THE BUZZ: Kizashi is a Japanese reference to something good coming, and with its spacious interior, Euro-style exterior, traction control, and front and rear air bags, this zippy sports sedan lives up to its name.
THE TEST: The more-powerful-than-it-sounds 2.4-liter, 185-hp four-cylinder engine and smooth six-speed manual transmission beg you to drive the Kizashi like a sports car on any mountain road or coastal highway. The only bummer? The manual transmission is offered only with two-wheel drive the all-wheel-drive version is currently available only as a rough, fun-sapping automatic.
THE VERDICT: Stay away from snow and ice and the manual version becomes a screaming deal even before you factor in the great fuel economy on road trips. From $19,000; mpg, 21 city/31 hwy; suzuki.com