Seat Altea

2004 saw the arrival of the SEAT Altea. Initially released with a 1.6 and 2.0-litre TSI petrol engine, SEAT later added a 2.0-litre TDI diesel engine, definitely the most powerful in the range. 2007 saw the Altea XL hit the scene, offering 2.0-litre TSI petrol and TDI diesel engines. But it wasn't until the 2009 face-lift, that the SEAT Altea refreshed the range and brought out the 1.4 and 1.6-litre models. The petrol versions were nothing special, but the 1.6-litre TDI model hit all the right buttons. A smooth ride, it retained the punchiness of the 2.0-litre diesel but added the economy level that would make this the most desirable of the range. Delivering 60mpg, it is twice as economical as the 2.0 engine and delivers a quiet, comfortable ride.

Economical Family Cars

This engine was pricy though, and that is the one thing that held it back. But now that pricing is no longer an issue, making the Altea a great choice for a spacious, family car, especially the later models. Given that a new car depreciates by 20% in the first year, and 10% each subsequent year until it reaches 50% of its value, a 2016 SEAT Altea could deliver a real bargain at 40% less, and your insurance on a used car is likely to be lower. The automatic transmissions are fine, but if you opt for the manual version, you will have yourself a reliable, affordable, and economical family car, that should serve you well. Inside, there is plenty of headroom and legroom, and with sliding rear seats, 5 people will have a comfortable ride in the Altea.

Multi Sports Vehicle

SEAT branded the Altea as an MSV or Multi Sports Vehicle, but given that production ceased in 2016, the cheaper, depreciated price, coupled with the economy and spaciousness in the face-lifted models, makes it a great option if you're in the market for an MPV. The driving seat is high-set and offers great visibility, and although it has the height of an MPV, it corners remarkably well. With SEAT's dynamic steering response, the Altea responds well to road conditions, and it is easy to forget that you're driving a family car. With its sporty look and excellent handling, the low profile Altea feels nice and certainly has some power to back up the sporty look.

Who is the SEAT Altea for?

Although SEAT labeled the Altea as an MSV, it fits perfectly into the cheap MPV category. It boasts all the features you would expect in a family car, and with its sporty appearance it holds it's own on the road with other cars in this range. Perfect as a family car, if you have a keen eye for a bargain, you should find something in your price range that will fulfill your needs. Go for a 2009 or later version, with a newer engine, and you should end up with a long-lasting, economical MPV that all the family will appreciate.