SEAT Ibiza (1985 – 1993) Review

SEAT Ibiza (1985 – 1993) At A Glance


+Smart-looking hatchback penned by Ital Design and engineered by Porsche

-Flattered to deceive

The SEAT Ibiza wasn't the first car designed by in-house, but it was a ground-breaker for SEAT by being the first to start with a clean sheet of paper following its independence from Fiat. Whereas the Sport used Fiat underpinnings and drivetrain, the Ibiza shared very little with what went before - the floorpan was a highly modified version of the Ronda's (nee Fiat Strada), but the engine was all new, developed in parallel with Porsche.

At first glance, the Ibiza looked the business, too – it had a smart Giugiaro-styled body, which had been developed for production by Karmann, and a range of what were dubbed System Porsche engines. Under the skin, it closely resembled the Seat Ronda (itself a badge-engineered Fiat Strada) and that blessed the Ibiza with a roomy, if unimaginative looking, interior compared with its supermini rivals. Overall, a little rough around the edges, and systematically improved following Volkswagen becoming a major shareholder in SEAT in 1986.