Seat's long awaited first SUV model will be called the Ateca, and will make its debut at the Geneva motor show next month
2 February 2016

Seat’s first ever SUV model, based on the Leon hatchback, will take the Ateca name when it goes on sale in the UK later this year.

The new SUV, which will be seen for the first time at next month’s Geneva motor show, has been spotted testing numerous times in the run up to its official unveiling and is part of a three-model family planned by the Spanish car maker.

Seat filed a trademark application for the Ateca name in November of last year, and despite opposition being filed from niche German car maker Artega - on the grounds that the two names sounded too similar - Seat looks to be pushing ahead with the name.

Other names registered by Seat in recent months include Teqta, Conqera, Teroqa, Formentera.

The Ateca and Formentera names follow Seat’s tradition of naming its cars after locations in its Spanish homeland. Ateca is a town in the north of the country while Fomentera is an island off the eastern coast of Spain.

The first Seat SUV is envisioned as a rival for the Nissan Qashqai and was described by former Seat boss Jürgen Stackmann as having agile and precise handling. Speaking to Autocar last year, Stackmann said: “We have done a lot of research into why people buy these kinds of vehicles and what our competitors already offer, and these characteristics should help us stand out.”

Visually, Seat’s Ateca SUV will not be styled to present its off-road credentials, with Seat preferring a reserved design more akin to the current Leon family instead. The styling of the SUV has been previewed before, firstly with the IBX concept in 2011 and latterly with the 20v20 concept at last year’s Geneva show.

Power for the Seat SUV could come from the existing Leon family of engines while a hot Cupra version is also being considered. Research is under way to see how far Seat’s sporty sub-brand can be pushed.

The new Seat SUV should quickly become a volume model for the brand when it goes on sale, capitalising on the rising demand for crossovers and SUVs in Europe. A smaller Nissan Juke rival is also planned, as well as a larger seven-seat SUV.

Our Verdict

Seat Leon
Seat offers five engines for the Leon, ranging from a 104bhp 1.2 petrol to a 181bhp 2.0 diesel

Seat's third-generation Leon is attractive and capable, but it can't quite match the best this class can offer

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Comments
11

2 February 2016

The phase " Seat preferring a reserved design more akin to the current Leon family" is a way of saying 'prepare yourself for a let down. Still think of the money you'll save by putting bigger wheels and taller shocks on your standard Leon!

 

Hydrogen cars just went POP

A34

2 February 2016
Autocar wrote:

Seat preferring a reserved design more akin to the current Leon family instead

Actually that's good news - conservative styling sells, as any VW salesman knows. The Leon it pretty tidy (vs for example Toyota - have you seen the new RAV4?). Provided its not as boring as a Tiguan they should do OK.

2 February 2016

Tiguan with a Seat front grafted on. But like the Exeo was but with Audi. Pretty bland but hope it sells. Given the recent woes at VW, I was afraid Seat was for the chop.

2 February 2016

It's taken sooo long for SEAT to get it's first SUV to market. And now it's not going to deliver on what should have been it's saving grace - it's styling! VW and Skoda do conservative, so I fail to see the point of SEAT if they go down the conservative route also.

2 February 2016
erly5 wrote:

It's taken sooo long for SEAT to get it's first SUV to market. And now it's not going to deliver on what should have been it's saving grace - it's styling! VW and Skoda do conservative, so I fail to see the point of SEAT if they go down the conservative route also.

Agreed, after 20 years VW still have no idea what SEAT actually stands for

2 February 2016

Not again. There is always someone who says "what's the point of SEAT". Why do people always pick on poor SEAT? It does amazingly well given the preference and money VW throws at the other VAG brands.

3 February 2016

This is a car I'd have been very interested in as VAG don't do competitive small SUV's. The Q3 is just too expensive to buy and to run, VW Tiguan is based on a 3 year old Golf and Skoda has their Yeti which may tick all the right boxes but looks like a commercial vehicle. VAG have been slow on the uptake of small suv's which I find surprising.

3 February 2016

My mistake, meant to say VW Tiguan has the interior from a 6 year old Golf.

3 February 2016

Just wait till march, there's a new tiguan and Q2 being launched.

 

Hydrogen cars just went POP

3 February 2016

Oh joy of joys, yet another SUV.

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