Carro Reviews: The Seat Ibiza 1.0 EcoTSI (A)
Spain is famous for her relaxed lifestyle, delicious cuisine, vibrant nightlife, and world-famous folklore and festivities from centuries of history. From Ibiza to Tenerife, the country is rife with cities of diverse communities. Even though the country has made a name for herself in more ways than one, there’s at least one area where she fails to shine – her cars.
But with the recent re-release of the Seat Ibiza, coupled with the launch of the Arona, it could all change in 2018.
Take a look around your carpark and on the roads, it’s hard to find a Seat. The fact of the matter is that Singaporeans have not given the Spanish automakers a shot. And that’s despite the fact that Seat is owned by the Volkswagen Group.
The fifth generation of Seat’s longest running model sees the Ibiza receive some much-needed updates. Which brings the supermini up a couple of notches and makes the Ibiza a solid option.
Handsome & Sharp Looks
The Seat Ibiza isn’t exactly eye-catching. In a sea full of SUVs and Compact SUVs, how can a supermini cut through all that clutter? Despite the lack of dazzle, the Ibiza’s design is excellent compared to other superminis.
The first model to benefit from the Volkswagen Group’s MQB A0 platform, the Ibiza’s design refresh drives the supermini to the top of its class. It’s now wider but shorter than the previous version, adding some much-needed extra space.
The New Ibiza has an aura of sleekness and maturity to it. The way in which light bounces off the body makes it look amazing and gives it an added dimension and dynamism.
The Ibiza follows a sharp and angular theme. On the bonnet, sharp lines accentuate her face and bring your attention to the grilles. Personally, we don’t like how the grille looks because it looks quite cheap-ish.
Although the car might not be sensational to some, we feel that she looks more than good enough to please the average driver.
Efficient & Practical Space
When you think of a supermini, you’d think of an uncomfortable and squeezy ride. And more often than not, that seems to be the case. But here’s where the Seat Ibiza will surprise you. The Ibiza is spacious and offers comfort throughout.
The added spaciousness can be attributed to the updated wheelbase. The Ibiza is now wider and longer which makes the cabin significantly more comfortable. Which also provides passengers with a lot more legroom. So much so that it can feel like you’re in a bigger car, almost like a family car.
The Ibiza comes with superior storage space in the trunk. And that’s despite the fact that there’s little to no storage compartments in the cabin. With foldable seats at the back allowing for more use and even without them, it can hold up to 355 litres.
While you can’t categorize the Ibiza as a premium ride, the car’s overall finish is full of quality. Stepping inside the Ibiza, we were immediately impressed. Everything has a firm and quality feel, even the plastic pieces.
We’re particularly impressed by the infotainment system. The system in the Ibiza can challenge the ones found in other high-end cars. It’s really responsive and easy to use which is praise we can’t give to many others.
The cabin is draped in leather and even though it’s missing some (nice to have) features, we thought that it was intelligently designed.
Quality & Comfortable Drive
So far, the Ibiza has done an excellent job. Both in terms of design and practicality. We’re really enjoying it and would definitely recommend it. But before we can make a proper recommendation, let’s talk about how she drives!
Under the hood, the Ibiza is armed with a 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine that produces 114bhp and 200Nm of torque – which isn’t exactly slow. The supermini clocks an alright 9.5 seconds for a 0-100 sprint. But speed shouldn’t be the be all and end all for the Ibiza. For goodness sake, it’s a supermini and that’s not what you should be looking at…
If you’re in the market for a supermini, other areas of the drive will matter a lot more, especially whether it’s comfortable to drive and easy to handle. So how does the Ibiza score in these aspects?
Compared to the previous version, the Ibiza moves and rides significantly better. Going through long bends and even sharp turns are a breeze. There’s not much body roll and you can feel the sharpness when moving around.
When driving on the highway and through the neighborhood, it was an enjoyable and comfortable ride. It was easy to go through humps, lumps or anything of that sort without much jerking about in the cabin.
If you’re looking for an affordable, functional and overall well-rounded car, the Seat Ibiza is the one for you. We can’t find many faults with this supermini and at a reasonable $86,400 (21 June 2018), you get a lot of bang for your buck. It’s affordable but packed with a host of premium and quality features, offers a comfortable and decent drive and is delightfully designed – you don’t have to think twice.
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