Curbside Classic: Swift-Metro “Bumblebee” Edition

Even in these latitudes filled with Korean and Japanese fuel efficient machinery, Swifts and Metros come out of the woodwork when gas prices swell. In the last few months these little gas-savers have been appearing all over, and on the virtual sales world, commanding an uptick in trade prices.

Tatra87 gets pristine curbsides, while those in Oregon get inventive ones. I get a lot of non-creative shabby ones; with this bumblebee Swift/Metro proving the exemption, as it’s as inventive as locals get. Besides the unique color treatment, the use of badges has been freely exercised, as locals LOVE their stinking badges (The Treasure of Sierra Madre be damned!). That Autobots hood emblem shows the forces of good are ready to take on the Decepticons and save the earth, all with low fuel consumption to boot.

Transformers made a HUGE splash in Central America during the 80’s, and with Michael Bay reviving the franchise, those tacky emblems appear rather often in daily traffic. Clearly, this Autobot Swift/Metro had a bit of work done besides the paint job; with that hood scoop being as fake as fake can be, and its shoddy handiwork showing no real Cybertronic technology was involved.

Meanwhile, Dunlop, Darkside Motoring and Falken are joining in some kind of promotional ménage á trois affair. Was this even consensual? Locals also love their stinking stickers, in case you didn’t notice. As for the taped-in zebra motive in the back gate, don’t ask me what the thinking was. I guess… err, reasons?

For those not into hatchbacks, here’s the upscale sedan Swift/Metro version. Why adding a boot made a vehicle upscale has always been beyond my grasping. In the good ol’ 90’s, sales of sedans outpaced that of hatchbacks in the US supposedly for that reason, or so it was claimed. Maybe those tiny hatches just brought too many memories of the dreary early 80’s. So, for those with snobby tendencies, this Geo Metro can bring that upscale experience with the same gas-saving qualities of its hatchback companion.

Regrettably, while US assembled Metros are as reliable as Japanese ones, this sample aches of the same biodegradable lacquer GM vehicles suffered from in the 80’s-90’s. A not quite up to spec US provider perhaps? Either that or this model was left for too long under the wrong tree. Some of our local tropical fruits do have paint-corrosive innards.

Don’t get me wrong, I like these Suzuki-developed little critters (though I prefer the squarish lines of the previous generation). Maybe that ruined paint could be a good canvas for some creative soul? With some badges and color stripes, I’m sure some knock off Autobot can be created.

More Swifts/Metros:

1991 Geo Metro XFi

1989 Suzuki Swift GT

1992 Suzuki Swift GS Four Door Sedan

Suzuki Swifts in Their Native Habitat