What's the used Seat Tarraco estate like?
Seat may have been a little late to the SUV party but it’s made up for that with the quality and the individuality of its offerings. The family-sized Ateca shot straight to the top of its class when it was launched in 2016, and the smaller Arona impressed us nearly as much with its driving abilities and roomy interior.
What was missing was a larger, seven-seat SUV, and to fill that void in 2018 the firm served up the chisel-jawed and capacious Tarraco. Designed by Seat but based on the underpinnings of similar and existing VW group products – and even manufactured on the same production line in Germany – the Tarraco has the firm’s sporty and more youthful ethos to distinguish it from its siblings.
Under the bonnet, new buyers could have chosen from petrol or diesel-engined options. The petrols are a 148bhp 1.5-litre or a 187bhp 2.0-litre; the diesels a 2.0-litre unit in two differing states of tune, either 148bhp or 187bhp. A six-speed manual gearbox comes as standard, along with front-wheel drive, but a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic ’box and four-wheel drive were also available from new.
Trim-wise, entry-level SE models are reasonably equipped, with 17in alloy wheels, three-zone climate control, automatic wipers and power-folding door mirrors. There’s also an SE Technology trim, which includes sat-nav and upmarket features such as 18in wheels and tinted rear windows. Xcellence trim adds keyless entry and go, adaptive cruise control, a hands-free electric tailgate and a system that will steer the car into parking spaces for you, while Xcellence Lux specification includes heated front and rear seats.
On the road, the 1.5 petrol-engined car is smooth and quiet and fast enough for most purposes, but it can feel a little underpowered occasionally, while the 2.0-litre is a brisk performer. However, the abstemious diesels both have more low-down grunt.
Seat’s earlier SUVs had a reputation for taut handling and the Tarraco is no exception. The suspension setup is on the firm side, so it keeps this large and heavy SUV in check in corners, with little body lean. The flip side is a ride that can occasionally be unsettled, especially by dips and crests in the road, but, for the most part, this car rides well and smothers everyday potholes and imperfections, especially if you can find one fitted with the standard (18in) wheels.
Road and wind noise are both very well contained, too, and all the power choices are smooth and refined, meaning that progress is easy-going, especially in the cars equipped with an automatic gearbox.
Inside, the driving position is multi-adjustable and should suit all. The dashboard is a paragon of simplicity, with easy to use buttons and logically laid out switchgear. An 8.0in touchscreen, with sat-nav and DAB radio, is standard on all trims. Thanks to good use of soft-touch, tactile materials, the interior of the Tarraco feels quite up-market.
There’s plenty of space, too, with second-row seats that slide and recline. Only in the third row do you have to compromise on space - children will be happy but teenagers and adults will not want to spend long back there. The boot, meanwhile, is large and easy to access, although the Peugeot 5008 does have a larger capacity.
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