Seat's Altea FR: TDi now, TFSi later
8 May 2006

Seat has launched the FR version of its Altea in the UK. It will be available as a 167bhp diesel only until June, when the petrol version will arrive.

That TFSI petrol will have 197bhp, but the more significant figures may be the engines' torque outputs: 258lb ft for the diesel; 206lb ft for the petrol.

The TDi is priced at £17,795 on the road and has a fair combined cycle figure of 45mpg, with CO2 emissions a low 167 g/km. The Altea's curving shape has been sportified with 17-inch alloys, twin exhausts, altered front and rear bumpers and silver-coloured door mirrors.

Performance figures have not been released, but expect under nine seconds to 60mph and a top speed of over 130mph.

Sports seats, a leather-covered steering wheel and gearknob are the changes to the interior. The specification is fairly high with climate control, six airbags and a particulate filter are the highlights.

Whether the Altea, which looks very similar to its sibling the Leon, can establish itself as a sporting player remains to be seen. There isn't much direct competition for the TDi FR, but the TFSi petrol will face the likes of Ford's Focus ST.

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