Upon the request of many of our readers, we’d like to revisit the long term tests that we did for our 2011 Kia Soul, 2014 Suzuki Ertiga, and 2016 Suzuki Ciaz. We’ll start with the Ciaz because we think our tests are still relevant since it’s still the same model that’s currently being marketed by the Suzuki Automobile dealers across the country.
We were so enamored with the Suzuki Ciaz during its launch and during our photo shoot for a Power Wheels Magazine cover story that we vowed to get one for our series of long term tests. Our Vice President for Sales and Marketing, Shariffa “Shawie” Dizon, met with Jek Sangel, who was then working for the marketing department of the Automobile Division of Suzuki Philippines, Inc. (SPH) and submitted a proposal. We didn’t know that Jek was leaving SPH to further his career in the automotive industry but he was able to have our proposal approved by Shuzo Hoshikura, then Suzuki Automobile General Manager and also by Norminio “Boying” Mojica, SPH Managing Director, and Hiroshi Suzuki, SPH President. Jek told us that their management liked our long term tests with the 2014 Suzuki Ertiga 1.4 GLX A/T, and they felt that our series of tests helped increase the sales of that model. They’re confident that we can do the same to the Ciaz. We hope so, too.
So, on a sizzling hot Monday afternoon (July 25, 2016), we went to the Suzuki Philippines factory inside the Carmel Industrial Estates in Canlubang, Laguna to take delivery of our 2016 Suzuki Ciaz 1.4 GLX A/T with Conduction Sticker No. UE-1079. Like our former Ertiga long term test unit, which was painted Dusky Brown Metallic, we opted to get another brown Suzuki, albeit an attractive metallic shade called Prime Dignity Brown. What can we say? We just like brown Suzuki vehicles. We got lucky with a brown Ertiga, so why not a brown Ciaz?
We struck the traditional “vehicle turnover pose” with Sir Boying Mojica and other SPH marketing personnel along with our brand-new Ciaz, which only has 8.5 kilometers on the odometer. And, as we promised Sir Boying, we brought our vintage and unrestored bicycle – a rare 1950’s Suzuki rod brake roadster – that we will lend to SPH for display at their lobby and during shows, if they wish. It was just a coincidence that our vintage Suzuki bicycle was also finished in a shade of brown. We really got ourselves into a brown derby.
First Fill-up and Car Blessing
After the traditional and expected long farewells, Shawie drove off with our new Ciaz and passed by the Shell service station along the South Super Highway near San Pedro, Laguna. With 26.5 kilometers on the odometer, she had the fuel tank filled up with 31.16 liters of Shell FuelSave gasoline that costs P1,233.94. The attendants cleaned the windshield and backlight, and they were very careful around the car when they found out that it was a fresh, brand-new unit. They also liked the brown color. Once we got home, our son Chevy Martin saw it fit to remove all the remaining plastic wrappings off the Ciaz.
To cap the week, we drove the Ciaz up to Antipolo City on a rainy Sunday (July 31st) to have it blessed at the Basilica of the Lady of Peace and Safe Journeys. We realized that Sunday was a busy day for the church but we managed to find a suitable parking lot, have the Ciaz blessed, pay homage to the Virgin Mary and line up to kiss her mantle, attend and complete the 4:00PM mass, and buy the traditional pasalubong (gifts) of suman (sticky rice), matamis na bao (coconut jam) and kasuy (cashew) nuts. We felt so lucky that we were able to do all that in one Sunday afternoon that we are beginning to believe that brown is indeed our lucky color.
Meguiar’s Paint Protection
Like our old Ertiga, we had our Ciaz coated with Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze Deep Crystal Coat M188 premium long-lasting paint protection system. The treatment is applied over the car’s finish to make it more durable and resistant against light scratches by 25 percent. Shawie drove our Ciaz to the Meguiar’s Training and Service Center at their former shop along Kamias Road in Quezon City for the application of the Deep Crystal Coat M188 and left it there for two days. We later learned that the Ciaz was washed, dried, and a thin layer of road grime was removed using Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze 105 Professional Ultra-Cut Compound with Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze W-4000 Cut N’ Shine Pad on a buffing machine. Afterwards, a Meguiar’s Professional Soft Buff W-8000 Polishing Pad was used to apply Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze 205 Professional Ultra-Finishing Polish to add gloss to the brown paint. Then it was sprayed with Meguiar’s Glass Cleaner and wiped dry to remove the wax and give the Deep Crystal Coat M188 better adhesion to the paint. The coating was left to dry overnight to ensure maximum adhesion and effective protection.
Shawie took the Ciaz home from Meguiar’s but, as it always happens when you have a nice clean car, heavy rains greeted her on the road. She reported that the rain formed large water beads on the hood, roof and trunk and simply rolled off the car. She also reported that the car felt so clean and smelled so good after the Meguiar’s technicians also had the interior treated with leather protection. Despite the heavy rain and resulting traffic, she drove with a big, satisfied smile on her face.
After a week of ownership and with a mileage of around 280 kilometers on the odometer, we found that our Ciaz returned a gas mileage of 7.56 kilometers per liter and cost us P4.91 per kilometer, which is still remarkable because we drove it in crawling traffic almost all that time. We also learned that a Suzuki Ciaz achieved 27.94 kilometers per liter on the highway during a fuel economy run conducted by the Department of Energy (DOE). That is one record that we’d like to challenge ourselves to achieve. Watch this space!
Odometer reading: 280 km
Mileage since last report: 280 km
Average fuel mileage: 7.56 km/L
Fuel cost per kilometer: P4.91/km
Service cost per kilometer: N/A
Current running costs: P4.91/km