Just five months after its presentation as a prototype at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the SEAT Altea has become a reality, heralding a whole new generation of SEAT models. It is the first vehicle to be completely developed within the Audi Brand Group since it was established in 2002. It brings a new vehicle concept to the SEAT range, the MSV (Multi Sports Vehicle), which marries innovative styling and sporty driving characteristics to compact mono-space values.
The Altea displays the new styling traits that will be seen on all of SEAT’s future models: the large radiator grille, expressive almond-shaped headlamps and the "dynamic line" which runs from the front wheel arch over the doors to the rear wheel. Highlighting the Altea’s profile, this line was created by Walter de’Silva, SEAT’s Design Director, and will be a characteristic of all new SEAT cars. The strength of the Altea’s design lies in its compact, sporty look that tells little of the exceptional roominess inside for all five passengers. It is 4280 mm long, 1770 mm wide and 1570 mm high and its two-tiered boot has a capacity of over 400 litres.
The Altea also brings new technology to SEAT including FSi engines, a dual-clutch DSG gearbox, new front suspension, multi-link rear axle, electro-mechanical steering gear, and individual driver and passenger air conditioning. An exclusive SEAT development is windscreen wipers that are hidden in the A pillar.
The latest generation of engines available in the Altea takes SEAT a step forward. The petrol range will comprise 150 PS (110 kW) 2.0-litre FSi and 102 PS (75 kW) 1.6-litre engines, while the diesel range will include the 140 PS (103 kW) 2.0-litre 16V TDi and the 105 PS (77 kW) 1.9-litre TDi engines.
The two most powerful engines, the 2.0-litre FSi and TDi, are mated to a six-speed gearbox. The FSi will also be available with a six-speed automatic and sequential Tiptronic, whereas the new, six-speed sequential DSG gearbox will be available on the TDi.
The Altea has a comprehensive level of active safety with ABS, TCS, ESP and the built-in emergency braking system (EBA). These, together with its new electro-mechanical power steering and new chassis with SEAT’s agile chassis technology, guarantee stability and exceptional road handling. A new arrangement where the rear disc brake callipers are in front of the disc, greatly enhances braking stability.
The Altea will be the first SEAT model to be sold in the EU equipped as standard with driver and passenger airbag, side airbag and head airbag, as well as three-point anchoring on all seatbelts, front seatbelts with pyrotechnic pre-tensioners and rear seats with the ISOFIX system for child seats.
The Altea will be manufactured exclusively at SEAT's Martorell factory and will have its world premiere at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2004.
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