Fleet News

SEAT Alhambra TDI 115 SE - 6,806 miles



COMETH the hour, cometh the van, or cometh the SEAT Alhambra to be more precise.

This seven-seater MPV may have a hard ride, and is far from the quietest car on the Fleet News' test fleet, but it is head and shoulders above the rest for flexibility.

A long weekend in Northumberland saw the Alhambra swallow new baby (and all the cubic metres of buggies, travel cots and infant paraphernalia that accompanies his every move), grandparents, and my wife and I, without the slightest whiff of the old 'sardines' game.

The rear-most pair of seats are heavy and awkward to remove, and without a garage we would have to leave them in the kitchen or lounge, but simply folding them down generates phenomenal boot volume.

Add into the bargain an average fuel economy performance of 45mpg on the 240-mile trek up the A1, and it's nit-picking to find faults with the SEAT.

Personally, I would compromise the sporty suspension setting of the Alhambra to generate a softer ride because I'm never going to hare round corners in such a high-sided vehicle, and I'd settle for the tinted windows and alloy wheels to add a dash of sportiness to the car.

But the TDI engine would still be my engine of choice, and with six gears and ample torque, it pulls up long motorway inclines with full-lunged ease, even when laden. In fact, the only real problem with the Alhambra is the demand for it here at Fleet Towers.

No sooner did I return from my mini-break than another colleague wanted the car for a holiday, then someone else for a house move, and so it goes on. If this is your company car, be prepared to be pestered by colleagues eager to share in the flexibility of your car.

CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.

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