2012 Geneva Motor Show Preview: Seat presents concept for next-generation Toledo

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 2, 2012

Seat is presenting a close-to-production study at the 2012 Geneva Salon as part of the next phase of its product offensive. The Toledo Concept integrates the proportions of a sporty, coupé-like design and a classic saloon vehicle. This next-generation Toledo is a brilliant combination of remarkable design quality, rational usability, and emotion, as is instantly noticeable from the Geneva study.

The vehicle's styling language is a further development of the established, distinct SEAT design, which comes in a solid and powerful stance, and precisely executed and clear lines and surfaces. It also features the new headlamp form, which is a signature of the new design DNA of Seat.

The Toledo Concept comes in a stunning design that does not sacrifice convenience. Despite its compact, saloon-like form, it provides the usability and spaciousness of a five-door hatchback. Seat has previously presented its new design language at the past motor shows in Europe with the highly praised IBX, IBL and IBE concept vehicles.

At the Geneva Salon, the Toledo Concept demonstrates the automaker's ongoing journey for the design language to a series-production automobile. The new Toledo is 4.48 meters long, and seats five people. It also has a luggage compartment of at least 500 liters, a folding back bench and a huge back hatch. This means that the next-generation Toledo is able to perfectly combine the comparable functionality of an estate vehicle and the coupé-like stance.

SEAT President James Muir commented that the Toledo Concept exemplifies the company's idea of the "perfect mid-range" vehicle and is an "excellent" integration of "emotional design, top-level usability and dynamic driving characteristics."

He further stated that the subsequent production model will "write a whole new success story" with its "excellent" standard of quality, its "exceptional" value for the money and its unambiguous Seat identity. He also disclosed that the new Toledo establishes the next phase of the company's growth strategy and model offensive, following the new Ibiza and Mii family.

Press Release

Seat Toledo Concept

At the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, SEAT is presenting the next phase of its product offensive in the form of a close-to-production study - the SEAT Toledo Concept combines the proportions of a classic saloon car with a sporty, almost coupé-like design.

The next generation of the SEAT Toledo is an exceptional combination of emotion, outstanding design quality and rational usability, as is immediately apparent from the Geneva study. Its design language is a further development of the characteristic SEAT design - with a powerful and solid stance, with clear and precisely executed surfaces and lines, and with the new headlamp form that is a signature feature of SEAT's new design DNA.

But its striking design does not compromise its convenience. The SEAT Toledo Concept offers spaciousness and usability within compact dimensions. The Geneva study delivers a very distinct view of the future - the series-production version on which it is based will reach dealers later in 2012.

The new model clearly follows in the Toledo tradition - a highly successful milestone in SEAT history. Since it was first introduced in 1991, more than 860,000 units of the first and second generation of the mid-range saloon were built and delivered across many European countries. Alongside attractive design, its success was also the outcome of the Toledo's many practical merits.

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

Within its length of 4.48 metres, 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.

"The SEAT Toledo Concept illustrates our idea of the perfect mid-range saloon car. It is an excellent combination of emotional design, top-level usability and dynamic driving characteristics," says James Muir, President of SEAT, S.A. "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 driving 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 transportation needs. The wheelbase of 2.60 metres delivers plenty of room for five passengers.

The luggage compartment is equally generously proportioned, with impressive volume and boasting 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 an exceptionally long load length and give the Toledo a usability that is almost on par with that of an estate car.

"With the Toledo Concept, we are offering a very clear view of the next generation of our mid-range saloon. The new Toledo will be a true SEAT - perfect for the demands of everyday life, with the highest levels of quality and reliability," says Dr. Matthias Rabe, SEAT Vice President for Research and Development. "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 character

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 is modern and forward-looking.

Powerful dynamics and a mature composure characterise the front end of the SEAT 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 characteristic elements of the new SEAT model generation. Equally characteristic is the sophisticated detail design of the light units, with the chromed "wing" between 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; 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 windscreen 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 SEAT Toledo Concept reflects the modern, clear lines of the exterior. The spatial feel is light and roomy. The cockpit conveys 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 SEAT Toledo Concept.

"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," says Alejandro Mesonero-Romanos, Head of SEAT Design. "The Toledo is a unique combination of sculptural design which encompasses classic modern lines with subtle sporting overtones and outstanding everyday usability."

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