Videos

BMW i3 vs Suzuki Swift Sport track battle video

We take the BMW i3 out of its natural urban environment and pit it against the Suzuki Swift Sport on the track

BMW i3 vs Suzuki Swift Sport

The BMW i3 is hot property at the moment and is one of the most desirable cars currently on the road - we even have one on our long-term fleet. We wondered how it would get on if we took it away from its natural urban environment, though. So, we took it to our test track. After all, it's rear-wheel drive and wears a BMW badge. 

To go up against it, we lined up the Suzuki Swift Sport - a traditional front-wheel drive hot hatch with a four-cylinder 1.6-litre engine putting out 134bhp. It'll hit 60mph in 8.7 seconds. In comparison, the tech-fest BMW i3 produces 168bhp from its electric motor and will reach 60mph in 7.9 seconds. It costs twice as much as the Suzuki, so how do they match up on the track? 

The two cars are very different on the track. You can tell the BMW is rear-wheel drive but the stability control keeps things in check. Don't expect it to drive like other BMWs either, as there's obviously a decent amount of body roll and it has very skinny tyres. Therefore, you have to drive it accordingly. It's also completely silent, which makes for a very different track experience. 

The Suzuki is very different. It has a revvy engine and you can use the engine braking through the gears when you come to a corner. It really is a textbook hot-hatch and you can be a lot more aggressive on the brakes and through the corners than the i3. 

The Suzuki beat the BMW by quite a margin in the end. The two cars couldn't be more different, but they're both enjoyable to drive on a track. The Suzuki Swift Sport is fantastic to drive around a track, but that isn't the whole story. Taking the BMW i3 out of its natural environment proves just how well engineered it is and that there's real pleasure to be had from driving it.

Recommended

New Suzuki Swift 2020 review
Suzuki Swift

New Suzuki Swift 2020 review

The Suzuki Swift has been facelifted for 2020, but have the changes boosted its appeal? We find out...
9 Nov 2020
Facelifted Suzuki Swift supermini launched
Suzuki Swift Hatchback

Facelifted Suzuki Swift supermini launched

Ford Fiesta-rivalling Suzuki Swift gets subtle update, with tweaked styling, more standard equipment and a new 1.2-litre hybrid engine
9 Sep 2020
Suzuki Swift review
Suzuki Swift - front
Suzuki Swift

Suzuki Swift review

The Suzuki Swift offers a decent drive and reasonable practicality, although rivals are more refined
27 Mar 2020
BMW i3 review
BMW i3s in-depth review - front
BMW i3

BMW i3 review

The BMW i3 is innovative, stylish and good to drive, while most of its electric-only rivals are not
26 Mar 2020

Most Popular

Electric Nissan e-NV200 Winter Camper concept revealed
Nissan e-NV200 Winter Camper concept
News

Electric Nissan e-NV200 Winter Camper concept revealed

All-electric campervan features a built-in kitchen, a folding bed and a power pack that can be recharged using a roof-mounted solar panel
21 Jan 2021
Updated Abarth 595 range launched with fresh interior
Abarth 595 2021 - main
Abarth 500

Updated Abarth 595 range launched with fresh interior

Subtle styling tweaks and a more emissions-friendly engine range for revised Abarth 595
22 Jan 2021
BMW 5 Series vs Audi A6 vs Volvo S90
BMW 5 Series vs Audi A6 vs Volvo S90 - main
Car group tests

BMW 5 Series vs Audi A6 vs Volvo S90

Can plug-in hybrid power create a clear winner out of the BMW 5 Series, Audi A6 or Volvo S90
23 Jan 2021