Suzuki SX4 S-Cross 1.6 DDiS SZ4
Week ending July 25
Miles driven this week 47
After swapping the S-Cross with colleague Mark Pearson's long-term Nissan Qashqai last week, I was glad to see he had experienced similar issues to me with the SX4's fuel cap release lever.
Every time I take the car to the petrol station, I scrabble around for ages, grabbing at various bits of metal underneath the driver's seat before I finally locate it.
It took a while for me to remember to do this. Many a time, I've got out of the car, walked around to the side, ready to open the fuel cap, then had to go back, get back in the driver's seat and find the lever.
Luckily for me, the S-Cross is so fuel-efficient, my trips to the petrol station are few and far between.
Week ending July 17
Miles driven this week 103
Approached without my glasses on, Michele’s white SX4 S-Cross looks remarkably like my white Qashqai.
This is not wholly surprising – they're roughly similar in size, and aimed at roughly the same sort of car buyer. The Qashqai I’ve come to know and admire, but my experience of the SX4 S-Cross has been more limited, and, although the Suzuki is cheaper and comparisons might be odious, I can’t help but compare the two.
Hopping into the S-Cross straight after the Qashqai it feels more compact, although for most families it’s probably spacious enough. The dark and hard plastics do feel a little cheap, though, especially compared with those in the more considered interior of the Qashqai. I found the central armrest intrusive, too, and I would have liked more rearward adjustment in the driver’s seat – Michele’s husband is a lankier fellow than me, so I must ask her how he copes with it.
Move away though, and the differences between the two become clearer. The diesel engine in the Suzuki is a gruff unit, noticeably noisier than the 1.5-litre engine in my car. Added to that, there’s more bounce and bang in the ride. To drive, it’s straightforward, but totally unrewarding, with a slightly agricultural feel.
The S-Cross might be good value, but to be honest I can’t think why you’d choose it over one of the cheaper Qashqais. I’m going to make sure I keep my glasses on when I approach our car park.
By Mark Pearson
Week ending July 9
Driven this week 38
Quiet moments are rare, especially driving around with two kids in tow. I've found one of the best times is sitting in the car wash – it seems to calm even the most chatty kids.
The noise and motion of the giant brushes doing their job soothes everyone to silence, albeit for only 10 minutes.
I'd been a bit sceptical of owning a white car at first, thinking it would show every speck of dust and water spot, but actually it's a bonus, because it gives us all a reason to pop to the car wash and grab a few minutes of peace and quiet.
Week ending July 2
Driven this week 42
I keep finding new things out about the SX4 S-Cross which I didn't know before, like the handy drink holders next to the gearstick.
Usually, it's just been a place to throw my keys or phone while driving, but this week I used it for what it was intended for: to hold a drink. My cappuccino fit perfectly in the slot and didn't wobble around at all, so there was no fear of spilling hot coffee.