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by Tim Beissmann

Suzuki Australia has added the option of an automatic transmission to the entry-level Suzuki Swift GA.

As is the case throughout the Swift range, the four-speed auto comes at a $1700 premium over the five-speed manual. This means the new Suzuki Swift GA automatic will be priced from $17,690 before on-road costs, compared with $15,990 for the manual.

Like the rest of the Swift range, the new variant is powered by a 70kW/130Nm 1.4-litre engine. The auto is less efficient than the manual (6.2 litres/100km vs 5.5 litres/100km), but is still one of the most frugal offerings in the light car class.

The entry-level Swift GA comes standard with seven airbags and electronic stability control, as well as a four-speaker audio system with USB connectivity.

With its $17,690 price tag, the Swift GA automatic undercuts the auto variants of the Ford Fiesta CL ($18,990), Mazda2 Neo ($18,150) and the Holden Barina ($17,990), and closes the gap on the Honda Jazz GLi ($16,990), Toyota Yaris YR 5dr ($17,290) and the Hyundai i20 Active ($17,490).

The 2011 Suzuki Swift GA automatic is available in showrooms now.

Read CarAdvice’s review of the 2011 Suzuki Swift.