After five million sales and four generations, SEAT’s most popular model, the Ibiza, has turned 30. An all-new MkV car will arrive in 2016, but for now SEAT is celebrating the landmark with the 30 Years Special Edition.
Based on the three-door Ibiza SC in mid-spec SE trim, it includes climate control, black Alcantara trim, sat-nav, Bluetooth and a rear view camera. There are also black 17-inch Tagus alloys, which exaggerate the firm ride but – along with the bi-xenon headlights and tinted glass – help justify the £2,255 premium.
All pretty good value, although the new I-TECH model might be a better bet: it’s nearly £1,000 cheaper, almost as well equipped and isn’t burdened by the special edition’s 84bhp 1.4-litre petrol engine. A long-time fixture in the range, this naturally aspirated unit is lacklustre and falls short for efficiency, too.
Also, despite nimble steering, the ageing Ibiza doesn’t feel as engaging as we remember. However, the VW Polo underpinnings are equally well suited to town driving, B-roads and the motorway.
Factor in the comfortable seats, and the Ibiza 30 Years is a stylish and smooth runaround. If you’re not desperate for a commemorative slice of SEAT history, though, it’s better to pick and choose the tech you want on a cheaper model.