Review

SEAT Ibiza hatchback

The SEAT Ibiza shares many parts with the Volkswagen Polo and the Skoda Fabia. Of the three, the Ibiza's image is more likely to appeal to younger drivers, but it still shares the solid build quality of the VW and Skoda. Other rivals include the Peugeot 208, Hyundai i20 and Kia Rio, but the most competent competition comes in the form of the fun-to-drive Ford Fiesta.

Because SEAT is owned by Volkswagen, the Ibiza has access to VW's excellent range of small petrol and diesel engines. The 1.2-litre TFSI petrol is nippy, while the 1.4-litre TFSI delivers startling economy for a quick petrol engine. The diesel engines are the most frugal of all and the 1.2-litre can deliver more than 80mpg, while the 1.6-litre gives a good balance between economy and performance.

There are eight trim levels to choose from: S A/C, SE, Toca, I-TECH, 30 yrs, FR, FR Ed, and Cupra. Even on the basic model equipment levels are impressive and include air-conditioning, front electric windows, remote central locking, and a CD player with an AUX-in plug. Buyers can also choose between three and five doors, and there's also an ST estate version, which we have tested separately.

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