Seat is getting increasingly keen on SUVs, for the very good reason that market predictions indicate European demand for these already popular vehicles will grow by another 25% between now and 2025.
From next February, Seat will have a three-model SUV line-up when its new seven-seat flagship, the Tarraco, joins the small Arona and medium-sized Ateca in showrooms. The move is very likely to boost Seat's UK sales beyond their present record levels and increase the proportion of SUVs in the company’s model line-up from a quarter to a third.
Seats attract markedly young buyers than the other Volkswagen Group brands, and the company’s marketing people are confident that the three-tier SUV range, deliberately styled with more zing than those from the other family brands, will continue to do so.
What does the Tarraco line-up look like?
The Tarraco comes in both front and four-wheel drive guises, starting at £28,320 for a 1.5 TSI 150 SE First Edition and reaching upward to around £40,000 for the top-spec 2.0 TSI 190 Xcellence. Other engine choices are 148bhp and 187bhp versions of a 2.0-litre four-cylinder diesel.
The four-wheel drive system, called 4Drive, is configurable (for use both on and off road) via a twist control on the centre console and incorporates electronic niceties such as hill descent control and roll-over protection. The basic front-wheel-drive model comes with a manual six-speed gearbox, but four-wheel-drive versions use a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox.