Seat’s upcoming Arona small SUV will get a hardened off-roading version like its Ateca sibling, with all-wheel drive and rugged styling

The Seat Arona small SUV will get the same rugged, off-road variant, called X-Perience, as its Ateca sibling following its launch late next year.

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

The Ateca X-Perience, which was revealed at the Paris motor show earlier this year, gained 18in wheels with high-profile tyres, scratch resistant matte green paint and black body cladding, as well as orange highlights across the exterior and interior. It will also have a four-wheel drive system already found on high-end Ateca versions.

The Arona X-Perience is expected to gain the same features, grafted onto the model’s smaller package. We expect the Ateca X-Perience to be priced at around £1000 above the top-spec Ateca Xcellence trim, so the same premium is likely for the Arona X-Perience, which is also expected to feature the range-topping Xcellence trim, given Seat’s extension of the Xcellence badge to the Leon.

Talking about the Ateca X-Perience, Seat’s research and development vice president, Matthias Rabe, said: “The X-Perience is an exercise to show the Ateca family’s possibilities and potential in the future.

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"With the Ateca X-Perience we can go beyond that which we already have in the series. It’s for the customer who wants to go further, taking it to the extreme, for weekend adventures and, of course, off-road.”

A number of Seat executives declined to comment on an Arona X-Perience, hinting at the plans. Meanwhile, a Seat spokesman could not confirm anything more than the Arona’s arrival in the second half of next year, and its shared platform with the next Seat Ibiza and Audi Q2. However, with Seat considering the Arona as one of its four key models in the future, it is highly likely an X-Perience model will reach production.

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Our Verdict

Seat Arona

Seat is on a roll but can the Arona, its new junior SUV, cut it in such an ultra-competitive class?

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week