ride height. Suzuki even fitted a rear crossbrace in the sedan’s trunk for a 15 percent increase in structural rigidity over their corresponding hatchback model. The little sedan, with sporty aspirations, was outfitted with a 2.0L powerplant capable of producing 143 hp and 136 lb-ft of torque — all in an affordable package.

With the 2010 SX4 SportBack model, Suzuki wanted to spice up the hatchback version of the SX4 Crossover using a similar formula as the SX4 Sport sedan. The parasitic all-wheel drive system was replaced by more efficient front-wheel drive, a slightly larger and more powerful engine became standard, and an aero kit complemented with 17 inch wheels and tires developed by Dunlop specifically for the SX4 Sport completed the makeover. A peek inside this fancy crossover five-door reveals an all-new instrument cluster, aluminum-look trim accents (including the pedals), and integrated nav-system.

Drive-off video of the 2010 SX4 SportBack after the jump

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