SEAT Ibiza 1.0 TSI

Xcellence

SEAT Ibiza, front
SEAT Ibiza, dynamic
SEAT Ibiza, profile
SEAT Ibiza, rear quarter
SEAT Ibiza, front quarter
SEAT Ibiza, interior
SEAT Ibiza, interior

SEAT'S Ibiza has always had a reputation as a good quality, affordable and fun to drive supermini and this year saw the fifth generation model launched.

The latest version boasts some sharp styling. It's instantly recognisable as a SEAT, sharing some of the design language of its larger stablemates. It certainly stands out in the supermini segment.

The Barcelona-based car maker says the latest Ibiza is the culmination of a design journey that started in 2012 and believe it to be the best looking supermini it has ever produced.

It might sound like a bold claim but the Ibiza won a highly coveted Red Dot Award earlier this year, which is the design equivalent of an Oscar.

The Ibiza was also declared What Car? Best Small Car of 2018.

Based on Volkswagen Group's MQB AO platform the Ibiza benefits from being quite a decent size.

It looks like a big supermini and feels like one too, with the kind of cabin space one might have expected in a family hatchback not that many years ago. As well as plenty of room for rear seat passengers it also offers 355 litres of boot space.

On the inside there's a quality feel to the cabin with the latest technology very much to the fore.

The big car character continues when you sit in the driver's seat, with a distinct sense of being in something far larger. Again the slick and sophisticated look of the technology on this range-topping Xcellence model reinforces that.

There's a wide selection of trim levels - S, SE, SE Technology, FR and Xcellence.

All cars offer a touchscreen infotainment system, though there are different levels of sophistication.

An entry-level S model features a 5in black and white set-up.

Step-up to an SE and you get full colour, while moving further up the range SE Technology, FR and Xcellence models have a more user-friendly and clearer 8in screen and you'll also get a built-in sat nav.

These higher trim levels also come with DAB radio and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to allow you to fully connect your smartphone.

There's a decent choice of engines for the Ibiza, though I expect most buyers will opt for a version of the three-cylinder petrol unit.

There's a 74bhp naturally aspirated version, which has its limitations but the pick of the bunch is a 94bhp TSI fitted to this car, which offers the benefits of turbocharging and does a good job of powering the Ibiza along at a decent pace.

There's a more powerful 113bhp version if you want a little more oomph, or an altogether more capable petrol contender in the shape of a 148bhp 1.5-litre and two variants of a 1.6 TDI diesel delivering either 79bhp or 94bhp.

The Ibiza rides smoothly and again feels more composed than one might imagine a supermini would.

In terms of handling it delivers a decent drive, taking corners well and feels agile and assured whatever the road setting.

The Ibiza also scores highly for safety, particularly with the array of electronic aids on offer.

FAST FACTS

SEAT Ibiza 1.0 TSI Xcellence

Price: £18,245

Mechanical: 94bhp, 999cc, 3cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via 5-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 113mph

0-62mph: 10.9 seconds

Combined MPG: 60.1

Insurance Group: 12

C02 emissions: 106g/km

Bik rating: 22%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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