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Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0
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PROS

  • Sporty image
  • Affordable running costs
  • Characterful turbocharged petrol engine
  • Neat handling
  • Economical TDI available

CONS

  • Petrol only available with a sequential automatic gearbox

Verdict

Sitting between the standard Ibiza range and the high performance Cupra is the FR model. It has similarly sporty styling to the Cupra with large bumpers and 17-inch alloys, but unlike the quickest model, the FR is available with both three and five doors, making it more practical for family buyers. It's available with the same twin charged 1.4 TSI engine and although power is reduced to 150bhp (compared to 180bhp in the Cupra) it still pulls strongly from low revs. It's good to drive too with stiffened sports suspension and sharp steering, but what may surprise many is the lack of a manual gearbox on the petrol. Instead it only available with a sequential DSG gearbox which isn't quite as enjoyable to use as a manual. However, in 2010 an impressively economical TDI version was added to the line-up which uses a slick six-speed manual gearbox.

What owners say about this car

Couldn't find anything practical about the car the boot couldn't even hold a set of golf clubs let... Read owner review

Boot capacity is generous despite the size of the car. Read owner review

The mpg figures are (amazingly) as advertised - even with spirited driving the fuel consumption is... Read owner review

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