SEAT Mii review - Engines, performance and drive

The SEAT Mii isn't very powerful, but it's still great fun to drive

The Mii is great fun to drive, thanks to its nimble handling and direct steering. 

Excellent visibility and light controls make the Mii a breeze to drive around town, while the low levels of road and wind noise mean it's equally as good on motorways – and that’s quite unusual for a city car. City cars sometimes struggle on ride quality, but even on larger 16-inch wheels with firmer springs and dampers, the Mii FR Line feels busy but never crashy or too unsettled.

The Mii's ride is also very comfortable, but the soft suspension means the little SEAT has a tendency to lean quite heavily into turns – something the FR Line model’s slightly firmer suspension is designed to address, though you'll hardly notice the difference most of the time. The FR Line version feels sharp on the road and responds well to inputs, but firmer dampers also offer plenty of comfort.

The precise steering makes the most of the sharper suspension, so with the more powerful engine the Mii is surprisingly good fun to drive, with a precise five-speed manual to tap into that 74bhp power output. 

Engines

There are no diesels available in the Mii range, but that’s no problem, as the 1.0-litre petrol line-up offers surprisingly punchy performance (especially the 74bhp engine), as well as decent efficiency.

The 74bhp Mii has a 0-62mph time of 13.2 seconds. This doesn't sound very fast, but given the Mii's minuscule dimensions, it feels much quicker around town and rarely seems underpowered. It does, however, need to be revved hard to get the best out of it, but either way, we like this particular engine's lively, off-beat warble as the revs increase - another aspect of the Mii that gives it a real sense of character. 

On test, the SEAT sprinted from 0-60mph in 12.1 seconds – faster than the official claims. The downsized, naturally aspirated engine produces only 95Nm of torque relatively high up the rev range at 3,000rpm, yet thanks to the five-speed manual’s short gearing the Mii FR Line’s in-gear times were respectable; it took 15.1 seconds to cover 50-70mph in fifth.

Performance from the 59bhp engine is even less impressive on paper, but in reality it still feels surprisingly lively on the road – and that’s in spite of a claimed 0-62mph time of 14.4 seconds.

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