The Seat Ateca is the brand's first SUV model, which the Spanish car maker hopes will bring it back to volume sales

The Seat Ateca, the firm’s crucial new SUV, will be priced from £17,990 when it goes on sale on 3 May, with first UK deliveries expected in September.

The starting price undercuts the Nissan Qashqai, a key rival to the Ateca, which is priced from £18,545.

Three trim levels are available for the Ateca: S, SE and Xcellence; SE models will start from £19,590 and Xcellence from £23,905. Top-spec Xcellence cars will come with a 187bhp 2.0-litre TDI engine, a DSG automatic gearbox and four-wheel-drive, priced at £29,990.

Read Autocar's review of the 2016 Seat Ateca

SUVs have been rapidly gaining popularity in Europe, and last year became the biggest-selling type of car in the region for the first time. The Ateca, which has a similar footprint to the Leon, is Seat’s first ever SUV and should bring significant growth to the VW Group brand.

It will also be followed by a smaller SUV based on the next-generation Ibiza, which is due in 2017, with a larger SUV under investigation for production by the end of the decade.

Underpinned by the VW Group’s versatile MQB platform, the Ateca is 4.36m long, which makes it just 2cm shorter than the Qashqai. It shares its 2.64m wheelbase with the Leon, while the 1.84m width and 1.6m height are also in line with the Qashqai.

The five-seat Ateca will be offered with standard front-wheel drive and optional four-wheel drive from launch and a familiar range of turbocharged petrol and diesel engines.

The entry-level petrol unit is the three-cylinder 113bhp 1.0 TSI. A 1.4 TSI with 148bhp and cylinder deactivation technology is the other petrol engine. A 1.6 TDI diesel is offered with 113bhp, and a 2.0 TDI with 148bhp or 187bhp.

All engines come with a six-speed manual gearbox as standard, with a seven-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic gearbox optional on more powerful engines. All-wheel drive is offered on the diesel engines only.

The most efficient model in the range is the 113bhp 1.6 TDI with a manual gearbox and front-wheel drive. This has CO2 emissions of 112g/km and combined economy of 65.7mpg.

Seat has already confirmed that an FR version of the Ateca will be offered at a later date, and that a performance Cupra version is under consideration. Versions with off-road styling are also likely.

The new Ateca, named after a village in Spain, sports a sharp, sculptured design evolved from that of the Leon range. Among the features are full LED headlights and the option of LEDs in the exterior mirrors that illuminate the floor area around the doors when they are unlocked, projecting the Ateca name at the same time. A similar feature is offered on Range Rovers.

The interior is also familiar from the Leon, borrowing that car’s looks and touchscreen infotainment system. The gear lever has been shortened, however, in order to to give it a more sporty feeling.

Seat is pushing the sporting credentials of the Ateca. R&D boss Matthias Rabe describes the cars as having the “most dynamic ride possible”, and “light-footed, precision handling”. 

The Ateca’s boot capacity is rated at 510 litres, reducing to 485 litres on all-wheel drive versions. This is significantly greater than the Qashqai’s standard 430 litres.

Technology features on the Ateca include wireless smartphone charging, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, and the ability to wave your foot under the tailgate for it to open automatically.

Another feature is an autonomous driving function called Traffic Jam Assist that steers, accelerates and brakes the car in heavy traffic at speeds of up to 37mph. Also new is a function called Emergency Assist that detects if the driver has been inactive for a period before pinging an alert, pulsing the brake and then bringing the car to a standstill if there’s no reaction. 

Our Verdict

Seat Ateca SUV

The Seat Ateca is the first of two confirmed new SUVs to be launched by the brand. We've been to Spain to get early driving impressions in a prototype

Join the debate

Comments
27

10 February 2016

The Seat Tiguain. Looking forward to seeing a Skoda version of this as a new upmarket Yeti. Will sell heaps. The SEAT will probably sell well in Spain.

10 February 2016

"The SEAT will probably sell well in Spain." That's a rather predictable meaningless comment.
You do realise Germany is SEAT's largest market where it's a top 10 selling brand?

A34

11 February 2016

So this will be the first 3-cylinder SUV? Probably OK for urbanites but the S and U stuff in SUV, not to mention motorways, might need the 1.4 or diesel grunt.

Agree though this looks like the basis for the next Yeti - but its shorter than the 4.5m Tiguan. Definitely a Qashqai alternative. Or Dacia Duster...

10 February 2016

A good looking car, IMHO. The side profile (apart from the upswept rear quarter light) is a perfect expression of Skoda's current design language. What's the betting that, after a minor nose and tail job, this will appear as the next Yeti and look like a smaller brother to the Kodiak large SUV? The latter will then have a nose and tail job to become the large Seat SUV! Not exactly "badge engineering" but not far off.

10 February 2016

Great minds...!

10 February 2016

OK but missing the point a bit if its so 'dynamic' meaning hard riding, many of the people are migrating into SUV's partly because the roads are so bad and cars went all low and hard that they are seeking the softer rides. Presumably its to differentiate from the more normal riding Skoda version which I agree will be the one to have.

10 February 2016

It is very much a Skoda isn't it, particularly the overhang at the rear. What's the betting that VW have told Skoda to hang on for a bit, and let Seat have first go with this one as they haven't had any new models to offer for a while.

10 February 2016

With the SEAT Leon Allroad thingy as our family/dog/bike/cack carrier when our Passat estate gives up in a few years time. I think it's a pretty decent attempt without all the crazy lines seen on the Mazda CX SUVs.

10 February 2016

If you rear end someone in traffic while the car is in it's autonomous "traffic Jam assist" function, who is liable, you or Seat?

 

 

11 February 2016

What a silly question! The car has liability, of course. What jurisdiction could ever recognise a SEAT driver as a wholly sentient being?

Pages

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Car review
    23 September 2016
    Aston kicks off its ‘second century plan’ with an all-new turbo V12 grand tourer
  • Ford Ka+ 1.2 Ti-VCT 85
    First Drive
    22 September 2016
    A rounded, refined and well-sorted bargain supermini – once you’re used to the confusing role redefinition imposed on the once-cheeky Ka
  •  Maserati Ghibli Diesel
    First Drive
    22 September 2016
    Maserati releases another range of updates for its range best seller, the Ghibli. We've driven the diesel version, but there's little improvement on before
  • Tipo Front
    First Drive
    21 September 2016
    New Fiat Tipo offers impressive space and practicality for a reasonable price. We try the 1.6 diesel on the demanding roads of North Wales
  • Seat Ateca 1.4 TSI 150
    First Drive
    20 September 2016
    The Seat Ateca 1.4 TSI 150 makes perfect sense: it's spacious, tidy to drive for an SUV and cheap to run