Have you now got that Fatboy Slim song stuck in your head? I got this from a colleague, Ashley Olfield, who told young journo’s that this is where the name, Fronx, was derived from. It made me laugh out loud, and then curse him because I couldn’t stop singing it in my head. So now I have done the same to you. But let’s be
fronk frank, it is a terrible name. No one wants to say they drive a “Fronx.” Crisis, what a clumsy word. It is obviously not derived from that song, but actually from two terms. The first is “Frontier” which refers to both the way in which the vehicle crosses a frontier for Suzuki in this market segment and how its design crosses a frontier between SUV and coupé. The second term is “X”, pointing to the crossover nature of the Fronx. Look, there is nothing we can do about it now, it has been named. But this is where the moaning ends because it is an incredible car from Suzuki, as always, and it comes in at such a good price you will forgive it its name.
It is a stand out car. It looks gooooood. And I know I said I was going to stop moaning, but I have one last little moan left in me and it refers to the interior colour pallatte. Good grief. Black and…wait for it…burgundy! BURGUNDY. Why? It dates the interior so much, however, some people might find it inoffensive and that is good for them. I wish you were able to choose plain black, but you cannot. But let’s move on to the good stuff.
You can choose between two trim levels, GL and GLX. Both of which come with a load of standard features. There is even cruise control across the board. As well as all-round electric windows, automatic climate control with rear ventilation, central locking, electric power steering, dual rear-mounted USB charging points, a front-mounted 12V charging socket and a centre console box that doubles as both an armrest and storage compartment. The GLX adds keyless entry with push-button start, wireless charging, head-up display, dual vanity mirrors with illumination in the sun visors and additional lighting in the glove compartment and front footwells. It also has a nine-inch touchscreen infotainment system (the GL has seven-inches) with a 360-degree camera. I told you it was specced up!
The boot is at 304 litres with a full-sized 16-inch spare wheel. It is not the biggest boot, but it can fit in a couple of carry-on bags and so on. It is on par with most of its rivals. The Fronx has a commendable ground clearance of 170 mm which will come in handy, wherever you drive it.
The Fronx is powered by a 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine with 77 kW and 138 Nm. You can choose between a five-speed manual or a four-speed automatic transmission. Because the car is so light, this power does go a long way. In fact, it is a great little engine. The fuel consumption is also excellent, I saw a reading of 6.3l/100 km on the auto. But you could probably get closer to the claimed number of 5.7l/100 km (5.5l/100 km for the manual). I drove both the manual and the auto, and I gunned it in both of them. Neither one irritated me, even on the highway, and that must tell you something. This little rocket can move. And it is a comfortable drive and rather quiet in the cabin. Overall, I would say it is my favourite drive in this segment, topped only by the Kia Sonet (which is more expensive).
Speaking of rivals, you’ve got quite a line up in the mix. Think Nissan Magnite, Renault Kiger, the aforementioned Kia Sonet, Hyundai Venue…the list goes on. But where the Fronx shines is with its pricing. When it was announced I think my mouth actually dropped open. Suzuki continues to offer customers excellent products at affordable prices. The Fronx will no doubt go to the top of my recommendation list. If you have R300 000 to spend on a car, this is the one you want to look at. It ticks so many boxes. If only we could change its name.
PRICING OF THE FRONX
- Suzuki Fronx 1.5 GL 5MT R279 900
- Suzuki Fronx 1.5 GL 4AT R299 900
- Suzuki Fronx 1.5 GLX 5MT R315 900
- Suzuki Fronx 1.5 GLX 4AT R335 900