Get our newsletter

SEAT Leon, Leon SC and Leon ST facelift: old vs new compared

SEAT’s facelifted its Golf-rivalling Leon with subtly upgraded styling, two new engines and a new range-topping Xcellence trim level with bundles of extra kit. We compare the old and new models side by side to see what’s changed…

Before this new model goes on sale, many SEAT dealers will be keen to offer progressively bigger discounts on the outgoing car. View these offers on our SEAT Leon deals page or use our PCP calculator to get a better idea how much your new car could cost per month.

SEAT Leon facelift old vs new – styling

The new Leon looks almost identical to the outgoing car besides a pair of subtly tweaked fog lights and an ever-so-slightly wider grille. The old car’s angular headlights, strong bodywork creases and sporty rear end have been carried over almost completely unchanged.

High-spec FR models feature a similar contrasting black rear bumper insert and twin exhaust tips to the old model but sport a new black diffuser. Extended black trim pieces on the front bumper and revised LED headlights and brakelights give the new model a sportier look than the car it’ll replace.

All models in the Leon range, including SC three-door cars, the five-door hatchback and the practical ST estate have been fitted with these upgrades, too.

SEAT Leon facelift old vs new – interior

At first glance, the new car’s cabin looks remarkably similar to the old model’s. A larger eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system has allowed SEAT to pare back the number of buttons adorning the Leon’s centre console. A new silver strip on the dashboard helps to brighten up the old car’s rather dark interior, too.

A new wireless phone charger and phone signal booster are also offered on the new car alongside Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink connectivity features. Multiple new safety systems have been fitted to the updated Leon, too, including traffic sign recognition, pedestrian detection and blind spot warning systems. A new feature is also able to drive the car autonomously in traffic jams at speeds up to 37mph.

A new Xcellence trim level will bring Alcantara and leather trim to the new car, alongside a selection of revised interior pieces with chrome and aluminium finishes. Multi-coloured ambient lighting, keyless entry and start features and subtly revised bumpers are also offered as standard on this range-topping version.

SEAT Leon facelift old vs new – engines and driving

The facelifted car will be available with two new engines including a more powerful 1.6-litre diesel and three-cylinder 1.0-litre petrol unit – both producing 113hp. These new offerings will join the outgoing Leon’s lineup of 1.2, 1.4 and 1.8-litre petrol engines and existing 1.6 and 2.0-litre diesel units. A selection of both manual and dual-clutch automatic gearboxes will be available on the new car, too.

SEAT has confirmed the high-performance Leon Cupra model will receive a similar facelift in the near future, too. We expect it to be fitted with the same 2.0-litre turbocharged engine as the outgoing model and should produce at least 290hp.

SEAT Leon facelift old vs new – price and release date

SEAT hasn’t announced any official prices for the new Leon but has confirmed the facelifted model will go on sale in the UK in February 2017. Thanks to the host of extra equipment offered on the new model we expect it to cost slightly more across the range than the car it’ll replace.

SC models should cost from around £18,000 while five-door versions and ST estate models will set you back approximately £18,500 and £19,000 respectively. Future Cupra-spec cars will cost around £10,000 more across the range than entry-level versions, however.

Save money on your new SEAT Leon

Many SEAT dealers will be keen to clear space in their showrooms for the new car and could offer significant savings on the outgoing model as a result. View these great offers on our SEAT Leon deals page or, if you’re not sure what to buy, check out our car chooser tool.


A sporty-yet-practical family car
£18,960 - £26,025
Read review Compare offers


Practical estate car with smart looks and great engines
£19,955 - £27,020
Read review


A good all-round three-door hatchback
£15,715 - £29,615
Read review Compare offers
comments powered by Disqus