• (4.2) 5 reviews
  • Inventory Prices: $838–$7,854
  • Body Style: Hatchback
  • Combined MPG: 26
  • Engine: 126-hp, 2.0-liter I-4 (regular gas)
  • Drivetrain: Front-wheel Drive
  • Transmission: 4-speed automatic w/OD
2005 Suzuki Reno

Our Take on the Latest Model 2005 Suzuki Reno

What We Don't Like

  • Fuel economy
  • Acceleration
  • Rear visibility
  • Body roll
  • Shifter feel

Notable Features

  • Styling by Italdesign
  • Four-wheel disc brakes
  • Five-speed manual
  • Four-speed automatic option
  • Antilock brakes option

2005 Suzuki Reno Reviews

Cars.com Expert Reviews

Car enthusiast magazines are quick to point out — with now-it-can-be-told delight — that the Reno, from Japanese Suzuki, is actually assembled in South Korea. Scandal! Further, it's a product of General Motors and Daewoo. Gasp! It even has a GM engine from Australia. Shazam!

OK, so the Reno is an international puzzle. That alone would be a bad reason to dislike a vehicle. Sad to say, for the Reno there are some very good ones.

Puzzler No. 1 is the Reno's fuel economy, an EPA-estimated 22/30 mpg in city/highway driving. The table compares fuel economy among the Reno and several other small four-door hatchbacks, aka five-doors.

EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy (city/highway, mpg)*
In order of efficiency, best to worst
Toyota Matrix30/36
Ford Focus ZX526/35
Hyundai Elantra27/34
Kia Spectra525/33
Mazda Mazda325/32
Kia Rio Cinco (tie)25/31
Suzuki Aerio (tie)25/31
Suzuki Reno22/30
*All vehicles are five-doors equipped with manual transmissions

Note that even Suzuki's own Aerio, a larger vehicle, has better fuel economy. Oftentimes when a car is less efficient than others in its class, the upside is faster acceleration. Unfortunately, that's not the case here. I evaluated a Reno with the standard five-speed-manual transmission, and its power was merely decent. The engine is smooth and the torque is well distributed across the engine's rev range. If only there were more of it. ...

The gearshift lever is longish in both height and throw, and a little rubbery. The ride quality is so-so. The car's steering is well executed and roadholding is rather good, though it exhibits a good deal of body roll. Standard four-wheel disc brakes are a bonus in this class. ABS is an option, kindly available a la carte for $500.

The interior isn't bad at all. The ubiquitous faux-aluminum trim is present and inoffensive. The driver's seat has standard cushion-height adjustments, which is good, but the visibility to the rear isn't great due to a chunky D-pillar and a high belt line.

The slope of the roof makes backseat ingress an exercise in caution for tall folks, but they'll be surprised at the room once inside. Headroom is good and legroom is decent, though I found my knees raised more than I'd like by the height of the floor. There's a center floor hump, but it's not very high by today's standards.

The shape of the Reno's rear end makes its cargo volume smaller than average behind the rear seats, but with the standard 60/40-split, folding backrests lowered, the maximum cargo capacity is more competitive. Just as important, the seats fold in one easy step, requiring no cushion flip or head restraint removal.

The Reno's best attributes are probably its list of standard features and its generous warranty: a 7-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty that is deductible-free and stays with the car if it's sold. The bumper-to-bumper coverage is for 3 years/36,000 miles. Also included is three-year roadside assistance coverage and a courtesy vehicle program.

Hatchbacks might not get the respect in this country that they get in Europe and Asia, but the number of models on the market suggests the tide is turning.

Or is it? Does an increase in the number of hatchbacks on the market suggest acceptance? Five-doors such as the Pontiac Vibe, Scion xA, Subaru Impreza and Toyota Matrix seem to appeal to younger buyers. Dodge plans to replace the Neon model exclusively with a five-door, and Chevrolet already sells a five-door version of its midsize Malibu, called the Malibu Maxx. Among affordable compact and subcompact cars, hatchback versions of the Chevrolet Aveo, Ford Focus, Hyundai Elantra, and Kia Rio and Spectra are holding their own. In this increasingly crowded field of what isn't exactly an enthusiastically embraced body style, the obvious question is, do we really need another one? More to the point, do we need the Reno?

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Consumer Reviews

(4.2)

Average based on 5 reviews

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Hitting the 100,000 mile mark soon...

by bz from PA on June 16, 2011

I bought this car new, but in '06. It rides great. I drive an hour to work 5 days a week in all types of PA weather. My gas mileage is only 25 mpg though. I have close to 99,000 miles on it. It was in... Read Full Review

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3 Trims Available

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Wondering which configuration is right for you?
Our 2005 Suzuki Reno trim comparison will help you decide.
 

Suzuki Reno Articles

2005 Suzuki Reno Safety Ratings

Crash-Test Reports

Recalls

There are currently 4 recalls for this car.


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Safety defects and recalls explained

Service & Repair

Estimated Service & Repair cost: $4,800 per year.

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