The Celerio’s hard to fault if you stick to short journeys around town. It’s frugal and easy to drive but it can get noisy at motorway speeds and it’s a bit bumpy on rougher roads
The Celerio comes with a 1.0-litre petrol engine producing 65hp. It’s far from the fastest small car on sale but it’s nippy enough to make light work of city driving. It’ll accelerate from 0-62mph in a not-particularly-thrilling 13.5 seconds but Suzuki claims it’ll return an impressive 65.7mpg – in normal driving you can expect to see a figure approaching 60mpg.
You can get a very slightly more powerful Dualjet version in SZ3 trim with 68hp that’ll reach 62mph from rest in 13 seconds but you’ll barely notice the difference in normal driving and it costs an extra £600. It only emits 84g of CO2 per kilometre compared to the standard car’s 99g.
Just because the Celerio’s bigger inside than many small cars doesn't mean it’s more relaxing to drive – posher alternatives make it feel a bit old-fashioned
Sadly, both engines are quite loud at speed and even the more powerful version has to work hard to keep up with motorway traffic. Both the VW Up and Hyundai i10 are available with more powerful engines that’ll be more suitable for long motorway journeys.
You can get the Celerio with an automatic gearbox for an extra £800 but it’s not particularly responsive and can cause the engine to rev loudly when you accelerate hard. It’s a little jerky at slow speeds too, which can make traffic jams more stressful than they ought to be. You’re better off saving yourself some cash and sticking to the manual.
You won’t have any trouble driving the Celerio around town. Its large windows and thin pillars between the doors and windscreen make it easy to see out of and a doddle to park – handy because you can’t get it with parking sensors or a reversing camera.
All the pedals are nicely spaced and the light steering makes it easy to thread through tight city streets. Unfortunately the steering can sometimes hesitate before returning to the straight-ahead position which doesn’t inspire much confidence on a winding country road.
The Suzuki’s rather stiff suspension can highlight bumps around town but does help stop its boxy body from leaning too much in tight corners. This’ll help stop your passengers from feeling car sick on long drives, too.
Unfortunately, it’s not quite as safe as these other small cars. The Celerio earned a three-star safety rating from Euro NCAP in 2014 compared to the four-star i10 and five-star Up. This is partly down to its lack of advanced active safety tech such as automatic emergency braking that’ll help stop the car quickly if it senses a vehicle in the road ahead. You also have to do without lane-keeping assist, cruise control or a speed limiter.