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Seat Leon ST
The Top Gear car review: Seat Leon ST
What is it like on the road?
It’s surprising how little the bigger diesel powerplants dangling over the front axle have worried the dynamics of this new Leon. It rides tidily and feels light and quick-witted for a medium-sized estate, helped by its respectably light 1,350kg mass. That said, the progressive steering system isn’t the last word in feelsomeness, and the usually excellent DSG auto ’box can be jerky, so best stick to the six-speed manual if you can bear to employ your left arm and leg.
Engine-wise, it’s the usual MQB suspects – two petrol TSIs (a 108bhp 1.2-litre and 148bhp 1.4-litre) and three diesel TDIs (a 184lb ft 1.6, 236lb ft 2.0 and 280lb ft higher powered 2.0) – all available in semi-sporty FR trim as well as other more mundane specs. We loved the mid-ranking 148bhp diesel in the hatch and, despite the ST’s 45kg weight premium and 1.1-second drop in 0–62mph time, the in-gear thrust still engenders a slight tingling, not to mention a real-world 55mpg and low-tax 106g/km of CO2. All in all the Leon ST is one of the more rewarding and entertaining compact estates to drive.