A new Clarion stereo with an in-dash CD player is the major change for the Esteem, a front-drive subcompact that comes in sedan and wagon body styles the latter is covered in the 2001 Station Wagon Buying Guide. All models get the new sound system with the CD player, and the top-shelf GLX+ model adds a cassette player.
A redesigned Esteem line is expected for the 2002 model year, when Suzuki may drop its smaller Swift.
A new grille gives the Esteem a fresh face for 2001. The Esteem sedan is 166 inches long 17 inches longer than the Swift but 9 inches shorter than the Honda Civic sedan. The Esteem also is wider than the Swift by nearly 4 inches and is 4.5 inches longer in wheelbase.
All models seat five with the usual two front bucket seats and a folding rear seat. Standard equipment includes some items not expected in this price range: air conditioning, a CD player and a rear window defogger. GLX models add power locks, windows and mirrors.
Under the Hood
All models use a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine with 122 horsepower. A five-speed manual transmission is standard, and a four-speed automatic is optional.