SEAT Leon 2.0 TDI FR - Welcome

  • SEAT’s new Leon joins the Parkers long term fleet
  • Hours spent poring over specs pays off
  • Our 2.0-litre TDI FR cost £23,560 including options

When you reach adulthood there are few sensations that can match the anticipation and excitement experienced as a child on Christmas eve, waiting to unwrap that shiny new bike or introduce Ken to his new playmate Barbie.

But there is one that comes close; poring over the specification sheets, reading the reviews and first drives, spending hours on the manufacturer’s online configurator and choosing your brand new car. It’s an important part of the process for any new car buyer – get it right and you’ll be forever delighted with your drive but miss the target and chances are you’ll forever rue the day you signed the order form.

Thankfully, in the case of our new SEAT Leon longtermer, it appears we’ve hit the bullseye.

I have to admit I had a bit of a headstart when it came to deciding on the final specification of our car – not only did I have the benefit of the Parkers SEAT Leon review to help with my choice, but I’d run a previous generation Leon long term test car for another outlet.

Thanks to my 120-mile a day commute the choice of 2.0-litre 148bhp diesel engine was a simple one. Officially this engine can achieve 68.9mpg, and were we keeping the car long enough to pay annual road tax its 106g/km CO2 emissions would mean a VED of only £20.

Seat Leon 2.0 TDI FR

Time will tell just how close we come to that economy figure, but going by previous experience on the launch of this car somewhere above 50mpg should be attainable. We certainly think it’s the sweet-spot of the engine range, offering the correct balance of performance and efficiency.

And though the Leon comes well equipped even in base S form making the decision to opt for sporty FR trim was an even easier task. Despite my greying hair there’s a part of me that that wants to hold onto as much of my youth as possible; the FR’s 17-inch alloy wheels, LED rear lamps, front foglights and twin exhaust pipes are just racy enough for my lifestyle.

SEAT Leon 2.0 TDI FR

It also comes with dual-zone climate control, front and rear parking sensors, tinted rear windows, sports seats, cruise control, perforated leather sports steering wheel, Bluetooth, USB input and an eight-speaker stereo system. Add to that the security of seven airbags, hill hold control, the firm’s XDS differential to improve handling and SEAT’s Drive Profile.

The latter allows the driver to select from Sport, Comfort, Eco and Individual modes for the engine and steering response. Hopefully it’ll make our Leon something of a master of all trades and will be adaptable enough to find favour with the rest of the Parkers team.

So without any options that means our car would cost a very reasonable £21,385 – which taking the performance, economy and equipment into account sounds like a whole lot of car for the money.

SEAT Leon 2.0 TDI FR

But just like a kid writing his wish list to Santa, we couldn’t resist personalising our example with a few choice options. The good news is that SEAT’s list is all reasonably priced.

Famed for its bright colour palette SEAT’s new Leon paint choice is rather more sober, so we chose the £475 metallic Nevada White and complimented this with the sharp 18-inch Performance rims (£350).

And as we got in early we benefitted from the firm’s launch offer – where the Technology pack was priced at an incredibly low £500. This adds full LED headlamps, which look great, sat-nav and a DAB radio. We also added the £115 Safety Pack (tiredness recognition system and rear seatbelt reminder), £220 SEAT Sound System (Ten speakers including a subwoofer) and Alcantara Sports seats at £440.

SEAT Leon 2.0 TDI FR

Cans of get-me-home foam for flat tyres have never impressed me so we ousted the aerosol and fitted a space saver spare in the wheel-well. The extra cost of £75 will seem like money well spent if we ever find ourselves on the hard shoulder with no air in our rubber.

In total our pickings added a rather restrained £2,175 to the original price.

So while it’s still only June, and there's 182 days until Christmas, now that this sharp new SEAT Leon FR has arrived in my life it’s like Christmas day every time I reach for the keys.

If you need help choosing the perfect Leon for your needs, read the full Parkers SEAT Leon review here.