Seat’s fleet performance has improved in the past two years since it gained its first two SUVs – the Ateca and Arona. In February, the line-up will be complete with the all-new Tarraco.
Based on an extended MQB production platform, and built at VW Group’s Wolfsburg plant in Germany alongside the Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace, Tarraco is Seat’s largest SUV and has seven seats as standard in the UK.
Like most rivals in this sub-segment, Tarraco is aimed at drivers who’ll only occasionally need to use the rearmost seats, so the Seat Alhambra, its MPV, will be protected. Seat says there is no intention for Tarraco to be its sole seven-seater.
Tarraco’s arrival means Seat now has vehicles in 80% of the new car market’s segments. It’s an important flagship, and is the first model to adopt a new design language at the company, distinguished from older Seat models by a more prominent grille, sunken headlamps and a full width rear light.
More will become evident in the new Leon, which will be revealed at Geneva Motor Show in March.
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There will be four-wheel drive models, offered only with 190PS 2.0-litre engines in petrol or diesel form. However, demand is predicted to be low.
Strongest demand is expected for models with front-wheel drive and 150PS engines, either a 2.0-litre diesel or 1.5-litre petrol, due to the better fuel efficiency and lower price. The 2.0 TDI 150PS can achieve 58mpg and 129g/km CO2, and the 1.5 TSI 42.8mpg and 152g/km.
Company car tax will be around £150 per month for the 150PS diesel in fleet-friendly SE Technology trim. The Peugeot 5008 is around £20 per month cheaper due to its 109g/km CO2 emissions.
Unlike the great-handling Ateca, Tarraco puts emphasis on comfort over sportiness. Seat has no plans to offer a high-performance Cupra Tarraco, unlike the Ateca, but an assertively-styled Tarraco FR may be added if demand is there.
And the carmaker has confirmed it will launch a plug-in hybrid Tarraco in 2020, which will have an expected range of 30 miles in pure electric mode.
In 2018, Seat UK announced its ‘Easy Move’ strategy to simplify choice by making the most popular optional extras standard fit. For Tarraco, that means four trim levels at launch: SE, SE Technology, Xcellence and Xcellence Lux.
Metallic paint is part of the standard spec, along with three-zone climate control, rear parking sensors, Full Link smartphone integration, electric parking brake and 17-inch alloy wheels.
SE Technology adds sat-nav, tinted windows and 18-inch wheels.
Xcellence adds a wireless phone charger, adaptive cruise control, electric tailgate, rear view camera, 19-inch wheels and Alcantara upholstery, while Xcellence Lux adds more premium-car features such as leather upholstery, 20-inch wheels, a top view 360-degree parking camera and a winter pack with heated front and rear seats and headlight washers.
Tarraco is priced and equipped to compete strongly with segment rivals.
To compare the Tarraco with rivals such as the Nissan X-Trail or Hyundai Santa-Fe, go to fleetnews.co.uk/cars/