'The look of our new car puts the emphasis on sporting performance. It is proud and confident - and we think it will lead to a positive response from the user-chooser sector. By the end of next year, the same theme will be reflected in the substantial revamp which will be given to the Ibiza and Cordoba ranges. Toledo signals the start of a bold new era,' Rose said.
He said the new-look SEAT models would reach Britain with marketing which would also be substantially revised. 'In the past, our brand has been all about value. Now value is accepted as an essential ingredient of any car - it's time for us to be more positive. Our current Toledo is priced from £13,500. It is not our intention to be too much above that level, and at around £14,000 with substantially improved standard equipment, the new car should be even higher value.'
Rose said GM, Renault, Citroen and Rover had been singled out as prime competitors for 1.6 and 1.8-litre versions of the Belgium-built five-seater saloon, but at around £17,000, the upscale 2.3-litre, V5 could compete with BMW as well as the Vectra.