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2012 Suzuki Kizashi Overview
Entering its third model year, the Suzuki Kizashi has undergone no major changes, as the automaker has only refined the small sports sedan’s package lineup for 2012.
The 2012 Suzuki Kizashi is available in 6 trim levels: S, SE, SE Leather Edition, Sport GTS, Sport SLS and Sport SLS Navigation Editions, each of which can be configured with front-wheel drive (FWD) or intelligent all-wheel drive (AWD). The FWD S and Sport GTS trims come standard with a 6-speed manual transmission, while all other trims come from the factory with a performance-tuned continuously variable transmission (CVT).
All trims are configured with a 185-hp (180 hp when paired with the CVT) 2.4-liter DOHC 4-cylinder engine that delivers 170 lb-ft of torque. All trims run on regular gasoline, and the fuel mileage each achieves varies. For example, the S trim is estimated to get 21 mpg city/31 highway, the FWD Sports GTS trim gets 20/29 and all remaining trims are estimated at 23/30.
Starting with the S trims, all 2012 Suzuki Kizashis have as standard equipment dual-zone automatic climate control with rear passenger air vents, cloth seats, power windows with driver and passenger one-touch auto-up/down and safety reverse feature, power door locks with remote keyless entry with a panic function, power steering, a keyless entry and start system with push-button ignition, a tilt-and-telescopic adjustable steering wheel, front sport seats with bio-fit ergonomic design, manual driver's seat height adjustment, 60/40 lockable split-folding rear seats (with center pass-through), projector-beam headlights, rear window defroster, variable intermittent wipers and 16-inch steel wheels with full covers and Dunlop all-season tires.
Buyers selecting an SE trim receive cruise control, leather-appointed sport seats, a 10-way power driver's seat with driver's 3-position memory, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with illuminated switches and audio and cruise controls, leather-wrapped shift knob and parking-brake handle, 7-speaker AM/FM/CD audio system, USB audio input and 18-inch aluminum alloy wheels with Dunlop low-profile all-season tires as standard equipment.
Upgrading to the Sport GTS trim adds as factory-installed additions a sport-tuned suspension with reduced ride height, a leather-wrapped sport steering wheel with audio and cruise controls, silver accents and perforated grips, Rockford Fosgate 8-channel 425-watt 10-speaker AM/FM/CD audio system with subwoofer and digital sound processor, Bluetooth wireless music audio streaming, sport front bumper and grille fascia with an aero body kit, rear decklid spoiler, front fog driving lights with chrome surround and 18-inch sport lightweight aluminum alloy wheels with Dunlop low profile all-season tires.
Choosing the Sport SLS trims adds steering-wheel-mounted F1-style paddle shifters, a 1-touch power tilt-and-slide sunroof, heated outside mirrors, automatic rain-sensing windshield wipers, leather-appointed sport seats, heated front seats, 4-way power front passenger seat, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, automatic headlight control, HomeLink universal garage door opener, Bluetooth wireless mobile phone integration and rear sonar parking assist with visual display and audible warning.
The 2012 Suzuki Kizashi has numerous safety and security features as standard equipment. The Kizashi comes with 8 standard airbags (dual front supplemental airbags, front seat side-impact supplemental airbags, rear seat side-impact supplemental airbags and side curtain supplemental airbags), side-impact door beams, energy-absorbing trim on pillars and roof-side rails, tire pressure monitoring system, daytime running lights, 4-wheel Bosch disc brakes with Akebono components, antilock brake system with electronic brakeforce distribution and brake assist, electronic stability control with a traction control system, intelligent vehicle stability program and vehicle security system with engine immobilizer.
Current owners give the 2012 Suzuki Kizashi high marks for ride, handling and styling, both interior and exterior. Many comment that the Kizashi is fun to drive and can handle twists and turns as well as any similar-size cars. More owners are enamored with the CVT-equipped trims than manual-transmission vehicles, noting that the manual takes a long time to get up to speed when driving on the highway. Road noise is minimal, reviewers note, and the suspension has just enough spring to make your ride more enjoyable.
Professional and consumer reviewers alike are impressed with a number of aspects of the 2012 Suzuki Kizashi, especially when compared to similar vehicles like Mazda’s Mazda6 and Subaru's Legacy. The number of standard safety features rival that of bigger, more expensive sedans, the interior has a number of nice appointments, and its handling makes the Kizashi fun drive as well.
by Mark S. Baker
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