In-depth reviews

SEAT Arona - Reliability and safety

The SEAT Arona is a safe family car, but its Driver Power score is disappointing

Overall Auto Express Rating

3.8 out of 5

Reliability and Safety Rating

4.0 out of 5

Price
£22,430 to £29,230
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Like all modern-day SEATs – and their VW Group counterparts – every Arona should fit the bill as safe family transport. The Arona was awarded a full five-star Euro NCAP rating when it was retested in 2022.  It did better than the four-star results of the Honda HR-V and Vauxhall Mokka, but the five-star Toyota Yaris Cross tested under the same regime scored higher than the Arona across the board.

Every Arona gets tyre pressure monitoring, autonomous emergency braking (AEB), front and rear seat belt reminders, six airbags, Isofix child seat mounts and tiredness recognition. You’ll have to step up to Xperience trim to gain adaptive cruise control and the Xperience Lux for a Park Assist system and a rearview camera. It is a shame that blind spot monitoring isn’t standard like on the Volkswagen T-Cross, because it’s a helpful feature that’ll warn you of cars alongside you on the motorway.

SEAT had a disappointing result in the 2023 Driver Power survey, with the manufacturer coming in 23rd place out of 32 brands, while the Arona itself placed 59th out of 75 cars in the owner satisfaction poll. That puts it behind the Kia Stonic and Hyundai Kona, but ahead of the current Mokka.

It is mildly annoying that the entry-level SE and SE Technology models don’t come with an alarm as standard, meaning you’ll either need to pay around £200 to get one fitted as an option, or upgrade to FR trim and above.

Warranty

The SEAT Arona comes with an industry-standard three-year/60,000-mile warranty. While that doesn’t set any records, it’s on par with rivals from the rest of the VW Group (Skoda and Volkswagen included), as well as those wearing a Citroen or Peugeot badge.

Hyundai’s five-year, unlimited-mileage setup is good for those covering substantial distances, while Kia offers one of the longest guarantees in this segment, with its seven-year/100,000-mile warranty. Then there is the Toyota Yaris Cross, which can be covered for up to 10 years or 100,000 miles – although you will have to keep getting your car serviced annually at a Toyota main dealer to maintain the warranty over that extended period.

Servicing

SEAT offers a service plan at the point of sale, which covers the first two services. It costs just under £500 if you’re paying outright, or around £20 per month over 24 months. Included in the plan is a two-year warranty on all parts, a video report, a wash and vacuum, drop off and collection, and (if available at the dealer) a courtesy car.

Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    1.0 TSI SE Technology 1st Edition 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £18,730

Most Economical

  • Name
    1.0 TSI SE Technology 1st Edition 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £18,730

Fastest

  • Name
    1.5 TSI 150 FR Red Edition 5dr DSG
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £23,630
Online Reviews Editor

Max looks after the reviews on the Auto Express website. He’s been a motoring journalist since 2017 and has written for Autocar, What Car?, Piston Heads, DrivingElectric, Carbuyer, Electrifying, and Good Motoring Magazine.

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