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Fast, efficient, sporty, five doors: is this Leon FR every car you need?

Spanish manufacturer Seat has come a very long way. It was, for many years, a builder of fairly sub-standard cars, such as this rather sorry-looking Ibiza.

Even after Seat was taken over by Volkswagen in 1986, it took a long time before the influence of the German giant to really take effect. But then, as has happened with Skoda, something fantastic occurred.

Seat started to work with the VW cars: using the engines and floorpans, just offering its own ‘re-skinned’ appearance and driving characteristics. While VWs have their own qualities, which mainly focus on sheer build quality, Seats tend to have a lighter feel, which makes them more playful and a lot of fun to drive, but still retaining the build quality and reliability.

They also tend to come with a lot of options as standard, and, as new cars, appealing finance deals which has helped shift them in decent numbers in the UK.

Arguably what Seat has done very well, though, is in the warm/hot hatchback sector. The Leon, in particular, has benefited from some excellent FR/Cupra models that have really caught the imagination.

The model we have in stock at the moment, a 2008 Leon FR, really stands out from the crowd and, we realise, won’t appeal to everyone. Its eye-catching orange paintwork, along with the very aggressive BTCC bodykit, shows this car means business.

However, this car is multi-talented – it has the pace to match those looks, but is also very efficient, making it an ideal everyday car as well as something you can enjoy on a b-road. The 2.0tdi engine had 168bhp when it left the factory, but has been tuned to just over 200bhp, with a huge amount of torque on offer. That means it boasts about as much real-world pace as you could ever realistically need. It has a number of modifications to the exhaust, air intake and suspension to improve throttle response and handling.

Meanwhile, driven carefully, it can achieve an MPG in the high 40s, and is the five-door model, making it a completely usable, fun, practical sports car for less than £8,000.

For the full spec, check out our link here and don’t forget to try our quote page if you are interested in trading in your own car.

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