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Ibiza is very lovely. Lots of sun, lots of beaches, lots of holiday. Delicious.

But does the Seat Ibiza follow suit? Seat are part spanish, and part german, and so call themselves ‘passionate perfectionists’. Are they passionate? I’m assuming the back seats don’t come pre-christened, so we’ll gloss over that one. But perfectionists? No. The Ibiza isn’t perfect, but what car is?

 

The old Ibizas of days gone by have gone from static and square to rounded and curvy, but this one brings the best of both worlds with a rounded yet angular design. More lines make it look sporty and bang up to date. And I love the fog lights!

Sitting in the car immediately gives you a sense of quality – Seat’s seats make this the most comfortable car I’ve ever sat in… In the front that is. If you’re over 5 foot 5 and you sit in the back, you’d better hope the driver doesn’t go over any speed bumps, otherwise you’ll be losing your neck.

 

The driving position is excellent – everything is within reach of the driver, and not obstructed by anything. Gear changes are an ease, and car visibility is spot-on. The stereo system lets the car down a bit though – as standard, the car comes with a stereo that we’ve seen in cars for years gone by, which doesn’t offer any bluetooth connectivity until you add-on what appears to be a sat-nav.

It’s a little fiddly, but it acts as a touch screen control for the car allowing you to stream music from your phone, control the radio, and everything you’d expect from a sat nav. The voice control is nice, but you may as well use your hands, because by the time you’ve repeated your original statement five times, you’ve already arrived at your destination.

However, sticking out like a sore thumb like with any other sat nav, is that you feel obliged to remove it every single time you leave your car less anyone break in and nick it. This would get tiring, and when you consider that competitors like the Toyota Aygo have very appealing touch screens that are built into the centre console, and this optional extra totals many hundreds of pounds, this is a little disappointing.

On the road, the Ibiza performs well. It’s not blisteringly fast, but even the 1.4 85bhp engine pulls well from pretty much anywhere in the rev range. Handling is fairly sharp with a little body roll, but this was never meant to be a sports car (there’s the FR version for that). It’s meant to be a cool hatchback that can be used every day, so Seat have made it incredibly comfortable, ironing out bumps in the road like DMU Rowing Club did its competition in the last varsity.

A nice touch is the hill-start braking system: pull up on a hill and when you’re ready to start off again, you’ve got three seconds of automatic foot-brake to get your

accelerator and clutch sorted, then when you pull away, when the brakes automatically disengage. This stops you from rolling back into the car behind you, which is really useful. Just make sure you don’t get used to this feature, then drive a car that doesn’t have the system, otherwise good-bye no claims discount.

Overall, not a bad little car then, and since some of its competitors like the Ford Fiesta and VW Polo are doing so much better, you’ll be able to haggle more of a discount at the dealership. This means you’ll get far more car for your money, and who doesn’t want that?

Too long; didn’t read: Good car. Good value. If you desire sporty-ness, maybe this isn’t the car for you. That said, if you want a simple car that’ll be reliable, have a decent amont of space, and won’t break the bank, look no further – take a seat in the Seat Ibiza.

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Posted by Paul Blackmore

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