As the relatively young compact carrier segment continues to heat up, Suzuki wants everyone to know that no one does “compact” like they do. And as the newest entry to the segment, their Suzuki Ertiga looks set to prove it.
Compared to Suzuki’s previous Ertiga, the new 2019 model carries a more muscular demeanor. Its flat nose and high hood contribute a lot to its seemingly wider stance, and its large foglamps and wide wraparound headlights give it more presence on the road. Besides the new face and attractive Volvo-esque tail lights at the rear, the rest of the Ertiga’s styling plays it rather safe. But as we’ll soon find out, the best bits of the new Suzuki Ertiga lie inside.
Loads of room
The Suzuki Ertiga immediately makes its intentions known once you open the doors and step inside. Things aren’t too shabby for the driver and passenger up front. The top-of-the-line GLX variant featured here comes with height-adjustable seats for the driver side, and is the only variant in the Ertiga line to have it. The GLX variant also gets some additional niceties up front, including a leather covered steering wheel with audio controls, an information display screen between the speedometer and tachometer, wooden trim across the dash, and a large 10-inch touchscreen infotainment system.
The beige interior combined with large greenhouse openings gives the Ertiga an impression of generous amounts of space. It’s not just all smoke and mirrors however, as the Ertiga genuinely provides ample amounts of legroom for both second and third row passengers. The second row seats both recline and slide, allowing owners the opportunity to find the right distance for occupants on both rows to be comfortable, even on long drives. The second row splits 60:40, while the third row seats split 50:50 and folds down flat. Even with the third row seats upright, there’s an impressive 153 liters of cargo space to play with, with a high enough clearance to fit tall cargo.
Fold the third row seats down, and the available space opens up to 550 liters. Fold the second and third row seats down, and you’ll get a cavernous 803 liters of available space, besting most of its rivals in the segment.
Suzuki’s decision to make the Ertiga’s passengers top priority becomes even more apparent once it gets going. The Ertiga does a great job of keeping its ride comfortable even through uneven or rough terrain, and does it all in relative silence as well. Its four-cylinder, 1.5-liter engine produces 103 hp and 138 Nm of torque and is mated to a standard four-speed automatic transmission. It’s ample enough to carry a full complement of passengers confidently through the highway or through more mountainous roads, and does an even better job at low speeds through start-stop city traffic.
Thankfully, the increase in displacement over the previous generation doesn’t have any drawbacks in fuel consumption, as the Ertiga returned an impressive 12 km/L on mixed highway and city conditions. We would’ve loved to see an all-disc setup for its brakes, though the drum brakes do an adequate job of stopping it easily, thanks to its relatively light curb weight of only 1,135 kilos.
As with all Suzuki products, the Ertiga GLX returns excellent value for money for its P978,000 price tag, with features like push-button start/stop, dual SRS airbags, ABS with EBD, rear parking sensors, a giant-sized infotainment system, and a rearview camera all coming in as standard. With its affordable price tag coupled with a great feature set, Suzuki’s excellent build quality, and its sheer propensity in ferrying seven passengers comfortably, the Ertiga makes perfect sense for anyone looking to add a dash of practicality to their garage.
Text and photos by Chris Van Hoven