SEAT Alhambra - Used

Car Review

SEAT Alhambra, front, action
SEAT Alhambra, side
SEAT Alhambra, rear
SEAT Alhambra, boot
SEAT Alhambra, interior
SEAT Alhambra, front

IF it's a case of size really does matter and nothing less than seven seats will do, then SEAT's Alhambra should be high up your wish list.

For when it comes to the numbers game, few people carriers can offer the comfort and functionality that this large Spanish belter does.

For this is one seven-seater can actually accommodate seven adults with relative ease, unlike many of its rivals where the back seats are so tiny that even small children feel like they are like sardines squashed into a tin can.

Yes, the individual seats inside the Alhambra are all full sized and thanks to the car's three-zone climate control, those in the back can even set the temperature to suit themselves.

Add to this a fast, no fuss system for folding the seats and you really do have a functional and highly-practical people mover-cum-loadlugger.

In five-seat mode, you'll find a pretty impressive 1,167 litres of space available. Fold all the seats flat and there's 2,297 litres when filled to the roof.

On the outside, unlike many other vehicles of this ilk with their high-sided boxy van-like styling, the designers have given the Alhambra a certain bit of style and flair, with rounded edges throughout and a low crease line on the doors. Sleek roof rails, body-coloured door handles, chrome-trimmed grille and snazzy 17-inch alloy wheels make the total package pretty appealing to the eye.

Getting in and out is a doddle, thanks to the Alhambra's push-button operated sliding rear doors and the large electrically operated tailgate makes life easy when loading heavier items.

Onboard there's plenty of goodies and creature comforts, including a five-inch colour touchscreen sat nav system, cruise control, rear view camera, eight-speaker CD sound system with MP3 compatibility, auto rain-sensing wipers and start/stop system.

Out on the road, the Alhambra offers a smooth and relaxed ride while its road-holding ability is also pretty impressive although, as expected for such a large machine, it does tend to lean a little through tighter corners.

In busy city traffic, the large windows offer great visibility and the car's on-board parking sensors take a bit of the strain away when reversing and parking. One tip for used buyers is to try and find one with Park Assist which basically parks the car by itself.

Another version to look out for is one fitted with a two-litre diesel engine, the Volkswagen group's tried-and-tested workhorse. In 168bhp mode it gives the big MPV a top speed of 127mph with fuel economy figures for the combined cycle set at 47.9mpg.

However, there is also a 115bhp version of the same powerplant which, although not as fiesty, should still be adequate enough for most needs.

Price-wise, you should be looking at paying from around the £10,880 mark to £14,270 for a 2011 11-plate 168bhp two-litre TDI in SE trim with 50,000 miles on the clock, and between £13,345 and £16,735 for a similar 2012 12-plate model with around 40,000 miles.

For those opting for the less-powerful 115bhp version, expect to shave £1,000-plus off the above prices, while settling for an entry-level S trim model will further reduce the price tag by a similar amount.

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