Performance & drive
What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is
Engine, 0-60mph and gearbox
The Seat Arona engine range kicks off with the 94bhp 1.0 TSI 95. It can feel a bit sluggish at low revs, but once you’re up and running, there’s enough power to sit comfortably at motorway speeds. Officially, it’ll get from 0-62mph in 11.5sec, which is ever so slightly slower than the Volkswagen T-Cross and around a second slower than the entry-level Ford Puma.
The extra power that the mid-range 108bhp 1.0 TSI 110 gives you makes it our chosen engine. It doesn’t cost much more but pulls better from low revs and feels more energetic in every situation. If you choose SE or SE Technology trim, it'll be paired with an automatic gearbox that flicks through the gears quickly and smoothly. Higher trims give you the choice of a manual or auto.
If you opt for FR trim, you get firmer sports suspension, while FR Sport pairs the sports suspension with larger 18in alloy wheels. With the larger wheels and stiffer suspension fitted, the Arona is noticeably less settled over craggy roads, although it stops short of being uncomfortable – a Nissan Juke, for example, is generally more agitated over all surfaces.
The top-tier Xperience Lux trim, which gets the 18in rims but not the suspension upgrade, is a little more settled than the FR Sport, but still thumps a little over larger abrasions. If comfort is high on your list of priorities, we’d recommend taking a look at the softer Skoda Kamiq or the T-Cross.