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Suzuki Reviews

Suzuki was formed in June 1954, and introduced its first car – the 360cc Suzulight – in 1955. Its first car was shaped after minutely studying the microcar opposition from Europe, and building something better. It proved a hit in Japan, and was soon joined by van and pick-up versions. In 1959, it was joined by the Suzulight TL, a car styled eerily similar to the Mini.

The company concentrated on kei-class (miniature) cars well into the 1980s, producing the Fronte, Cervo and Alto – but it was the arrival of the scaled-down off-roader, the LJ80, that really opened up Suzuki to significant export success. Since then, it's grown into one of the world's leading manufacturers of smaller cars and lightweight off-roaders.

Good: Good fun, a lot of laughs, cheap to fuel, a latter-day Hillman Imp Sport
Bad: They rust appallingly
Good: Tiny, frugal, easy to park and exceptionally economical, three-cylinder engine is a cracker
Bad: Not a survivor, with many cars disposed of for no good reason
Good: Cheap, unpretentious 4x4. Its light weight makes it useful in snowy winters. Capable off-road.
Bad: Extremely crude road manners and surprisingly thirsty. Rust and cracked cylinder heads.
Good: Easy to drive. Very cheap now. GTi is quick and was rated one of the best small hot hatches in its day.
Bad: They're all old cars now. Cracked cylinder heads on 8-valve 1.3s and 1.6s.
Good: Cute-looking roadster with an eager, high-revving turbocharged engine.
Bad: Not all engines last the distance and rear brake calipers are susceptible to leaking.

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