The Leon has been a cornerstone of the Seat range since 1999, accumulating more than 2.2 million sales globally across three generations of the model. Now, there is a new Leon due here in May, and Seat says it is the latest vehicle in this lineage, adding connectivity, electrified powertrains and automated safety systems.
The Leon remains a core model for the brand in the Irish market. Since the first Leon was sold in Ireland in 2000, some 13,300 Leons have been sold in Ireland from the first three generations.
The hatch and estate sector of the market is increasingly competitive with new entrants and a move towards larger vehicles. However, Seat boasts the new Leon, with a strong design evolution, greater practicality, connectivity and efficient, electrified powertrains, meets the challenge.
It adds that in an increasing connected world, the next-generation Leon gives occupants greater opportunity to take their digital lives with them. The new Leon is the brand’s first fully-connected vehicle. In the car, Full Link offers seamless Android Auto and wireless Apple CarPlay connections. Away from the vehicle, users can access their vehicle’s data remotely via Seat Connect, as well as manage the battery charging and control the electronic air conditioning in the plug-in hybrid models only.
The VW Group owned Spanish carmaker says the new Leon also features Car2X connectivity – a cloud-based technology that enables drivers to receive advanced warning on the status of upcoming traffic lights, an incident on a motorway further up the road, or whether traffic lights are about to turn from green to red, with traffic information appearing in real time on screen.
It adds that a suite of new powertrain technologies; petrol (TSI ), diesel (TDI ), mild-hybrid (eTSI ), and plug-in hybrid (eHybrid ) means consumers can choose the vehicle that most closely matches their lifestyle and needs, while at the same time providing the efficiency and performance.
Seat claims safety is at the heart of the new Leon. The MQB (Modular Quer Baukasten ) Evo architecture provides an inherently strong and stiff safety cell and allows the integration of some of the most advanced driver assistance systems available, including predictive adaptive cruise control and emergency assist 3.0, to make it the safest car that Seat has made to date.
Seat’s press people say with an exterior design that exudes confidence, elegance and sportiness, the new Leon benefits from an evolutionary approach that enhances the volume and proportions of the vehicle, but remains coherent to its predecessor.
The basis for the vehicle’s overall volume is the advanced MQB Evo platform, which provided the flexibility the design team required. The Leon’s increased wheelbase translates to a claimed 49mm extra legroom for rear occupants (now 1,799mm ), and length for both the five-door and the estate improved the vehicle’s sense of proportion. It also gets more headroom for passengers despite a lower roofline than the outgoing model.
Six trim levels – the SE, SE Dynamic, FR, FR Sport, Xcellence, and Xcellence Lux - should be available to choose from when it goes on sale here. It entered production this month (January ) so more details on prices and the Irish specifications closer to the Irish launch in May.