This is my 2nd Esteem and a favorite of my current cars. I found my 2000 GLX wagon on craigslist for $2500.00 with only 92k miles. It has every available option and is in excellent shape. I bought the car as a spare vehicle to save miles on our much more expensive Toyota Sienna. My daily driver was a deisel VW Jetta. But after the Jetta had a mechanical problem I started driving the Suzuki. That was 9 months ago and now I the Suzuki is my daily driver. I love the reliability, gas mileage and hauling capacity of this GREAT little car. I do all the work on my cars and I can tell you Suzukies were designed with a mechanics input. They are cheap and easy to service and the parts are still available. Don't let the fact that Suzuki motors is no longer in business scare you off. This has driven the prices down and that is a plus in my book. If you loved the reliability and ingenuity of the cars Honda designed back in the 80s and 90s you will love Suzuki. These are great cars and I'm going to be looking for more of them when my kids approach driving age.
We bought our Esteem in 1999 but it's an 2000 GLX model. I got the car since my father passed away 6 years ago and now in 2013, it still runs like a champ.
I did the brakes pads once and then later on got some aftermarket drilled and slotted rotors and ceramic brake pads and new shoes and drums for the back.
In all these 13+ years the car has never broke down on the road but once it didn't start in the garage. it was just the CMP sensor and that's about a 15 minute job for this car. Replaced the Idle Control Valve once, alternator and the struts and besides the regular wear items, tires, battery, belt, It keeps on going.
My A/C never had problems since new and always blows cold.
Great A/C unit, easy to drive. It's just a great dependable car to take my child to school and me to work everyday and don't have to worry about it breaking down like a lot of more expensive brands.
Has a timing chain and not a belt so no replacement or pre maintenance care. Change the oil every 3 months and add gas and go. Great little car.
Could use a smoother ride and a quieter interior. A little more pep in the motor. A little higher stance since I'm a tall guy. Sorry can't find too much on a car that is suppose to be simple and reliable because it is.
Car was two years old and had 30,000 miles on it at purchase. I'd read good reviews, but my expectations were low. I was just looking for a cheap little wagon to drive for a while. I tested a 1.6L, but it was underpowered. The 1.8L is way better. I liked that the 1.8L wouldn't need timing belt replacement, since it has a chain. Well, I've been surprised by how much I love this car. It's cute, extremely peppy, and fits a ton of stuff. It's amazingly reliable. In five years, I've put 30,000 miles on it, mostly vacation driving. We've taken it out on the road for weeks at a time without a worry. It's been from sea level to Colorado mountain tops. It's a champ.
Everything works! No timing belt, A/C is cold, runs strong and smooth. And it was CHEAP! These cars were a well-kept secret. Too bad they stopped making them. I'd get another one for my son.
I'm a car gal. I've owned at least 20, from Porsches to SUVs. We bought this car used with 30,000 miles on it. Our expectations were low, we were just buying a cheap car to drive around town. We love it! We have taken it on road trip vacations for several summers in a row. It is peppy, reliable, gets good mpg and holds a lot of gear. I'm glad these cars weren't "discovered" because it allowed us to pick one up cheap. The GLX package is packed full of features that make it comfortable and pleasant to drive. (AC, CC, moonroof, 6 CD changer, roof racks, etc.) I think this is one of the most under-rated cars I've ever owned.
Peppy little engine, sleek styling, and good value.
I wish there was a shoulder belt and head rest in the rear center position.
here we go......this is the same car as in the review above. Now, it has 140000 miles on it(I commute 100 miles toand from work each day). I cannot say enough about this car. In 130k miles, here are my repairs: 4 front brake jobs (including the de-laminated brake pad), replaced front rotors once, 2 sets of tires, I had a stalling problem at around 105k that was the ONLY repair that was not wear-and-tear related. It was a throttle control valve or something. I am on my ORIGINAL rear brakes. It has only not started for me once, so I changed the plugs.this was at 120k. New plugs also cleared the check engine light. I really beat this car. Simply, the best car I have EVER owned.
Space galore in a small package, RELIABILITY,RELIABILITY,RELIABILITY!!! big glove box, 27-30 mpg when gas is $2.00/gal.
since they dont make this model anymore, this is a moot point. The Aerio is a cool little wagon, but I think I'm moving up to a grand Vitara next.