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SEAT Ibiza Ecomotive - the credit crunch car

Lynda Moyo finds the congestion charge compromise in this tax-free runaround

Written by . Published on December 9th 2008.


SEAT Ibiza Ecomotive - the credit crunch car

There's that saying, you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone. And after having the chance to test drive a Seat Ibiza Ecomotive for the weekend, I now know that my car is officially a piece of crap. Not that I didn't know this before, when I've been chugging at 17mph up a 25 degree hill. SEAT describe the Ibiza as for 'restless spirits everywhere.' That'll be me then.

You see I've always fancied myself as a bit of a female Clarkson, minus the controversial opinions on truckers and prostitutes, of course. But in typical stereotypical womanly fashion, I tend to base my car choices on the colour and whether or not there's a sufficient mirror in the sun visor instead of important objectives like horse power and fuel consumption. But I soon learnt there's much more to the SEAT than the pretty exterior and trimmings.

Mine was the SEAT Ibiza 1.4 Ecomotive in black. I was looking forward to driving a new car but when I was told it had a diesel engine, it occurred to me that it could float like a butterfly and sound like a tractor. This however, was far from the case. You see diesel isn't loud like it used to be and the Ecomotive has a Diesel Particulate Filter which filters the soot particles and reduces harmful CO2 emissions. Now if the idea of a clean car equating to a clean conscience doesn't entice you, then maybe this will; the SEAT Ibiza Ecomotive is exempt from tax...forever. This is the key selling point amidst the current congestion charge debate. You will be one expense down.

With all this green talk, you'd expect this car to run like a wheel barrow, but SEAT haven't negated the fact that the point of a car is getting from A to B at a reasonable tempo. The 1.4 engine is most certainly for the driving enthusiast as well as the eco-warrior. It has the power with the robust 1.4 TDI 80PS combined with performance with speeds of up to 109mph. The secret to its success is that SEAT is a wholly owned subsidiary of the German Volkswagen Group. The SEAT Ibiza Ecomotive is the love-child of Penelope Cruz and Albert Einstein. Seductively Spanish on the outside with the internal organs and age-old philosophies of a theoretical, rigorous German.

You can understand why they've called it Ibiza too. Like the Spanish island, many similarities spring to mind. It's for the image conscious youngsters who live life in the fast lane and want guaranteed fun. But then there's that less talked about side of Ibiza; it's also suitable for families and older couples who take a chance and decide to discover it for themselves, in a different way. Amongst Ibiza’s charms is its understated beauty. It's both spacious and safe, friendly and fun, classic and contemporary. It's a one size fits all kind of car.

The claimed 74.3mpg (miles per gallon) hold up is certainly seconded by me. I drove from Manchester to Blackpool and back and the dial barely budged. Cold weather didn't effect the SEAT either with any condensation being cleared up in the blink of an eye. This car has the lust for life of a border collie. It wants to please you, it wants to be worked and it wants to have fun, constantly. Keep throwing that bone.

The SEAT Ibiza is priced at a modest £10,995 and remember this is a tax-free car, a massive saving in itself. For more information about the SEAT Ibiza Ecomotive including features and technical specifications please enter your details into the form below and a SEAT representative will be in contact. Click here to visit the SEAT microsite.

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