Monday 16th July 2012
ALL-NEW SEAT LEON REVEALED
More body styles, new look, higher spec and an all-new platform for third-gen Leon
SEAT has unveiled its new Leon hatchback, the first ground-up design from SEAT for what seems like ages (in fact we reckon you'd have to go all the way back to the Ibiza and 2008 for the last genuinely 'bespoke' SEAT design).
The new Leon is to be officially launched to the public at the Paris motor show in September. It will also be underpinned by VW's new 'MQB' platform family (that's Modularer Querbaukasten or 'modular transverse matrix') that's already serving in the new Audio A3 and will form the basis of the next Golf and Skoda Octavia. As a result of the new platform, the Leon is expected to shed around 85kg in weight from the kerb weight of the current model.
Unlike previous Leons, the new car will also get a variety of body styles, as a lifestyle estate version and a three-door hatch (something that has allegedly been 'forbidden' up until now by parent company VW) will join the initial five-door model soon after launch. As with the current car, Ecomotive, FR and Cupra versions are expected to be available
SEAT is also broadening its model line-up with five petrol engines ranging from 86hp up to 180hp in 1.8-litre FR guise, while four diesel motors will be offered, producing from 90hp for the base 1.6 and up to 184hp and 280lb ft from the 2.0 TDI range-topper. Transmissions will be either five- or six-speed manuals or six-and seven-speed DSGs.
The cabin, meanwhile, has been treated to a more upmarket treatment (says SEAT), as the Spanish manufacturer has targeted improved fit and finish levels and a higher standard of spec, including much in the way of leather and Alcantara on more expensive models.
UK prices and spec are to be announced next year.