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SEAT Leon and Mii electric cars due in 2019, with more to follow

Auto Express logo Auto Express 28/03/2017 Steve Fowler

SEAT will launch four all-new cars in the next few years that will include the brand’s first electric cars. 

The SEAT Formentor large SUV is one of the four, while another all-new model will also arrive in the next few years, likely to be a crossover with a shape that will ‘blur categories’ according to SEAT insiders. 

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Chairman Luca De Meo told Auto Express that he’s already using an electric version of the Mii city car, based on the VW eUp!, for his daily commute from the centre of Barcelona to the company HQ in Martorell on the outskirts of the city. Although De Meo’s car is purely a development car, the ‘eMii’ is likely to be the first of the brand’s electric offerings and we’ve already been given a look at it at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this year.

SEAT e-mii © Provided by Auto Express SEAT e-mii

Also expected is an all-electric version of the next generation Leon, due in 2019 and based on the eGolf and its MQB platform. De Meo also confirmed that the new Ibiza’s MQB A0 platform is EV ready and that, too, could spawn an electric version. 

Post 2020, the VW Group’s MEB electric car platform will open up new possibilities for SEAT. “We are part of the biggest R&D spender on the planet,” Luca De Meo told us, “And we will come with EVs on MEB in 2020.”

Although VW’s ID is likely to be the first group car to arrive using the new technology, SEAT will have greater freedom to develop its own cars off the platform.

“It’s modular and can easily change in length,” Alejandro Mesonero, SEAT’s design director told us. “And it gives us more freedom to do something totally different on top – something that is pure SEAT.”

“Because the platform is quite high due to the batteries, the car will have to be tall and that means making it thin due to the aerodynamics – we need to reduce the frontal area and make it efficient as every extra km of range helps. But it will have big wheels and we can do a very upright rear end and sloped windscreen – it doesn’t have to look like a teardrop. But it will be beautiful and very SEAT.” 

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As well as being first to use the new MQB A0 platform in the new Ibiza, Luca De Meo wants SEAT to lead the company on connectivity. “We see potential for being the drivers on connected cars for the whole group – cars that will talk to parking operators, to town halls to make driving easier.” 

De Meo also hinted that we’d see more extravagant design from SEAT in the near future, including on the car’s interior. He hinted that the forthcoming large SUV, the Formentor, will preview a new design language that will the come to life in 2019’s new Leon, a car that will kick start a regeneration of the whole SEAT range. 

What do you think of SEAT's EV plans? Let us know in the comments section...

SEAT Leon - front cornering © Auto Express SEAT Leon - front cornering
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