Suzuki Ertiga: The value packed MPV – Which variant?

If you ask your average Filipino consumer to name the perfect recipe for a family car, chances are it has to have seven seats, value for money, an efficient engine, and is reliable enough to last for many years. The Suzuki Ertiga is Suzuki Philippines’ best-seller for those reasons, enjoying immense success since its introduction in 2012, and has quietly sat out on the Toyota Rush and Mitsubishi Xpander battle of early 2018.

Patience is a virtue and when Suzuki decided to launch their second generation Ertiga in the first month of 2019, it hit all the right notes, all while improving on the already successful formula that won over throngs of buyers almost seven years ago. We reviewed it and gave it praise for its fuel efficiency, styling, and better driving dynamics, and in this article, we’ll be helping you choose the variant that represents the best combination of value for money and features.

What’s improved?

The second generation Suzuki Ertiga now rides on a completely new platform, adopting a new 1.5L gasoline engine, and updating its interior and exterior considerably. You’re looking at a sharper design that embodies a modern MPV; clean lines, a strong front fascia, and nice execution of details such as the lights and trim pieces. Spread across four main variants, namely the GA M/T, GL M/T and A/T, and the top GLX A/T, the Ertiga shares the same configuration of seven seats and improved legroom across the board. You get a nice 803 liters of luggage space with the seats folded down, and a decent 153 liters with the third row in the upright position. The cabin has also been made more visually appealing, adding some neat accents that go well with a brave beige interior.

What stays the same with all variants?

All Ertigas come with a 1.5L gasoline engine that makes 103 hp and 138 Nm of torque. This engine can be had with either a five-speed manual or a four-speed automatic. Two airbags, ABS with electronic brakeforce distribution, and three point seatbelts for every passenger. ISOFIX and tether points are also standard across the board. Projector high beams and multi-reflector halogen headlights are also standard, together with LED taillights. Rotary style knobs for the manually adjustable climate control are also found across the range.

What sets them apart visually?

2019 Suzuki Ertiga Front Grille with Emblem.

Visually, there are very minor differences, and you’d be hard pressed to tell these cars apart. The base GA trim gets a non-chrome front grille and misses out on mud flaps and blacked out B-pillars, and it also gets steelies for the wheels. Moving up to the GL or GLX grants a chrome front grille and rear garnish, blacked out B and C pillars, chrome door handles, as well as the mud flaps and 15-inch alloys.

Entry-level and mid-tier

Plop down P728,000 and you can get yourself an Ertiga in GA trim with a five-speed manual. It comes with a decent amount of kit for the price, considering you’re already getting a versatile seven seater MPV. Aside from the visual differences we stated above, the inside gets a urethane steering wheel without audio control buttons. Windows are all power up and down, but the mirrors are manually adjustable. The biggest interior difference is the 1-DIN audio player that lacks bluetooth but has USB playback through only two speakers. The base model also lacks any seat height adjustment or seatback pockets for additional storage, and lacks any air conditioning vents for the back rows. You also need to live with manually locking your doors.

Stepping up to the GL Ertiga in either manual (P848,000) or automatic (P888,888) grants you a chrome grille, blacked out pillars, body colored side mirrors that are now electronically adjustable, and a handle operated tailgate opener. Fog lamps and mud flaps are also added to the GL variant, and the bigger wheels, too, adding more visual appeal. The back rows finally get their own aircon vents, and a nicer fabric seat design is found in the cabin. The biggest interior change is an 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system with offline navigation, bluetooth, and two more speakers. Rear parking sensors are now thrown in for more convenience. This puts the GL at a P120,000 or P160,888 premium over the base model GA, but it does get a substantial amount of kit.

What do you get with the GLX?

At P978,000 for the top trim GLX Ertiga, your exterior is complemented by chrome door handles and electronically foldable side mirrors with integrated indicators. On the inside, you get a leather wrapped setting wheel with audio controls, a wood trim on the dashboard, a keyless push to start system, a seat height adjuster for the driver, seatback pockets for both front seats, and ventilated cupholders for keeping your drinks cool. The infotainment gets a huge upgrade in the form of a 10-inch touchscreen with bluetooth and offline navigation, plus a rearview camera to help in parking.. Are all these goodies worth the additional P250,000 compared to the GA or the P130,000 over the GL M/T or P89,112 over the GL A/T?

Verdict

2019 Suzuki Ertiga Engine

If you must get your hands on some basic seven seater transportation that ticks all the right boxes and will serve as a daily driver without the frills, the Suzuki Ertiga in GA trim with the five speed manual will do just fine. It has all the necessary safety features and versatility for any family, and it’s extremely good value for money at P728,000.

But, if you’re willing to spend just a bit more, you can get the well-equipped GL trim in either the manual or automatic and have all the conveniences you will ever need. A good sized infotainment screen with bluetooth and navigation has you covered multimedia wise, and you get rear parking sensors for convenience. If you’re willing to lose out on some chrome accents, a seat height adjuster, and a huge infotainment screen with a reverse camera, the GL is our pick for the best variant in the Suzuki Ertiga lineup at just P848,000 for the manual or P888,888 for the automatic. The GLX is a splurge, and the stuff you get is nice, but doesn’t warrant the almost triple digit premium over the GL.

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