Are you a form-over-function person, or do you incline more towards substance than style?
If the former, there is nothing in this test of the new Seat Toledo that could possibly be of interest to you. If the latter, step this way: we have something to share.
The Seat Toledo is sensible to the point of making Hermione Granger seem louche. About as visually interesting as the inside of your eyelids, it is the automotive equivalent of a Bosch dishwasher: well made, utterly functional and entirely devoid of character. It takes the notion of quality white goods for the road and re-invents it on a level shared only by its badge-engineered sister, the Skoda Rapid. Although having said that the Rapid Spaceback offers a modicum of style.
A hatchback cleverly concealed behind a conventional three-box design, it's based on an extended Volkswagen Polo platform. There was previously three 1.2-litre petrol specifications, with the least powerful having just three cylinders and mustering a mere 74bhp, appearing to exist only to allow Seat a sub-£12,500 entry point to the range. A facelift put pay to this approach and subsquently there is now only one 1.2-litre petrol in 108bhp four-cylinder form and the price point for the Toledo range is now north of £17,500.
The entry-level engine to the range comes in the shape of a 1.4-litre TDI equipped with 89bhp, but for most, the 1.6-litre diesel is probably the preferable choice. It has a bit more power than the 1.2-litre petrol with its 113bhp, but vastly more torque and, at 72.4mpg combined, truly impressive fuel consumption. Performance is good on paper (0-62mph in 10.4sec) and even better on the road thanks to the wide powerband's ability to mask gaps between the five-speed manual gearbox's ratios.