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Review: SEAT Ibiza Good Stuff

SEAT thinks it’s got the Good Stuff with its latest Ibiza special edition. Steve Walker takes a look.

The worlds of popular music and motoring have been colliding at regular intervals since the motorcar intertwined itself with mainstream modern life.

Musicians were writing and singing about cars back when Elvis Presley needed his cheeseburgers liquidised and spoon fed to him by his mother. Columbian pop star Shakira might not be doing cover versions of classic car songs by the Beetles, the Beach Boys or Bruce Springsteen on her tour dates but even she has a motoring link. SEAT are sponsoring the European leg of her world tour and she’s helping to promote the Good Stuff special edition version of the Ibiza supermini in return.

SEAT is offering a range of Good Stuff special edition models as part of its promotional tie-in with Shakira. There are versions of the car based on the Ibiza supermini and the Leon family hatchback with the Good Stuff branding being inspired by a lyric on the singer’s latest album, She Wolf. Pop star tie-ins with cars are less common than cars popping-up in pop songs and videos but perhaps this is a sign of things to come as big name acts look to grow revenues in the wake of the MP3 and internet downloading.

It’s the affordable and popular 1.4-litre petrol engine that powers the Ibiza Good Stuff. It’s a four-cylinder, 16-valve unit with a multi-point fuel injection system. Maximum power of 84bhp is produced at 5,000rpm and peak torque is measured at 132Nm at 3,800rpm. The 12.2s 0-60mph time is usefully faster than the 15.0 seconds that the entry-level 69bhp 1.2-litre engine takes to accomplish the same and the 108mph top speed leaves little room for concerns about it’s ability to keep up with traffic.

"Fans of South American songstress Shakira might well be seduced by the SEAT Ibiza Good Stuff"

The previous Ibiza’s driving experience won praise from all quarters and this car continues that approach. It remains impressively composed in corners and the sharp steering makes it easy to spirit about the place. Sport models feature firmer suspension but even here, the ride isn’t harsh and the things that shine through after a stint in an Ibiza are its comfort, refinement and the overriding big car feel. These are qualities we’d more readily associate with Volkswagen’s Polo than SEAT’s Ibiza which isn’t surprising because the two cars share a basic platform.

The crisply styled Ibiza bodywork makes it one of the most distinctive and sporty looking cars in the supermini sector. The Good Stuff models are available in the five-door bodystyle and the three-door SC (Sport Coupe) shape but both are easy on the eye. Enhancing the look of these special edition models is a set of 16" alloy wheels and tinted glass but otherwise the exterior recipe is the same as other middle-ranking Ibiza models.

The interior of the Ibiza is an upmarket affair with some nice trim finishes and good amounts of space front and rear. The sparky design of the outside isn’t really carried over internally and the dash follows a more conservative line that veers towards classic style rather than cutting-edge fashion. The colour scheme might be a little grey for some tastes but the Ibiza always feels a quality product when you spend time sat in it.

The Good Stuff models aren’t lacking in the good stuff, or standard equipment as it’s also known. There’s climate control as standard along with electric front windows, cruise control, a trim computer, remote central locking and electric heated door mirrors. Perhaps more interesting are the gadgets you get with the car. There’s an 8Gb iPod Nano thrown in that will integrate with the in-car CD stereo through the AUX-in connector and SEAT are also including a Tom Tom one V5 portable navigation system with the car. With prices for both bodystyles dipping under £13,000, the Good Stuff appears to live up to its name.

Minimising costs is a vital part of any affordable supermini’s job and the 1.4 petrol powered Good Stuff rises to the challenge well. Average fuel economy of 45.5mpg is pretty good for a 1.4-litre supermini and emissions of 149g/km are also respectable. All Ibizas are accompanied by a 3-year/60,000-mile warranty and twelve years of anti-perforation cover which reflects SEAT’s confidence of victory in the battle against rust. Major servicing is required at 20,000-mile intervals and a dose of fresh oil every 10,000 miles or 12 months.

Fans of South American songstress Shakira might well be seduced by the SEAT Ibiza Good Stuff special edition. The car and the pop star have been thrown together by SEAT sponsoring the European leg of the Shakira 2010 world tour but even if the songs leave you cold, there’s reason enough to warm to the Good Stuff models.

Low pricing and lots of equipment are the familiar special edition formula and the Ibiza Good Stuff offers both. The inclusion of a Tom Tom navigation device and an iPob Nano will attract interest but so should the specification of the car and the general quality of SEAT’s supermini.

Belfast Telegraph


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