The SEAT Arona is yet another comer to the B-Segment SUV market. This over saturated segment includes competition like the Peugeot 2008, Renault Captur and Mazda CX-3. With the SE 1.0TSI 115hp set to be the biggest seller, the Arona is also available with a 1.6TDI and 1.5TSI. Prices start from €17,995.
From launch, a 3-cylinder petrol and 4-cylinder diesel are available. Power outputs are 95hp and 115hp for the 1.0TSI and 95hp for the 1.6TDI. A 1.5TSI will be available in 2018 with 150hp, exclusively for the FR trim level. We drove the 1.0TSI 115hp at the Irish launch and felt that the power was sufficient. Drivability is comparable to the SEAT Ibiza, as is the size. The Arona is built on the Ibiza platform and is available in S, SE, Xcellence and FR trim levels.
The Arona is built on the Ibiza platform so is similar to that of the city car. The B-Segment SUV handled well around our test route of country roads and lanes. The front-wheel drivetrain coped well with the muddy roads. The 115hp 1.0TSI felt sufficient and the 6-speed manual suited to the car. A 7-speed DSG is available on both the petrol and diesel. Body roll is noticeable but is to be expected from the soft raiding crossover.
The distinctive 3-cylinder petrol can be heard throughout the cabin when pushed hard. As standard on SE trim, the 16” alloys provide a comfortable ride. Equipping larger alloys will, in theory, increase road noise.
The interior’s dash layout is similar to the Ibiza. The shiny plastic insert stretching across the centre is plucked out of the Ibiza. Incorporated into this is an infotainment system with a typical SEAT look to it, but not so similar to Volkswagen or Skoda. The overall quality of the plastics are average for this segment.
Standard on S trim, the most basic trim, is Front Assist, Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Front Airbags, Curtain Airbags and Side Airbag, Hill Start Assist, 2 Rear ISOFIX Seats and Auto Lights. Jumping to SE, Xcellence or FR adds Tiredness Recognition and Cruise Control.
The Arona’s boot equates to 400 litres, 45l more than the Ibiza. The boot floor can be lowered to make it deeper. It is not hugely impressive and getting the likes of a buggy in will be done with a struggle. The rear doors have decent door bins, as do the ones up front. The centre console has two decent sized cupholders and the glovebox is of average size.