SEAT Ibiza Review & Prices
If you’re after a stylish and efficient small car, the Seat Ibiza is a great choice. Although, it could be a tad more practical…
What's not so good
Find out more about the SEAT Ibiza
It’s so pleasing on the eye, in fact, that an update in 2021 saw very little change on the outside. However, where the old car’s pretty body was cashing cheques its dull cabin couldn’t cash, the revised one has more substance inside as well.
There’s a big strip of silver dash trim, which combines with some coloured air vents, a soft-touch upper dash, new infotainment screens and a new steering wheel. It doesn’t sound like much, but it does liven things up quite a bit inside, while surfaces feel nicer to the touch. It’s a shame the door trim is still so plasticky, though.
The front seats come with a decent range of adjustment as standard, but no models are offered with the option of lumbar support to ease backache on long drives, and you only get a front centre armrest in high-spec models.
Entry-level cars ditch the previously tiny centre information screen – it was so small it looked like a mid-2000s phone – and get a proper 8.0-inch touchscreen with Bluetooth, DAB Radio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, allowing you to connect your smartphone and mirror its apps on the screen. Mid-range cars and above receive a chunky 9.2-inch touchscreen that also brings sat nav, while top models finally bring fully digital instruments to the Ibiza range.
You won’t hear too many complaints from those in the back. The SEAT Ibiza is pretty spacious for a small car – there’s a fair amount of legroom and even six-footers will have headroom to spare.
The SEAT Ibiza is not perfect but it’s a really good small car with a neat, tidy interior and a decent boot
The Ibiza’s boot is an impressive size for a small car. It's more spacious than the Ford Fiesta’s and has a large square opening so it’s fairly easy to load large items. Fold the seats down and the boot floor is nearly completely flat. There’s room for some valuables under the false floor too, and a couple of handy hooks will stop your shopping bags rolling around.
You can get the SEAT Ibiza with a choice of three 1.0-litre petrol engines. The most efficient in the range is the 95hp petrol and we managed to average 45mpg in town and on the motorway. It’s reasonably quiet at speed, but the power isn’t as consistent through the revs as some of its rivals like the Ford Fiesta.
The 80hp and 95hp Ibizas come with a five-speed manual gearbox, while the 110hp car has a six-speed manual, with a seven-speed twin-clutch automatic available for a little extra cash. This auto will make lengthy traffic jams and long journeys more bearable.
You don’t have to worry about spending extra money making the SEAT Ibiza safe. Euro NCAP awarded the Ibiza an impressive five-star safety rating thanks to its strong occupant protection and standard automatic emergency city braking.
It’s another feather in the SEAT Ibiza’s cap. It’s a smart-looking, capable small family car that’s definitely worth considering if you’re looking for something that’s both practical and a little sporty. Check out our latest new SEAT Ibiza deals as well as used SEAT Ibiza deals to find out how much you could save when buying through carwow. Why not also browse other used SEAT models? And if you want to sell your current car, carwow can help with that too.
The SEAT Ibiza has a RRP range of £19,715 to £24,895. However, with Carwow you can save on average £1,244. Prices start at £18,646 if paying cash. Monthly payments start at £185. The price of a used SEAT Ibiza on Carwow starts at £8,238.
Our most popular versions of the SEAT Ibiza are:
|Carwow price from
|1.0 TSI 95 SE 5dr
The SEAT Ibiza shares a lot of its parts with the Volkswagen Polo and Skoda Fabia, but it’s the cheapest of the three. In terms of tech, that means you miss out on a few premium options on entry level cars. For instance, you only get a digital driver’s display on the top Ibiza models, whereas every Volkswagen Polo gets one.
That being said, metallic paint comes as standard on the SEAT Ibiza, whereas Volkswagen will charge for every paint colour - apart from the standard grey. Swings and roundabouts. Like most 1.0-litre petrol engines, the ones you get in the SEAT Ibiza are efficient and cheap to insure and tax, so you’ll have low running costs.
Two trim levels lower in the range, called SE and SE Technology, act as your fairly basic entries to the Ibiza range. If you fancy sportier looks and driving there are a couple of FR trims, while the high-specification Xcellence versions are a bit more comfort-focused and come loaded with more kit.
The SEAT Ibiza is both comfy and fun to drive. The engines are good too - if a touch noisy
The SEAT Ibiza is a great car for pottering about town. Although it’s comparatively large for a supermini, the light steering is ideal for parking manoeuvres and the all-round visibility really help at tricky junctions.
The mirrors are good too, although if you’re not that confident at parking, you’ll need a higher spec trim as they’re the only models that come with parking sensors – including on the front for the range-topping Xcellence Lux model. You also get a rear camera on this version to make sure you stay scrape free when parallel parking.
The suspension is fairly forgiving over potholes and speed bumps too, but if you do most of your driving in urban environments you might find the sports suspension and bigger wheels on the FR models a tad too stiff.
The small yet efficient 1.0-litre engines work best at low speeds, and the lack of a sixth gear doesn’t make much of a difference at the lower speeds you’ll be driving inside the city limits. But even if you do most of your driving in towns we’d steer clear of the non-turbo 80hp version as it can be hard work, even in jams.
On the motorway
The five-speed manual gearbox fitted to the less powerful models isn’t that great for motorway driving, and that means you get a bit more engine noise in the cabin and slightly poorer fuel efficiency. The 80hp model will struggle, especially with a full car of passengers and luggage, whereas the 95hp model will do the job. The 110hp model is usefully more punchy on the motorway and with an extra gear is more efficient, so would be the best choice if you regularly do long distances.
Wind and tyre noise isn’t too bad, and the seats are comfy, but could be more supportive - you might need a few service station breaks on long journeys. All models get cruise control and lane keep assist as standard. So even if you’re not too familiar with the motorway, there’s a few gizmos to help and keep you safe.
On a twisty road
It may not be as fun to drive as a Ford Fiesta, but the SEAT Ibiza gets pretty close. If you enjoy your country roads, the FR models with sports suspension are just for you. Compared to the slightly heavier Volkswagen Polo, even the entry level model is stable and keen to corner if you can build up enough speed.
If you get satisfaction out of changing gears manually, you’ll be pleased to know that the manual gearboxes feel solid and robust. SEAT’s drive profile modes on the FR models have four different settings so you can customise the throttle response and steering. A fun gimmick - but a little unnecessary. Unfortunately, you can’t get a more powerful engine to go with the FR like you can with the Volkswagen Polo GTI, which has 207hp. Oh well.
The SEAT Ibiza is happy carrying two adults in the back and it has a big boot, but its narrow body means three rear passengers will be short on shoulder room
There’s plenty of room and adjustment behind the steering wheel to help most drivers get comfortable. Even if you’re over six-foot tall the front seats slide back far enough to accommodate lanky legs.
All models come with a height-adjustable seat and a wheel that adjusts both in-and-out and up-and-down.
Unfortunately, only higher-spec variants get height adjustment for the passenger seat. Both the standard front seats, the sporty FR items and the posher suede-like top-spec versions are supportive and comfortable but neither are available with adjustable lumbar support to save you from backache on long journeys.
You only get cup holders in the front and they do the job, but larger coffee cups might be tricky to squeeze in.
Whilst the front door bins can fit large water bottles, the ones in the back are tiny. The glove box is small, too, but there is a handy spot for your smartphone in the centre console.
The Xcellence and Xcellence Lux models have a little more useful storage space, with an extra pull-out drawer under the right front seat which is perfect for keeping a handbag or other valuables out of sight. They also add a front centre armrest.
Generally though, the Ibiza is only average for stowage - if you want a small car that’s a bit more practical, check out the Renault Clio or Skoda Fabia.
Space in the back seats
All SEAT Ibizas come as a five-door and the rears open nice and wide, so your passengers shouldn’t have any problems getting into the back seats. There’s enough room to comfortably put a child seat in the back, too. The ISOFIX fittings are a bit trickier to locate and lock in compared to say, a Skoda Fabia, but at least there’s plenty of room in the back to help you.
You’ll comfortably seat two adults in the rear and there’s more than enough headroom for those over six-foot tall to not brush their heads on the roof lining. Your passengers will be treated to some reasonable leg room in the back, too, as there’s plenty of foot room under the front seats.
If you need to fit three across the back however, expect a fair bit of shoulder bumping - the Ibiza has quite a narrow body. There’s also a significant hump down the middle of the floor, so legroom isn’t ideal for three either.
It may not be the most practical small car, but the Ibiza does have a generously sized boot. You’ll be able to squeeze in 355 litres of luggage into the SEAT with the rear seats and parcel shelf in place.
That’s more than most small cars can muster, with the Ford Fiesta some way behind with 292 litres and the Volkswagen Polo just behind with 351 litres. The Skoda Fabia wins this round with 380 litres, though.
Two large suitcases will fit sitting on their sides, and there’s enough space left over for a small case. Unfortunately, the SEAT Ibiza’s sloping rear windscreen means there isn’t space for tall boxes or big dogs – even if you remove the parcel shelf.
Once you’ve folded the rear seats there’ll be a sizeable step in the boot floor which makes sliding in long items a bit tricky. There’s a slight boot lip to contend with as well, but the Ibiza’s large, square boot opening means loading bulky or oddly shaped luggage isn’t too difficult.
The SEAT Ibiza interior has always been neatly organised and easy to get on with, but the entry level models look a little drab
Thanks to a series of tweaks for 2021, the Ibiza is a lot more welcoming inside than it was previously. Rather than an endless sea of black and grey plastic, there’s now a big metallic strip across the dash of even the cheapest models, while the air vent surrounds can be had in a number of different colours. It’s hardly a Rolls-Royce, but the differences make it a bit more habitable.
There’s also a new soft-touch upper dash portion to make things a little classier, but it’s a shame there is still a fair few hard and scratchy plastics dotted around – particularly on the doors. Still, the Volkswagen Polo and Audi A1 exist if that really matters to you, and the SEAT Ibiza’s cabin feels solidly screwed together.
Top-spec cars get Alcantara-like seat trim which feels posher, too, while the sports seats on FR trims are nicely supportive. It’s just a pity there’s no lumbar adjustment.
The entry level model starts with a nifty 8.2-inch infotainment touchscreen, but all other models get a 9.2-inch screen. Not a lot of difference then, but they all have smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, so you can use your favourite navigation and music apps on the move.
They all use a slightly older operating system than the version used in the latest Volkswagens, but it’s still sharp, responsive and easy to use. In fact, we think it’s a bit more intuitive than the newer system you’ll find in the VW Golf.
The touchscreens are much more user-friendly than the system in a Renault Clio, but it would benefit from a set of physical buttons (like the ones in a Skoda Fabia), rather than the fiddly touch sensitive ones, to help you skip between key features without taking your eyes off the road.
Its menus are sensibly laid out, but its glossy screen shows up every greasy finger mark. Similarly, the glossy plastic bezel around the screen looks nice but scratches easily – not ideal for something you’ll poke and prod regularly.
There are three engine options in the SEAT Ibiza and all are 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol units, with the higher two featuring turbochargers. The entry level options put out 80hp and 95hp and have a five-speed manual gearbox, while the 110hp version gets six speeds. They’re strong performers for their size, but some alternative three-cylinder small hatchbacks are smoother and quieter.
We’d avoid the non-turbo 80hp version unless you really need the low insurance group. Pick the frugal – yet still perfectly adequate – 95hp version if you spend most of your time driving around town. We managed to average 45mpg in mixed driving.
The 110hp Ibiza can be had with a smooth twin-clutch automatic gearbox, too. Although this unit will set you back a bit more cash than the manual gearbox and is slightly less efficient.
As well as low running costs, these engines are also cheap to tax, just like the Volkswagen Polo and Skoda Fabia.
They all offer a similar mpg range, but the best engine for fuel economy is the 95hp turbocharged TSI engine, as it doesn’t have to be worked as hard to move the Ibiza around as the weedier 80hp unit. The difference between them in official tests is almost non-existent, though.
The 110hp engine is slightly thirstier, but not by as much as you might expect, and it can still average about 52mpg with emissions of 124g/km. The seven-speed DSG automatic version is the least efficient gearbox across the range – although the difference isn’t as much as it is on some rival small cars with auto boxes – the claimed official average is 48.2mpg.
First-year tax is on the low side, like it is for most cars of this size, because the small engines don't emit much CO2. If you want to eliminate that cost, you'll want a small electric car. Check out the Peugeot e-208 and Vauxhall Corsa-e. If they’re out of your budget, the Renault Clio is available as a hybrid at a reasonable price.
The SEAT Ibiza scored a five-star Euro NCAP rating, just like the Volkswagen Polo. The Polo scored slightly better for safety assistance, but there’s not much in it.
As standard you get a fair amount of safety assistance tech. All Ibiza’s come with cruise control and speed limiter, but only the top Xcellence Lux trim model is available with radar controlled adaptive cruise control.
NCAP also says the Ibiza is safer for pedestrians than both the Volkswagen Polo and Skoda Fabia. For adult occupant safety it scores well, as with child occupant safety. As standard, you get six airbags with the Ibiza, so you have good all-round protection.
All new SEATs come with a three-year or 60,000 mile warranty as standard, which is the industry minimum these days. But if that doesn’t cut it for you, you can extend it to four years/75,000 miles or five years/90,000 miles at a pretty reasonable cost.
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*Please contact the dealer for a personalised quote, including terms and conditions. Quote is subject to dealer requirements, including status and availability. Illustrations are based on personal contract hire, 9 month upfront fee, 48 month term and 8000 miles annually, VAT included.