Go-faster fleet drivers are expected to play a big part in plans to drive Seat to another record year for sales in Britain.
Officials at the manufacturer think rising demand for corporate transport with added kerbside appeal will lead to extra business in the sector with the latest versions of the Leon hatchback.
“Our sales performance has shown a massive improvement since the Leon five-door range was launched in March and there’s no doubt this has contributed to a new perception of the brand,” Seat UK product marketing manager Jo Elliott told Fleet News.
“As a result, our position in fleet is changing, but we are still keen to improve our performance with corporate clients and increase the strength of our offering to move us further forward.
“Our research has identified a significant number of fleet drivers who favour cars that have more overtly sporty styling, so we think the new Leon SC should be well received, particularly with user-choosers.”
Expected to account for around 10% of Leon registrations, the SC sits on a shorter wheelbase than the five-door.
It also stands slightly lower and, with a more sloping tailgate, it has a squat and sporty appearance.
Reduced body length results in a 35mm loss of legroom for rear passengers, but seat accommodation remains adequate and a neat slide-and-tilt arrangement on the front seats helps ease access.
Significantly, the sporty packaging has little impact on practicality with boot space unchanged at 380 litres and maximum load volume with the rear seatbacks folded is only 60 litres less at 1,150 litres.
Trim grades and specification mirror the five-door and the most popular fleet choice is expected to be the 1.6-litre TDI, but Seat’s recipe for hot hatch progress is at its best in the ultimate SC, the FR 184.
With its parent company’s latest high-output 2.0-litre turbodiesel under the bonnet, this is a zingy alternative to the Golf GTD in a Spanish suit.
Ticking all the boxes for enthusiastic drivers, it has ample power to send the car surging in all ratios but lowered suspension, helped by a multi-link layout at the rear, keeps everything in check without impairing ride comfort.
“We think this is a stunning car that looks sexy but has all the economy and practicality of the five-door. And at £300 less, the price is also right,” said Elliott.