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SEAT Ibiza SC 1.2 TDI Ecomotive

Price: £13,490, CO2 emissions: 92g/km

SEAT is known for its hot hatches, but in recent years, bosses have been keen to show off the brand’s eco-friendly credentials.

The Ecomotive badge has been fitted to everything from superminis to people carriers, and brings low emissions and strong fuel economy. Latest to arrive is the cleanest SEAT yet: the Ibiza SC Ecomotive 1.2 TDI.

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It shares mechanicals with VW’s new Polo BlueMotion, and emits 92g/km and returns 80.1mpg.

To achieve these figures, engineers used every trick in the book. Stop/start, regenerative braking, an aero bodykit, longer ratios, a gearshift indicator and low-resistance tyres all feature. Plus, the newcomer is lighter than the car it replaces. But it’s let down by its three-cylinder diesel, which has to be worked hard to keep up with traffic. This hits refinement.

The three-door SC looks good, and at £13,080, is top value; the five-door is £410 more. The question is, do the savings make up for the car’s flaws?

Rating: ***

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