Subtle changes to the SEAT Ibiza in 2015 keep it competitive, just.
The Spanish cousin of the Volkswagen Polo is an established supermini contender, only it’s getting a bit old now, it bettered by not just that admittedly more expensive Volkswagen, but its Skoda Fabia relative, too. Not quite an also-ran, but certainly not as appealing as it once was, despite a recent update.
What is it?
SEAT’s supermini, the Ibiza, is manufactured on the same underpinnings as the Volkswagen Polo and borrows from Volkswagen’s engine line-up, too. It’s a trick SEAT’s good at, and the Ibiza remains appealing, despite its advancing years. It’s fun to drive, good to look at and nicely finished inside, while its recent refresh added touch-screen connectivity that’s fast becoming the class norm. It also signalled the arrival of some new engines, giving the Ibiza improved economy and emissions in three- and five-door forms.
What is it like?
The volume sales will be in the S and SE trims, which limits your choice to a pair of engines, a 1.4 TDI and 1.0-litre petrol. Both have 75hp, and while the diesel’s the economy champion, the petrol doesn’t trail it so much that you’ll feel inclined to spend the sizeable premium on that diesel. With its engaging chassis it makes good use of the petrol engine’s limited power, the steering sharp enough, the suspension giving good control and riding well, too.
Carzone verdict: 3.5/5
The five-door hatchback (there’s a three-door ‘SC’ version too) starts at €14,295 in S form, but it’s worth spending a bit more on the SE for its gains in economy and emissions. It also has a more comprehensive standard equipment list. Much as we’d like an FR, with its sharper road manners and more comprehensive engine line-up, those SEs make the most sense to the majority of buyers. It’s worth optioning the inexpensive SEAT Full Link where available, as it allows full integration with your phone’s functionality. A good supermini.