Image is nothing, car is everything





While it might be lacking in the image department, the Aerio sedan comes fully loaded with air conditioning, keyless entry, heated power mirrors, power windows and more.

Chances are you’ve got no idea what a 2007 Suzuki Aerio sedan is. For starters; yes, it’s a car. Yes, it’s built in Japan. And yes, it’s slightly smaller than a Toyota Corolla, but bigger than a Toyota Yaris sedan.

Now comes the shocker: it’s been on sale in Canada for five years.

So it’s a little lacking in the image department, but while other subcompact carmakers almost punish you with roll-up windows and phony alloy wheel covers, the Aerio comes pretty loaded. For $18,995 you get: air conditioning, keyless entry, AM/FM/CD/MP3/WMA player, cruise control, power windows, heated (!) power mirrors, outside temperature gauge, ABS, dual front and side airbags, and alloy wheels.

The Aerio is one of the best horsepower-per-dollar cars money will buy. Suzuki fitted a 2.3-litre 155-horsepower motor — the most powerful engine in the subcompact class. Fuel consumption is pegged at 9.4L/100km city, 7.0L/100km highway (30 and 40 mpg, respectively). Power-wise, there’s a good chance you can race that Yaris for the last parking spot … and win.

But like any sport bike, it’s slow in corners. Suzuki optimized the Aerio for great all-round visibility, high seating position, and ease of manoeuvrability. For keen drivers, the skinny tires and height of the vehicle can make long on-ramps or sharp accident avoidance manoeuvres spooky. Not dangerous — just spooky.

Unlike other subcompacts that look hilarious on the highway, slowly building up speed to pass other motorists, the Aerio has great passing prowess. The high seating position also plays well on the highway, aiding visibility and reducing fatigue (sitting more upright reduces fatigue — I swear!) However, being a tall slab-sided sedan, the Aerio can suffer more from strong crosswinds than other cars.

Factory coverage on the Aerio includes five years of free roadside assistance, a five year/100,000 km powertrain warranty, five year/ 100,000 km anti-perforation (rust) warranty, and three year/60,000 km new vehicle limited warranty.

2007 Suzuki Aerio sedan

Type: Sub-compact 5-pass. sedan FWD

Price: $18,995

Engine: 2.3-litre L4 DOHC

Horsepower: 155 @ 5400 rpm

Torque (lb-ft):152 @ 3000 rpm

Highlights: Horsepower, feature list as long as a mummy’s bandage, warranty, visibility.