Seat Leon Hatchback (05 - 12) Owner reviews

No longer on sale

I have a 2010 FR CR 170 Diesel, bought April 2014 from a Seat dealer for £10K. Colour: Silver (Luna Grey), I was fine with this but I must admit that it looks better in colours I previously wasn't keen on such as Black, Red and even White. Performance: My previous car I owned for 12 years was 110 BHP so the power of this car is quite dramatic and a year on I am still being careful to not find myself accidentally going too fast as once the turbo kicks in it seriously shifts. Economy: I use the online fuel calculator Fuelly which is reporting 41.5 MPG for my last 10 tankfuls, as I have mentioned above I don't drive like a maniac but obviously neither do I drive like people who report frankly hard to believe figures, I don't do a lot of motorway miles though. Design: The Leon looks very good from the rear and front, the side view of the front not so much. Equipment: I have never been that bothered by knobs and dials but I can't think of anything I would actually use that it doesn't have, I did however change the fairly no-frills standard Audio/CD/MP3 for a combined sat-nav sound system. Interior: Fine especially the back seats folding down with no messing about, I agree about the A Pillar blindspot everyone mentions. Running Costs: I just had the Camshaft belt and water pump changed at the Seat dealer for £498, they have quoted a fixed price £259 for the front discs and pads that need doing. Excellent car.

Dominic Shields, Cardiff, March 28th 2015

16V TDI FR 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs3/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG41.5 mpg

When petrol engines are this good then why get a diesel? 60mpg, £20 VED and 80% of the torque of the 2.0TDI and....0-62 8.0s. This 150bhp engine the 2 cylinder shut off when steady driving (ACT = Active Cylinder Technology) and the transition between 2 & 4 cylinders is seamless. The ride on the standard 17" wheels with 45 profile tyres is firm but comfortable and well controlled - handling is superb The VW Golf Mk 7 cabin is a bit classier but a Golf GT 150TSI specced to the same level would be £305K more expensive. I like the Golf Mk 7 a lot but I think the Seat Leon styling is sharper. The Technology Pack is thrown in and the included LED headlights on beam are awesome.

David Orr, Somerset, December 17th 2014

TSI FR 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

Owned the Leon for 9 months now and overall it's a better car than the last model. It's good in most ways. Doesn't amaze you but usually it's a pleasant car to drive and live with. The engine is very perky and has good low down torque. It needs to be worked hard to deliver its best but it feels quicker than a focus 1.8 I had in 2008. Only when fully loaded with passengers and luggage do I wish for a litt bigger engine. It's most economical on a cruise. I can get 50mpg on a run,mid 40s during general driving and low to mid 30s around town. Overall it averages about 45mpg which is 5 below my previous diesel 1.6. 45 is not bad for a petrol that is this driveable. Handling is good without being a sports car. It's nicely planted on A and B roads and agile in town. Stable on the motorway. The downside is the ride can be a bit firm and jittery over bad surfaces and speed bumps but usually it's not uncomfortable. I do sometimes notice the simple rear suspension over mid corner bumps which affect this car more than my previous Leon though. Practicality is a mixed bag. There's lots of space inside and a reasonable boot but fold the seats and they don't fold flat. The base doesn't move so you have a huge lip. There's also a lip on the entrance to the boot.This made fitting in a tumble drier a pain and some of the polystyrene foam had to be removed to get it to fit. Not impressive. The plastic in front of dials rattles when it's cold. Overall build is quite good. Interior is a bit dark.

Paul Tasker, West Yorks, October 5th 2014

TSI 110 SE 5dr DSG

  • Overall verdict4/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality3/5
  • Average MPG45 mpg

Owned the car for about 5 months now. Overall I am happy with the car, the spec for the price is excellent even on the basic models. I definitely recommend making the most of the free technology pack on offer as this includes the LED lights, Sat nav and DAB digital radio. I really regret not adding these on to mine as i went for the larger alloys and parking sensors. The biggest let down of the car is the interior build quality! Massively let down. The door panels on both doors are driving me mad with a constant rattling present in both. To top that off, the dashboard plastics around the dials also rattles like mad. The rattling is at the point of distracting me from the driving of the car as I find my self constantly attempting to push down different areas of the plastic to try and spot the spot that rattles. DRIVING ME INSANE!! The suspension also makes slight sound as I go over speed bumps at a slow speed, sounds as though something is loose. Booked the car in to the dealers to see if all of these problems get sorted. Here is me being hopeful! Running costs are fairly good, actually stats from seat is 57, whereas I find my leon sat more around 48-52 mpg on average. Still very impressive for a large sized vehicle with a 1.2 engine. I forget the engine is a 1.2 the majority, feels like a lot of power and never had the feeling of needing that bit more. Would be very interested in going for a 1.4 TSI next time as I imagine it feels like a top engine!

Daniel Moore, August 12th 2014

TSI SE 3dr

  • Overall verdict3/5
  • What it's like to drive4/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality2/5
  • Average MPG50 mpg

Has the same engine/dsg gearbox as golf gti. Infotainment system same as Audi, as are the wheel mounted steering controls & nearly everything you can see belongs to other VW/Audis. But you pay less. A lot less and get more for your money...... I have owned this car for 1 year & no problems, performance great, spec great-parking sensors dab radio sat nav & DSG box fantantastic, 32 mpg, if you cane it it gets a lot less mind but hey thats the price you pay! As you can probably tell i am impressed, only thing i can grip at is it uses more oil than any other car i have owned! And it blinking expensive oil! Serving is 20k or 2 years, better then my last car-Vauxhall Zafira & road tax is the same!

adrian jenkins, tyne & wear , July 5th 2014

16V TFSI Sport 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG31 mpg

When I bough my new Seat I wasn't expecting to find a car that delivers on all fronts, but after 600km of driving it, I have yet to make a single concession. This car delivers on all fronts, and then some. Its ride is firm, but supple, glossing over all but the most severe road imperfections (even on my optional 18" wheels). The engine is a beast, surging forward from about 1500 rpm, relentlessly. What's surprising is that it doesn't run out of puff at high rpm, and it sounds very un-diesel-like (notable exception the start and idling). Mated with a very nicely judged 6-speed manual, it's a joy to drive. The equipment level has everything you'd ever need, but it's really worth going the extra mile for the amazing infotainment system which is intuitive and very user-friendly. Leathers have also improved remarkably the interior feel, which feels solid, well built and upmarket without being over-the-top. Classy, just like the amazing exterior design (I strongly recommend the dark red color of the range). The spaces are the best you can find in this segment, and the handling is crisp and precise, despite the heavy diesel sitting at the front. I am doing 40-45mpg driving in town, but I recently took a highway trip of 100km, averaging 52mpg whilst doing 150-170kmh (95-105mph). I am sure 60+mpg figures are more than feasible with a more controlled right leg and once the engine has been through its running-in phase. And at speed it's quiet and refined... Stunning car...

Dimitris Kainadas, September 16th 2013

TDI 184 FR 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG45 mpg

I recently purchased this Leon 2.0TDi FR 184 with technology pack. First of all the car looks great in white and is a joy to drive. The ride is firm yet compliant on poor road surfaces and the handling is really good. The engine is still loosening up but there is plenty of power yet the fuel economy is really amazing. On a recent round trip to Hereford (320 miles) the average fuel consumption was 59 mpg on a mix of motorway and cross country driving. Even around town it is showing 43 mpg. Build quality is good and the sat-nav and media pack is dead easy to use. The only minor downside is a bit of wind noise from the wing mirrors but I am happy to trade that in for the very un diesely sound of the engine. I have to say I am very impressed and with the current Seat offers it is exceptional value for money.

Robin Mead, Hertfordshire, September 11th 2013

TDI 184 FR 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG53 mpg

After several years of regular journeys up and down the A130 in my trusty Clio, I felt it was time to change up to something a bit better suited to dual carriageway driving and which felt just that little bit more solid. I also wanted to treat myself to a car which would be a bit more fun to drive. Initially I'd only really considered the new Audi A3. However, my father-in-law suggested I might like to consider the new Leon too. The difference in attitudes between the two dealerships was a major factor in my final decision. Audi were complacent, Seat were enthusiastic about the car, but not at all pushy. In all they arranged 3 separate test drives, allowing me to compare different trim levels and engines head-to-head. As soon as I got into the Leon I liked it. I felt at home. All the controls are easily to hand, and unusually for an unfamiliar car I didn't need to think about brake and accelerator response, clutch control etc.. However, I did feel really engaged with the road, whereas the Audi just made me feel isolated from the outside world. Then there was the price difference... My only disappointment is the use of incandescent bulbs for things like the rear indicators. Why not LEDs? And some of the plastics might scratch easily. Otherwise I'm delighted with the Leon. I'm getting 60 mpg on motorway drives with the aircon running, and the level of equipment is superb. The LED headlights are a revelation and the cruise control makes long-distance driving much less tiring.

Matthew Butt, Essex, September 6th 2013

TDI SE 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I recently bought a metallic white demonstrator FR TDI 150 with the Tech, Convenience and Driver Assist packs, plus 18 in performance wheels and alcantara sports seats. It's a very attractive car which drives beautifully well with economy of never less than 50 mpg and it will certainly shift. The Driver Assist pack (high beam assist and lane assist) is extremely useful and the LED headlights (main and dip) are very effective. The sat nav is only via a SD card but works well enough and the DAB radio is also pretty clear with a good signal. A few teething problems have been a noisy suspension when cornering hard to the left, squeaky seats and some trim falling off the tailgate, all of which should be rectified next week. I sold a Skoda Yeti to buy the Leon, so it'll be interesting to compare the performance of the dealers (Skoda were fantastic by the way). One thing that isn't standard on the car is heated washer jets (you need to buy the winter pack for them which also includes heated seats). In my opinion they should be standard on every car! I was also considering an Audi A3 diesel, but the Leon is way better value in terms of specification, price and looks, whereas the Audi's interior seems better quality. To buy an equivalently specced A3 Sportback would have cost me about £5k extra. I didn't opt for the Autoglym Lifeshine treatment or GAP insurance or all-in service plan. Overall, although early days, it's been an extremely good buy.

michael watkins, bucks, May 21st 2013

TDI FR 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG50.5 mpg

Having owned a lot of cars over the years from most manufacturers, this is my first venture into a Seat. First of all, the thing that draws most people towards a car is the look of it...my leon is Emocion Red and the car looks excellent in this colour, very sporty and the colour shows off the lines well. The LED front and rear lights really make the car stand out and the incredible specification meant there werent many options left to tick when ordering. I settled on the technology pack, the convenience pack, 18" alloys and the Alcantara interior. All in cost just over £22k - if i specced the mk7 Golf to the same level, i would have paid over £26k. Considering its he same chassis and engine, the Leon is a comparitive bargain. Even on the 18" wheels, its a quiet, smooth drive. One thing I really like is the way it sits on the road with minimal steering input - ive had many other cars with 18" wheels and they were fidgety and hard riding. Its proving to be economical - OK im only 1 tank of fuel into ownership, but in mixed driving, its averaged 50mpg - my Golf did 55mpg in similar conditions, but I expect the Seat to improve as the engine gets a few more miles under its belt. The seats are quite firm, but very supportive and exceptionally comfortable. Its well screwed together and loaded with technology, all of which will hopefully prove to be reliable! When out on the open road, the engine cannot be heard and responds well to the throttle, even when in eco mode. A great

Andrew Tran, April 9th 2013

TDI FR 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG50 mpg

Following on from my earlier review, we have now owned the car for 4 very happy months and a few thousand [mixed] miles, so I felt I had to up the scores. Only reason I have knocked a star off the cabin is because I wanted half leather seats but it would have overspecced the car. My wife (5ft 6in) and I (6ft 6in) both love driving it and I am regularly getting 50+ mpg on mixed rush hour runs from Reading to Milton Keynes (no I am not driving at 30mph the whole way, this engine is just a peach). It does quite a few short runs so total average is nearer 45 but not bad and the claimed mpg does seem almost achievable for a change! Don't expect it to be gti fast, it is only 1.2 but the mix of economy, torque and performance is brilliant for a family car, even with 2 adults, 2 kids a double pram and some bags. Still feels tight as a drum (my only concern when I bought the car was longevity but 4 months isn't long I guess). If I didn't need a bigger car, I would seriously consider changing my Volvo 4x4 for a 180bhp FR or even the new ST estate which looks smart.

Philip Ryan, March 7th 2013

TSI SE 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG45 mpg

The 1.6tdi is considerably less economical than what is claimed (74mpg). There is no way you can do this if you exceed 40mph on a motorway and stop at red lights. Still gets 4 for running costs because 52mpg is still a decent return and it is possible to get over 60mpg if you drive like miss daisy. Chances are you won't though because the 1.6 diesel leon is fun to drive. Well weighted controls and sharp handling mean it is fun round the twisty bits and the engine provides reasonable acceleration revving freely to the red-line. Do this too often though and your economy will quickly drop to the mid 40's! Better to use the torque and change up earlier. Long gearing takes some getting used to but the longer first means you're quicker away from the mark as don't need to grab 2nd. I'd agree that some of the interior plastics are a little dated and build quality is down on the golf and new focus. Don't think I'd buy this car new but it is good value 2nd hand. <10k from a 2 year old example. One thing to note is by picking the 1.6 or 1.2tsi engines you get 16 inch alloys and no sports suspension. Makes for a much comfier ride than the higher powered versions. This was the main reason to swap from a 2.0tdi sport. Softer seats also help. So in lower powered versions you get great handling and a decent ride. The 1.6 diesel is also quite light and feels less nose heavy in tight turns than the 2.0. So overall I prefer it. Try the exact model before buying.

Paul Tasker, West Yorks, September 1st 2012

TDI CR SE 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG52 mpg

My first venture into Seat ownership, and i,m not to be disapointed, i own a 1.8 Leon Cupra T Turbo, full leather, and she is a hoot to drive, perfect as a family car, and then, great as a drivers car, just warm her up, and push the accelerator peddle, and once the Turbo kicks in, she will fly,good large boot,P.A.S. A.B.S. air con, 6 cd changer,6 speed gearbox,alloy,s,electric seats, [ driver, and passenger ] electric folding mirrors, also the bodywork on my 2002 mudel, is exceptional, with zero rust, just 2 or 3 stone chips on the bonnet, and that,s it..... if thinking of buying one, my advice is go for it......

Robert Smith, South Ayrshire, April 14th 2012

20V T Cupra 5dr

  • Overall verdict4/5
  • What it's like to drive4/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG30 mpg

We have just done the opposite to most people and gone from an FR TDi to an FR TSi simply due to an excellent deal saving us 4.5K on a new one. Also that our annual mileage is low and quite a few short journeys which do not suit a DPF equipped TDi. The FR TSi is a nicer car to drive than the TDi overall the lighter steering and clutch and slicker gear change make it an easier car to drive. The weight loss over the front wheels does transpire into quicker turn in and under steer later on a twisty B road. The engine is also less laggy than the diesel FR. Much more torque and go lower down along with a more responsive throttle ideal for stop/start and slow speed traffic. Once up and running performance is very similar between the TDi and TSi both are excellent cruisers but again being petrol the TSi is slightly more refined. With an average of 36 mpg so far and can see up to 40mpg on a long motorway run the TSi works out around 2p extra per mile on fuel and is worth on average about £1500 less come trade in. The extra discount we got offsets the extra depreciation. Overall a fun car and the improved and easier to use stereo from the VW Golf GTi/GTD has addressed one weak area. To summarise more fun to drive than the FR TDi but does not make economic sense unless you do low mileage and short journeys.

Jeremy Green, England, June 21st 2011

TSI FR+ 5dr

  • Overall verdict1/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG36 mpg

We have just done the opposite to most people and gone from an FR TDi to an FR TSi simply due to an excellent deal saving us 4.5K on a new one. Also that our annual mileage is low and quite a few short journeys which do not suit a DPF equipped TDi. The FR TSi is a nicer car to drive than the TDi overall the lighter steering and clutch and slicker gear change make it an easier car to drive. The weight loss over the front wheels does transpire into quicker turn in and under steer later on a twisty B road. The engine is also less laggy than the diesel FR. Much more torque and go lower down along with a more responsive throttle ideal for stop/start and slow speed traffic. Once up and running performance is very similar between the TDi and TSi both are excellent cruisers but again being petrol the TSi is slightly more refined. With an average of 36 mpg so far and can see up to 40mpg on a long motorway run the TSi works out around 2p extra per mile on fuel and is worth on average about £1500 less come trade in. The extra discount we got offsets the extra depreciation. Overall a fun car and the improved and easier to use stereo from the VW Golf GTi/GTD has addressed one weak area. To summarise more fun to drive than the FR TDi but does not make economic sense unless you do low mileage and short journeys.

Jeremy Green, England, June 21st 2011

TDI CR FR 5dr

  • Overall verdict1/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG36 mpg

Got this 1 year old for £6000 below list price, something of a bargain. I'm very impressed so far. Performance from the 2.0tdi is strong with ample power in reserve for overtaking. This engine has now been replaced with a newer common rail unit to improve economy and refinement. The older engine in my car however is silent at a cruise, a little noisy in 1st couple of gears and at idle but not that irritating. Handling is superb, the car just grips round bends and steering feel is good with non of the over self centering that affects other cars with electric setups. The downside of this is on rough roads the ride can be a bit jiggly but it is pretty well damped and considerably better than pre facelift leons. Was improved in the 2009 update. Settles nicely on a cruise, and standard cruise control is suprisingly useful. The new interior is smarter too, and whilst it misses out on the golfs soft touch plastics it feels solid enough. Its fairly practical although it would be better if the split fold was the other way round. Something I suspect that never got changed in LHD to RHD conversion. Overall I'm very impressed so far. I needed something more comfortable than my mito but still sporty and this fits the bill nicely.

Paul Tasker, West Yorks, June 13th 2011

16V TDI Sport 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG47 mpg

I purchased the Leon from new in 2007. The car is good to drive, although engine and road noise are worse than other cars in the class. Road handling is very good, although there is a tendency to understeer. The diesel engine returns a good 50 mpg, although this has been bettered by newer engine versions. The interior is dull, yet the equipment that came with the car was much better than either a Ford or Vauxhall for a similar price. Shortly after purchase I had a few minor problems with the car that required fixing under warranty. These included: rear wiper stopped working, rear light aspect not being watertight, climate control not working (no heat being produced). The major issue however occurred 55 days out of warranty. The instrument cluster (multi function display and all the dials) stopped working, which prevented the car from starting. The unit was replaced costing £916. SEAT stated that for the age and mileage of the car (3 years and 55 days and 39,500 miles) that this was a reasonable fault but would pay for 50% of the repair. The replacement unit also appears to have a fault with the display, which I am struggling to get SEAT to examine fully. To surmise, even though the Leon is a decent car, the serious fault with the instrument cluster and it's costly replacement so soon after the end of the warranty period, despite low mileage and a full service history, has left me very disappointed and I cannot recommend or endorse the build quality of the SEAT product.

James Dachtler, Kent, April 6th 2011

TDI Stylance 5dr

  • Overall verdict1/5
  • What it's like to drive4/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality3/5
  • Average MPG50 mpg

Is it reasonable to expect to replace a regularly serviced engine after four and a half years and 20,000 miles? This is what happened after the oil pump seized shattering it's drive chain, jamming the cam belt and bending the camshaft. Parts were so expensive that it was more economical to fit a new engine at a cost of about £4,000 ! So, VW, Audi, SEAT and Skoda drivers of models which use the 2.0 TFSI petrol engine beware ! SEAT UK's response: 'As stated in my previous emails, SEAT UK apologises that the engine in your vehicle needs replacing and for any inconvenience caused as a result of this. SEAT UK investigates every case separately and we use this information to decide if any good will gesture can be offered towards a repair. We do have specific guidelines in place when look at the possibility of a good will gesture and the vehicle age is one of the main parameters we look at. As your vehicle is over five years old, it falls outside these parameters and therefore SEAT UK can not offer a good will gesture towards the repair costs. Again I apologise if this is not the answer you were hoping for. This is however, SEAT UK's final decision regarding this issue and any further correspondence regarding this matter will be added to the case notes but not responded to.'

david timms, wilts, March 22nd 2011

16V TFSI Sport 5dr

  • Overall verdict1/5
  • What it's like to drive3/5
  • Running costs2/5
  • Quality3/5
  • Average MPG26 mpg

I have not had this car long. I picked up from the dealership the week before Christmas so it has gone through some of the worst winter weather for a long time. Consequently I have not had the joy of trying out the handling to its full potential but on ice and snow covered roads, it has felt very sure footed. I'm not sure about the cabin looks or materials quality but the equipment levels are superb, especially for the price. I have found the bluetooth phone excellent in use despite initial pairing difficulties. there is no doubt that this is the hardest sprung car I have ever owned, especially on our appalling roads, but on those rare occassions that you find a smooth bit of tarmac, it is great fun. fortunately the seats are very comfortable and the gearbox is excellent. Good motorway cruiser too. I haven't quite matched the 40+ mpg of another reviewer below but it is creeping up slowly as the engine beds in. The only gripe I have so far is the exttremely thin paint. The technology that can apply paint this thinly is truly amazing. Having a black one doesn't help and with the amount of grit laying on the roads at the moment, its riddled with stone chips. This is my first Seat and I hope the pleasure of ownership lasts. Recommend it

Ian Moore, Surrey, February 17th 2009

16V T FSI FR 5dr

  • Overall verdict4/5
  • What it's like to drive4/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality3/5
  • Average MPG30 mpg

I moved from an Ibiza TDI Cupra to the Leon TSI FR with the DSG box last November and have loved Seat's offering both times. Seat are a lot less common on the road than VW Golf and Audi A3's (especially in West London) and are a great car to look at and drive. I have the DSG box and it makes driving in traffic so easy, yet flick into paddle shift and it feels like a coiled spring ready to shoot off down the road! One criticism, i'm not mad keen on the DSG sport setting as when braking it seems to lurch forward when changing down giving the sense that you are accelerating with the change down. I have only really used a few times and found the simple solution is to paddles (the engine changes down when the rev's get too low anyway) The delivery of power is very refined and it pulls all the way through the rev range. The suspension is firm and on some poorer back roads this means it can be a bit jolty, but it's something I was happy to live with rather than have something akin to a sofa that leans throught the bends! Inside the car is very nice place to be. Yes Plastic's are a little cheaper looking but you have to be inspecting it in detail to really notice this (the door pockets are the most noticable area for this), but this aside a great steering wheel and driver position, loads of space in the rear and the boot. All in all I'd highly recommend to anyone as this is German engineerng with some Spanish flair.

Nick Wizard, February 16th 2009

16V T FSI FR 5dr

  • Overall verdict4/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG28.9 mpg