Geneva: 2016 SEAT Ateca

Geneva: 2016 SEAT Ateca

Volkswagen’s Spain-based SEAT division will show its very first crossover at the Geneva Auto Show.

Named after the Spanish town of Ateca, the soft-roader is built on the same modular MQB platform as the Audi TT, the Euro-spec Volkswagen Passat, the Golf, and the second-generation Tiguan, among many others. It borrows styling cues such as sharp headlights accented by thin strips of LEDs, a wide air dam, and a trapezoidal grille from SEAT hatchbacks like the Leon and the Ibiza. Black plastic cladding on the bottom of both bumpers, on the rocker panels, and over the wheel arches add a rugged touch to the look.

Unsurprisingly, the Ateca’s engines are all borrowed from the Volkswagen parts bin. Buyers can choose from five turbocharged engines ranging from a 1.0-liter turbocharged three-cylinder with 113 horsepower to a 2.0-liter TDI turbodiesel tuned to make 187 horsepower. Front-wheel drive and a six-speed manual transmission come standard, and buyers can pay extra for all-wheel drive, a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, or both.

The 2016 SEAT Ateca will go on sale across Europe before the end of the year. Its main rivals will include Nissan’s hot-selling Qashqai, the Mazda CX-3, and the Honda HR-V. In the next couple of years it will be joined by a smaller crossover aimed at the Nissan Juke and a bigger model with three rows of seats.

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