One is the state of the market: Seat is rather late to the game, so there are many household names already jockeying for attention and coaxing buyers from their Renault Kadjars, Ford Kugas, Kia Sportages and, yes, Qashqais, and a compelling reason to buy an Ateca is required beyond its sharp looks and shrewd drive.
The other consideration is the positioning of the Tiguan. With it occupying VW’s traditional upmarket place in the mainstream, Seat’s offering – as ever – can be quietly acknowledged as the more affordable understudy.
Thus the Ateca’s four trim levels – S, SE, SE Technology and Xcellence – start at £17,990 and inch beyond £30k by the time you’ve added paint to the range-topping 2.0 TDI.
The entry-level model misses out on the 8.0in touchscreen and Bluetooth so is likely to be ignored, but the as-tested SE trim includes them and adds 17in wheels, cruise control, rear parking sensors and dual-zone climate control into the bargain.
The Technology version incorporates bigger wheels and sat-nav, while Xcellence brings more styling bling.
The 1.6 TDI will underpin the Ateca’s fleet quota, where its failure to replicate the 1.5 dCi Qashqai’s 99g/km (or even 103g/km) will have been noted.
Nevertheless, a 113g/km output still puts it near the head of the field and is easily efficient enough to assuage most buyers as they weigh up its other advantages.
Not least of those is the 50.2mpg that was returned during True MPG testing – a surefire sign that the Ateca’s respectable kerb weight has helped to offset the less friendly aerodynamics of a crossover’s taller profile.
However, if it was our money, we would be inclined to opt for the 2.0 TDI, which would fit the remit of family hauler better than the 1.6-litre diesel could.