The consumer’s motoring Bible, What Car? magazine, has awarded the SEAT Ibiza the ultimate accolade, the title of What Car? Car of the Year 2003. What Car?’s expert panel of judges, made up from road testers and journalists on the magazine, chose the 5-door Ibiza 1.2 from hundreds of new cars tested, firstly as the winner in its Supermini category, and then as the overall Car of the Year 2003 from an impressive line up of 18 category winners.
What Car? praised the Ibiza for its sporting good looks, youthful appeal, excellent safety and economical ownership experience aided by its competitive price of £8495, low insurance group and exceptional fuel economy.
The award was presented to SEAT S.A Chairman, Dr Andreas Schleef by What Car? Editor, Rob Aherne, at a glittering ceremony held at the Hilton Park Lane in London on 15 January. Commenting on the What Car? winner Rob Aherne said: "It’s a great day for car buyers when so little money buys so much car. The Ibiza may be cheap to buy and run, but spending so little no longer means cutting corners." He went on to say: "The Ibiza does all the basic things well: it’s inexpensive, spacious enough for a family and solidly built, but what it also has is a welcome dose of zest and fun. It’s a car that satisfies the head and heart in equal measure."
The third generation Ibiza has already proved an enormous success for SEAT with over 7000 of the new model sold since its launch in May last year. The new Ibiza lives up to the brand claim, "auto emocion" by retaining all the Latin spirit of its predecessors while strengthening its sporty image through its distinctive design, technical advances and unique features such as the dynamic steering response. The Ibiza is also one of the safest vehicles in its class, achieving a four star rating in the tough Euro NCAP crash tests, and the highest score ever achieved in this class of car for pedestrian safety.
The full Ibiza model range comprises 3- and 5-door hatches with engines ranging from the award-winning 1.2 litre petrol to the most powerful diesel engine available in any supermini, the 1.9 litre 130 bhp turbo diesel. Prices start at £7995 on the road and for extra peace of mind all new Ibizas are covered by a 3-year/60,000 mile warranty, 3-years roadside assistance and 12-year anti-corrosion warranty.Published 17 January 2003