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New common-rail diesel adds refinement to the practical warm hatch mix

Our Verdict

Leon

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
13

7 April 2009

Looks like a good alternateive to the rather pricey VW Golf GTD.

Are you sure the 140 bhp diesel is the old PD variant?

I thought that was purely the 1.9 TDi and all 2009 VW group 2.0 TDi engines are now CR engines, regardless of whether they are 140 or 170 bhp?

7 April 2009

The old 1.9 TDi PD only got as high as the 130BHP flavour, whereas the 2.0TDi PD was available in either 140 or 170BHP, the latter being in the previous Leon FR.

My MK1 Leon TDi SE has the 1.9TDi 130PD engine and it's always punchy yet refined enough at cruising speeds on the motorway. After 5 1/2 years of ownership and 110K miles I may just be tempted by the new FR - if the company move me up a grade which qualifies for car allowance! :o)

7 April 2009

[quote Orangewheels]

Are you sure the 140 bhp diesel is the old PD variant?

[/quote]

Yes it is. Only VW and Audi cars have made a complete switch to the 2.0 TDi common-rail.

Check out the new Skoda Superb. The 140bhp is still the PD model. The 170bhp is CR. Its all to do with the great VAG heirachy. The 'lesser' brands dont get the new techonology for a while after the 'premium' brands.

This also explains why the new Seat Ibiza has such old gutless engines - The VW Polo and Audi A1 must get the lastest TSi engines first.

7 April 2009

Seems like a great car for Fabia Vrs fans who are seeking to upgrade- bigger kids, bigger self, bigger dog- please pick. The Leon seems very similar, according to the review- practical, rapid, relatively discreet (though still with some subtle sporty looks), and with "livable" suspension settings- sporty enough handling without bone-crunching ride- all similar to the Fabia Vrs.

As Skoda are reportedly selling their new Fabia Vrs (when they eventually get around to launching it) at a significantly higher list price, with standard spec rumoured to be stingey (however plenty of costly options available- yes!!) and also apparently refusing to offer diesel power (Golf GT sourced 1.4 turbo petrol instead, despite the surprising popularity of the original diesel-only Fabia Vrs), the Leon FR diesel looks very tempting. I've read on other sites various Fabia Vrs fans speaking favourably about the Leon FR diesel even prior to the mid-life modifications (that's the one with the 1980s-style Brittish Rail bone-shaker type ride).

Also remember that the current second generation Fabia is based on the original Fabia chassis, but with increased height (up 47mm in standard models) on the bodywork- both factors probably not causing Renaultsport's handling department to lose any sleep!! Personally, I would love to see the new Faiba Vrs with similar suspension settings (everyday compromise setting- firmish but not too firm) to the last one (shouldn't be too hard as its on the same chassis...) and the new CR 170 bhp 2.0 diesel- Octavia Vrs-smashing performance!! That would make a refined, high-performance, GT-style pocket-rocket!! Skoda could even launch a Fabia Vrs estate?!! No, my medication has not run out- the standard Octavia is about as exciting as a soggy bag of chips but in Vrs guise has still sold well as both hatch and estate.

PS - Can't believe suggesting a Fabia Vrs estate- Doctor, where are the pills!!

8 April 2009

[quote eenymac]The old 1.9 TDi PD only got as high as the 130BHP flavour[/quote]

150 actually. That was in the mark IV Golf GT-TDI PD 150.

8 April 2009

[quote simonali]150 actually. That was in the mark IV Golf GT-TDI PD 150.[/quote]

Yep, forgot the MK1 FR had the PD150 as well. I still think the 1.9 130PD is a superb engine - ok, a little coarse when cold but huge amounts of torque for those steep uphill overtaking blasts that seem to leave others behind. :o)

8 April 2009

Seat Ibiza Cupra 160HP 1.9TDI

Leaves room for Seat Leon Cupra TDI Twin Turbo 200HP

9 April 2009

Seems like a useful series of updates. Also looks as if this one will avoid the £1.5k price hike that VW is applying to the equivalent Golf.

Well done Seat!

13 April 2009

Seems like a great car for Fabia Vrs fans who are seeking to upgrade- bigger kids, bigger self, bigger dog- please pick. The Leon seems very similar, according to the review- practical, rapid, relatively discreet (though still with some subtle sporty looks), and with "livable" suspension settings- sporty enough handling without bone-crunching ride- all similar to the Fabia Vrs.

As one of those vRS owners, although not looking for something bigger, I'd consider a Leon except for one serious flaw. I really don't like the blind spot from the huge sloping windsreen pillars.

18 April 2009

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