- The car Seat Arona 1.0 TSI 95 SE Technology
- Run by Kris Culmer, sub-editor
- Why it’s here To validate its position as head of the burgeoning small SUV class
- Needs to Prove practical enough for a family, display the pleasant driving characteristics of its relatives and be economical to run
Price £17,545 Price as tested £17,545 Miles 8852 Official economy 57.6mpg Test economy 46.1mpg Options fitted None
3 May 2018 – award-winning credentials
After lavishing the Arona with praise in my previous report, I’m afraid I now have a complaint or three to make.
I try to change the radio or sat-nav only when I’m stationary – such as at a red light or in queues – to reduce distraction. When I do this, I leave first gear engaged and the clutch depressed, rather than shifting into neutral, so I can get up to speed again more quickly. Trouble is, I’m unable to operate the Arona's touchscreen until I’ve dismissed a message from the stop-start system asking me to engage neutral so that it can do its thing – this is very irritating.
Then there’s a fault with the windscreen wipers. On the two occasions when I’ve driven with them in their most intense setting for more than an hour, they've frozen – more than a little scary when I was going at 70mph through thick spray – and reanimated only after being turned off and on again.
And then, most seriously, a week ago I received a call from Seat to inform me not to use the central rear seat due to a seatbelt safety issue; I’ll update you on that once remedial work has been done to fix it.
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