Sunday 22 October 2017

Motors: Seat targets rough riders with refreshed models

The Seat X-perience is in showrooms now
The Seat X-perience is in showrooms now

Martin Brennan

Seat is a brand on the move with sales hitting record levels and five new or refreshed models on the way. The company notched up 828 sales in January, an impressive number considering that only a few years ago the total for a full year was 900.

Now the Spanish arm of the VW family has 22 dealers and later this year will introduce a refreshed Ibiza and Alhambra MPV, two SUV models in 2016, and a totally new Ibiza model is on the way in 2017.

The first of the firm's 4x4 vehicles to arrive here is the X-Perience which is based on the Leon ST wagon and is in the showrooms now. It offers greater off-road versatility and practicality than the ST as it can mix the rough with the smooth. Thanks to the 4x4, it has serious towing capacity of 2,000kg so bringing the caravan is no problem.

Seat make the point that their models are generally "better looking" than those of cousins, Skoda and VW, and good value for money too, although the X-Perience pricing is steep at €32,495 and €35,495 for the two-litre TDi 150bhp and the two-litre TDi 184bhp with automatic DSG gearbox.

About 100 models a year are expected to be sold but this will improve when a 1.6 litre TDi two-wheel drive version comes to the market in mid-year with an estimated €28,000-plus price tag.

Sunday Independent

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