If this Leon eHybrid looks to you like a perfectly agreeable, smart and modern family hatchback, perhaps you won’t be surprised or disappointed by a driving experience to match that billing. For the potentially large fuel and tax savings it affords, for the respectable way it conducts itself on the road and for its fairly spacious cabin and appealing in-car tech, this car covers plenty of bases – and covers them well.

Trouble is, it does so without much of the pep or spirit that was always detectable in its predecessor. Sure, the Leon is still a handsome car, but somehow it looks more derivative than its characterful, edgy forebear. Dynamically, it conducts itself pretty blamelessly, but there’s little about the way it drives that captures your attention. And although that hybrid powertrain is fairly swift and efficient, neither peppy performance nor polished refinement is ultimately a calling card for it.

Competent and efficient but verges on being forgettable to drive

This is a very respectable plug-in hybrid hatchback and it’s easy to recommend, but mere competency can take it only so far. What is undoubtedly a good Leon won’t be a car that interested drivers seek out in the way they might the very best PHEVs.

What Car? New car buyer marketplace - Seat Leon