Speaking at the Paris motor show, where Seat confirmed production of its new Nissan Juke rival, Luca de Meo says VW Group hardware means the car should be among the best small SUVs
Jim Holder
29 September 2016

The launch of the all-new Seat Ibiza small hatchback and Seat Arona SUV next year will be game-changing for the brand, chief executive Luca de Meo believes.

Take your first look at the Arona - caught testing - here

The all-new Ibiza will launch next summer and be the first Volkswagen Group car to utilise the MQB A0 platform that will eventually underpin all of the group's supermini-sized hatches, saloons and SUVs. As such, Seat will get access not only to the new platform first but also the complimentary powertrain, hardware and infotainment systems.

"Seat will have the best, or close to the best, car in the segment," said de Meo. "The platform gives us access to the latest engines, dynamics tuning, safety equipment, infotainment - the list is long.

"That's a good story for Seat to tell. The Ibiza has long been the backbone of our brand and now we can truly say we have the best foundation in the group and segment."

The Seat Arona small SUV will be based on the same underpinnings as the new Ibiza and launch next autumn as a rival to the Nissan Juke. Although de Meo would not be drawn on specifics, he said the Arona would be styled closely to the larger Seat Ateca SUV that recently launched as a Nissan Qashqai rival.

Our Verdict

Seat Ateca

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"When I park our four cars alongside each other, I see a family," he said. "When you have 1-2% market coverage like us, you need consistency, not individual models that nobody recognises across our brands.

"Like the Ateca, the Arona is entering a segment that is red hot. We have the right ingredients for another success."

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2

29 September 2016
"When I park our four cars alongside each other, I see a family,"

Luca de Meo wrote:

"When I park our four cars alongside each other, I see a family,"

So that's the Mii, the Ibiza, the Toledo, the Leon, the Ateca and the Alhambra. 4 cars?

I wonder who the black sheeps are.

 

 

29 September 2016
I think the Mii (terrible name) and Toledo have not been successful and possibly won't be replaced.
So, the forthcoming new Ibiza, Arona, Leon and Ateca makes the A-list family.
The Alhambra however is a surprising sales success, but maybe not stylish enough to warrant a mention at this exciting launch time.

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Our Verdict

Seat Ateca

Seat's first attempt at building an SUV is a cracker and knocked the Nissan Qashqai off its perch in the process, so we discover what makes the Ateca our class leader

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week