The Seat Toledo a triumph in a Sporty Coupé Design

In Seat by Jonathan HumphreyLeave a Comment

SEAT is presenting the next phase of its product offensive in the form of a close-to-production study.  The Toledo Concept combines the proportions of a classic saloon car with a sporty, almost coupé-like design. 

The SEAT Toledo is an exceptional combination of emotion, outstanding design quality and rational usability. The design language is a further development of the now characteristic SEAT design – with a powerful and solid stance, clear and precisely-executed surfaces and lines, and with the new headlamp form that is a signature feature of SEAT’s new design DNA.

  • The Toledo is back – the return of a successful car style
  • Sophisticated design with a sporty dynamic drive
  • State-of-the-art technology, high quality as standard

But its striking design does not compromise convenience.  Although presenting a saloon-like silhouette, the Toledo Concept in fact offers the spaciousness and usability of a five-door hatchback, within compact dimensions.  The Geneva study delivers a very distinct view of the future – the series-production version on which it is based will begin to reach dealers in Spain later 012.


At previous European motorshows, SEAT has presented its new style language with the highly acclaimed IBE, IBX and IBL concept cars.  The Toledo Concept at the 2012 Geneva Salon illustrates that design language’s ongoing journey to a series-production vehicle.  Not only will the new Toledo be exceptionally attractive, but it will also be exceptionally good value for money.

Measuring 4.48 metres in length, the new Toledo will offer a generously proportioned interior for five people, a luggage compartment of more than 500 litres and the convenience of a large rear hatch and folding rear bench.  Thus, the future Toledo manages to reconcile perfectly the apparently incompatible – combining an almost coupé-like profile with the comparable functionality of an estate car.

James Muir, President of SEAT, S.A. said: ‘The SEAT Toledo Concept illustrates our idea of the perfect mid-range car.  It is an excellent combination of emotional design, top-level usability and dynamic driving characteristics. The subsequent production model, our new Toledo, will write a whole new success story with its clear SEAT identity, its excellent quality standard and exceptional value-for-money. Following the Mii family and the new Ibiza, the new Toledo marks the next wave in our model offensive and growth strategy.”

The Concept – fun to drive and usability in a compact format

At a length of 4.48 metres, the forthcoming SEAT Toledo is compact enough for city driving.  With its spacious interior and generous luggage capacity, it is nevertheless well equipped for long journeys and family transport.  The wheelbase of 2.60 metres delivers plenty of room for driver and up to four passengers.

The luggage compartment is exceptionally well-proportioned, with impressive volume and excellent usability.  Although perhaps not apparent at first glance, the new Toledo possesses a large rear hatch for optimum loading.  Finally, the folding rear seats facilitate a long load length and give the Toledo a functionality that is almost on par with that of an estate car.  With the rear seat backs folded forward it boasts a maximum load capacity of more than some ‘regular’ estate cars.

Dr Matthias Rabe, SEAT Vice President for Research and Development, said: ‘With the Toledo Concept, we are offering a very clear view of the next generation of our mid-range car.  The new Toledo will be a true SEAT – perfect for the demands of everyday life, with the highest levels of quality and reliability. State-of-the-art technologies in terms of engines and chassis will deliver fun driving combined with outstanding efficiency and safety – reflecting the core values of our brand.  The Toledo will be equipped with the very latest technology from the Volkswagen Group.”

The Design – a strong sporting characterful car

SEAT Design is taking its characteristic design language to the next level with the Toledo Concept – and adding an extra portion of sophistication into the mix.  From the very first glimpse, the close-to-production study cuts a fine figure with its stretched proportions, clean surfaces and sculpted edges.  Neither one line too many nor too few – the Toledo’s design is modern and forward-looking, yet in no way superficial.

Powerful dynamics and a mature composurecharacterise the front end of the Toledo Concept.

The SEAT grille with its honeycomb mesh retains its typical trapezoidal form, but with a very wide and low look. The same applies to the large air inlet beneath the bumper.  The pentagonal form of the similarly broad front headlamps is one of the key characteristics of the new SEAT model generation.

Equally characteristic is the sophisticated design of the light units, with the chromed ‘wing’ between the main headlamp and daytime running light.  The broad rear lights also underscore the mature styling of the new SEAT saloon, while the entire rear end conveys the impression of quality and solidity with its few, simply drawn lines.

The side profile of the Toledo has a taut and dynamic look.  A clean edge runs from the headlamps across the shoulders to the rear lights and the area around the sills has a simple, sculptural feel.  The most important element, however, is the roofline.  It carves an elegant arc all the way to the powerful breadth of the C-pillar, which emerges seamlessly from the rear side panel.  The very flat angle of the rear window underscores the coupé look.  But, nevertheless, the designers and engineers paid close attention to achieving a high degree of functionality. The large door cut-outs in the rear, too, ease entry and exit.

The interior of the Toledo Concept reflects the modern, clear lines of the exterior. The light, roomy cabin boasts a cockpit conveying a feeling of ergonomic clarity, with the top of the dashboard seeming to float effortlessly above the air vents and trim elements.

The instrument dials are just as clean in their design as the centre console housing the audio and climate controls.  The light colouring of the interior, the sophisticated stitching of the leather seats and the leather cladding on the cockpit and doors emphasise the fine, premium character of the Toledo Concept.

Alejandro Mesonero-Romanos, Head of SEAT Design, said: ‘The Toledo Concept has a powerful character, is sophisticated and timeless – a true personality.  These qualities are shared with the owners of previous generations of Toledo. The Toledo is a unique combination of sculptural design which encompasses classic modern lines with subtle sporting overtones and outstanding everyday usability.”

Leave a Comment