On the outset, the Seat Leon doesn't seem to know its place in the market. There’s the Audi at the top end and the Volkswagen in the middle, but it’s still confusing as to where the Seat hopes to settle itself within the VW hierarchy. The Leon model, in particular, makes this a more difficult mystery to solve. Although the Seat is the Volkswagen’s sporting brand, it still has a long way to go in terms of keeping up with its credentials and competitors. This review will look into how the Leon fares in the market and in achieving the Seat’s image in the said hierarchy.
The Leon is a good-looking car and comes in three ranges: the Altea XL, Altea, and the Leon. Each variation has its own distinguishing features, differentiated particularly through size. There’s also the Cupra R model that has polished black pillars and tinted rear windows so that the window line does not appear unbroken. The Cupra also features 19-inch alloys, distinct bodywork on its front, rear, and twin centre rear exhausts, and black door mirror casings. All these elements make the Cupra the Leon’s best competitor in Seat’s motorsport campaign.
The interior impresses by not just doing what’s expected of the vehicle, but also executing each function quite well. The cabin is spacious enough to accommodate four six-foot tall individuals, while the rear seat can be split or folded according to how much seats are needed. The driver can find his position accordingly thanks to the height adjustable seat. The driving position is also ideal and the telescopic steering column within easy reach. The cabin also makes use of high quality interior plastics as well as textured swathes.
The Leon also boasts of stellar performance. The 1.2 TSI engine drives smoothly and lightly on the road; plus you don’t have to worry about aural feedback. This engine also feels light compared to the larger options within the Leon’s diesel range.T 1.4 TSI engine comes highly recommended as it can work at a power lower than 4800rpm and it can rev more than 5600rpm. The vehicle also delivers decent performance through the 1.6 TDI, but it's best to go for the 1.4 and 1.2 TSI as it requires less pressure when going on full throttle. The 2.0 TSI is also quite powerful as the 258lb ft torque provides more than enough urgency even when pushing at low revs.
Ride and handling is another great feature of the Seat Leon. It performs as well as the Golf, able to corner through different bends with the right assurance. Good grip remains consistent throughout any weather, providing a ride that more expensive models would provide against the Leon’s more affordable rates.
Despite the Leon’s different models, the model is only available in five doors. The rear door tends to sink into the rear three-quarter windows, making it look almost like a coupe in its profile. This is the only downside we see to the vehicle, considering how well design and main features come together to deliver a comfortable, reliable, and smooth drive for both passengers and drivers.
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