The Altea by Seat is made by the Spanish car manufacturer SEAT and offers a compact MPV. It has been manufactured since the year 2004. Walter de Silva, an Italian, designed the vehicle and it was launched in the year 2004 as an example of the new corporate look for SEAT. A third generation called the Toledo, was exactly the same except it had a larger boot.
There is an extended version of the model available called the Altea XL. It was presented at the Paris Motor Show of 2006. The Altea free track that offers 4 wheel drive was released in the year 2007.
While the Altea came out several years after most of its competitors, it was still expected to sell quite well. It actually exceeded the expectations and there were over 31,000 units sold in the very first year.
The Altea is a family vehicle offering 5 seats. It attempts to look sportier than many of its competitors on the market. It uses the A5 platform from Volkswagen. One of the more unusual design features of the vehicle is the windscreen wipers that are “vertical parked.” This design is supposed to improve safety for pedestrians. The wipers will disappear in the window around each screen side. The effect of this is a windscreen that is completely clean, but does mean that the pillars are a bit wide and it causes a blind spot.
6 trim levels are offered, the Essence, which is not available in the United Kingdom, the Reference, the Reference Sport, the Stylance, the FR, and the Sport, which is also not available in the United Kingdom.
There are internal combustible engines available for the models with the top of the range FR offering a 2.0 turbocharged direct injection model. It delivers 125 kilowatts and has been available since the month of April in 2006. Depending on the market and the engine, there are 4 gearboxes available including a 5 speed manual, six speed manual, 5 speed automatic, and a six speed or a 7 speed direct shift.
The car got its name from the city of Altea in Spain.
Altea XL and Free Track
The Altea XL is a longer variant of the regular SEAT Altea. It is a 5 door compact MPV that has a larger luggage capacity when compared to the standard version of the Altea.
The Free Track is similar to the XL, but is designed to be more of a compact SUV. The features of the Free Track include a raised suspension to provide an increased ground clearance, plastic wheel arches, larger bumpers made of plastic, and sill extensions. All of these things increase the dimensions of the exterior.
Each of the Free Track versions have a Haldex Traction, except for the Turbocharged Direct Injection version. These are based on the 4 wheel drive. The four wheel drive versions are called SEAT Altea 4 as well.
In both Russian and Mexico, the Free Track is marketed under the same name of Seat Free Track. While the Free Track is available in four wheel drive, it is not marketed as being an SUV. However, the Free Track could easily be seen as competition for some of the other marques smaller SUV models.
There are internal combustion engine choices available as well and these are almost the same ones that are available for the regular Altea.
When the vehicle was first launched it was available in an intense yellow that was quite uncommon. This same yellow color was also seen on models that were featured in several promotional brochures. The color was discontinued in 2010.