Plug-in hybrids have the potential (and we do put an emphasis on that word) for stratospheric fuel economy figures. This isn’t news. But because of their dual power sources, these cars are often also ‘accidentally’ pretty brisk, and the Leon eHybrid is no different.
In the world of quick hatchbacks, the Seat’s combined 201bhp and 258lb ft – courtesy of the 1.4-litre petrol engine and an electric motor that drive through the same six-speed dual-clutch gearbox – place it behind front-drive front-runners such as the VW Golf GTI but not out of sight.
Were it a morsel or two lighter than the eye-opening claimed kerb weight of 1539kg, which is 335kg heavier than the entry-level Leon 1.0 TSI Evo, it would probably break the 7.0sec mark for 0-62mph. As it is, 7.5sec and 235.4mpg are your headline figures – although we should award some credit for this car beating the Mercedes-Benz A250e we weighed earlier this year by more than 100kg.
The car’s 12.8kWh lithium ion battery pack sits beneath the back seats, with the fuel tank having been displaced to below the boot floor. It gives the Leon eHybrid, which also comes in estate form, an official WLTP electric range of between 36 and 40 miles, with just under four hours needed to fully recharge its cells using a wallbox charger.
The charge port itself uses a Type 2 AC connection capable of 3.6kW speeds and lies just behind the offside front wheel, as it does on the Golf eHybrid, which isn’t coming to the UK but donates much of its hardware.