The Seat Tarraco has been revealed, standing tall above the Ateca and Arona as the Spanish brand's first entry into the large SUV segment.
Essentially Seat's take on the Skoda Kodiaq and Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace, the Tarraco is based on the Volkswagen Group's ubiquitous MQB architecture, and also debuts the brand's new design language.
On 'Xcellence' and 'Style' trim levels, the Tarraco features full-LED headlights and tail-lights, with the frontal units featuring Seat's signature triangular daytime-running light signature, while the rear indicators feature a dynamic scrolling design.
As for the overall exterior design, you'd be forgiven for mistaking the Tarraco for a Tiguan, particularly from the back. Even the distinct crease along the shoulder line of the Kodiaq and Tiguan is carried over, continuing the strong family resemblance.
The Tarraco measures 4735mm long, making it 34mm longer than a Tiguan Allspace. Seat hasn't quoted width or wheelbase measurements, but we reckon it's a safe bet the Taracco will be almost identical to the long-wheelbase Tiguan.
Both five- and seven-seat layouts will be offered when the Tarraco goes on sale in Europe during the early stages of 2019, along with four turbocharged powertrain options – two petrol, two diesel.
Entry-level models will be powered by a 110kW 1.5-litre turbo petrol, sending drive to the front wheels via a six-speed manual transmission as standard. The other petrol option is a 2.0-litre turbo four making 140kW driving all four wheels through a seven-speed DSG auto.
Meanwhile, diesel options come in the form of two 2.0-litre oilers in different states of tune – an entry-level 110kW offered in manual with front-wheel drive or DSG with all-wheel drive, along with a 140kW version with DSG and all-wheel drive only.
Seat has confirmed the Tarraco will eventually be offered with "alternative powertrain technologies", indicating some form of electrification is in the pipeline, likely a plug-in hybrid.
Thanks to its MQB underpinnings, the Tarraco is also offered with a range of driver assistance and active safety technologies, including the standard fitment of autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection in Europe, along with lane-keep assist.
Available systems include blind-spot monitoring, traffic sign recognition, adaptive cruise control with traffic jam assist, auto high-beam, and emergency assist.
Inside, the resemblance to the Tiguan and Kodiaq continue, though there are some unique touches. There's a free-standing tablet-style infotainment system, which measures 8.0 inches in its largest configuration, while the company's new 10.25-inch Digital Cockpit instrument cluster can be optioned with an interface and design unique to Seat.
A horizontal trim element – finished in wood on the launch car – is said to 'emphasise the width' of the cabin, while the overall fit and finish is claimed to be at a "level of quality normally found in the premium sector".
There's some cool trims seen on the vehicle in the images, including a tweed cloth-like fabric for the seat inserts and door trims, brown suede accents, and the wood door trims that match the dashboard insert.
'Pre-sales' for the Tarraco will kick off in December for the European market, with a market launch scheduled for the "very beginning of 2019".
Volkswagen Group's local division doesn't have any immediate plans to re-introduce the Seat brand to the Australian market, ruling out the Tarraco for the time being.
However, our friends in New Zealand will get the Spanish crossover at some point in the near future, though exact timing is still to be announced.
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