The new Seat Leon: Better to move than to move

Barcelona – It started 21 years ago – that was when Seat offered the Leon for the first time. The VW subsidiary did not regret this step because the product became better and more successful with each new generation. The third generation in particular made the breakthrough, especially since, like many other brands from the Volkswagen Group, it was allowed to use the flexible and high-quality modular transverse modular system. This Leon, which was built in 2012, made a significant contribution to the recovery of the Seat brand, which had suffered long-term losses, alongside the traditional Ibiza and the very fresh SUV fleet. The Leon was also granted the chance to stand out above all through the design language of technically almost identical competitors (VW Golf, Audi A3 and Škoda Octavia), the management (and the responsible design team) preferred a dynamic appearance.

Seat continues to follow this path with generation four – although those responsible were allowed to claim more everyday benefits in the overall vehicle development. In particular, an increase in the space available was considered to be extremely desirable.

Technology leap in the interior

This is exactly what future Leon buyers can expect, because both the hatchback sedan and the station wagon are growing, at least in terms of longitudinal expansion. The five-door car gains 86 millimeters and measures 4,368 millimeters from front to rear. The ST grows by 93 to 4642 millimeters. In both vehicles, the wheelbase increases by five centimeters to 2686 millimeters – this will probably also have a positive impact on driving comfort. Incidentally, the newcomers are less tall and less wide than their direct predecessors; at the same time, the load space in the smaller five-door vehicle remains practically unchanged at 380 liters, with the long tail there are even 30 liters more than before at 620 liters.

The technological leap in the interior is massive. With the new Leon, fully digital instruments and generously dimensioned touchscreens with modern menu guidance and contemporary infotainment system solutions move in. Even when using driver assistance systems, the Leon goes to a higher level, as documented, among other things, by a parking assistant and an intelligent cruise control with predictive cruise control.

What else the new MQB Evo base offers are alternative drives: with the fourth-generation Leon, there will also be plug-in hybrids and various mild hybrid variants in the compact car class in addition to ordinary combustion engines. The use of a natural gas engine is also envisaged, even if the VW Group wants to say goodbye to methane-burning vehicles in the medium term.

Seat expects the market launch of the new Leon generation, originally planned for April, in Austria in May or June, the base price should be less than 19,000 euros. (posh)

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