SEAT looking for a greener future 2

Spanish car manufactures SEAT have released plans for a set of electric and hybrid cars in the future.

The experimental wholly electric cars currently being developed by the company are the Altea XL and the Leon TwinDrive Ecomotive plug-in hybrid.

SEAT Leon TwinDrive Ecomotive

The Leon model in question is expected to be released as the next generation of the car. Fans can expect to take a closer look at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2011. There will not be just one variant of the Leon like the present model, a three door coupe and estate version is also being planned.

It will be able to drive with pure electric power for 30 miles when the vehicle is travelling at 75 MPH. The hybrid capabilities kick in when the battery begins to fall in power. Altogether, an average of 166 MPG and be achieved by the car whilst outputting just 39g/km of C02 emissions.

SEAT Altea XL Electric Ecomotive

Altea XL Electric Ecomotive will contain an 85kW electric engine. It will be able to reach around 84 MPH. The electric batteries will be practically located underneath the seats, providing more space for storage items.

Clever strategy

SEAT has been clever about their electric car strategy. Clearly demand hasn’t taken off as many have expected. There aren’t many on the road at present with many seeing the initial buying cost as an issue.

SEAT President Brit James Muir said that echoed the statements regarding the low demand and gave an insight into the strategy that they will take. He said: “In Spain, electric vehicle registrations were supposed to number 11,000 by now, but there are currently 197 on the road, so the demand clearly isn’t there. However, customers do want a more sustainable form of personal mobility, and their needs are diverse. We think a parallel strategy of developing two different technologies will put SEAT in the best position to meet their needs.”

Sales to increase

He continued to say that the sales of electric and hybrid vehicles are set to boom over the best part of the next decade.

“Our job is to make the VW Group’s resources available to the wider public,” he added. “We think electric cars will make up between three and five per cent of sales over the next five to eight years, but plug-in hybrid electric vehicles could be double that.”

Will the proposed green SEAT vehicles succeed? We’ll have to wait a long time to find out.