Release your inner bullfighter
The heat and sound of the waves, sipping cocktails under the palm trees – it was a great summer, wasn’t it?! With its slogan “Born in the sun”, the SEAT Leon was a total revelation in the summer of 2020. On the forecourts at the same time as its cousins the Golf 8 and Audi A3, the 4th generation SEAT Leon has had it with being an outsider.
Since 1999, this Spanish compact has done plenty of growing up. And SEAT has done its homework for this new generation. This model is longer – by some 10 centimetres – and comes with sleek lines: long, flat bonnet, curved roof and sculpted sides. The Spanish company is offering customers a totally new look for the LEON, reminiscent of the silhouette of the Ford Fiesta.
The front lights continue from the marque’s recent SUVs, but one of the Leon’s original features is to the rear, with triangular lights linked by a narrow illuminated strip. Another is the original “hand-written” model name, adding a touch of extra summer cachet to the vehicle.
Technology at the forefront
At SEAT, the Leon is ahead of the pack when it comes to technology. 1 billion euros have been invested in this project to ensure that the 4th generation is revolutionary. So, apart from being the most advanced in technology terms, the Leon is also marque’s safest car.
The interior is relatively understated, with some areas finished in aluminium. A lot of attention has been paid to multimedia features, including modulable displays. The 10-inch touchscreen is divided into 3 sections. Just swipe your finger across it and information appears, giving you a totally personal interface. Because it’s different from competitors’ touchscreens, the new SEAT interface takes a little time to adapt to, and the many functions don’t make it easy! On the other hand, the touchscreen is responsive and fluid, which is very nice. Physical buttons have disappeared in favour of 100% touch buttons. This is increasingly common, and comes with its own pros and cons. It’s really handy for turning the light on and off and browsing the central screen. But we would have preferred real buttons for the air conditioning, heating and sound volume. Access isn’t direct and you have to go through several procedures to adjust temperature and ventilation.
Under the bonnet
The SEAT Leon offers a range of different engines: petrol, diesel, mild hybrid and even rechargeable hybrid and natural gas versions are available. With a manual or automatic gearbox, the model offers various combinations, all of them bound to please.
The 4-cylinder 1.5l petrol eTSI with automatic gearbox is a nice drive, with perfect road-holding. The chassis and shock-absorbers are sound. The precise steering lets you put your car exactly where you want it. Although the ride is quite hard, the Leon still has a good level of comfort. It’s a very good all-rounder and a just little sporty with 150 horsepower under the bonnet, which most people will be happy with for daily use.
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Image source: ACL
Text source: ACL