Used SEAT Ibiza Review (2017-2021) MK5

Independent review by Peter Hayward from Driving Force

4-minute read

SEAT Ibiza Exterior Front

SEAT Ibiza (2017-2021)

Stylish, comfortable, and great fun to drive, it's clear to see why the SEAT Ibiza is so popular amongst young drivers

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  • Excellent practicality
  • Comfortable yet fun to drive
  • Efficient engines
  • Rivals are more affordable
  • Not the most generous equipment
  • Average interior quality
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What's the SEAT Ibiza like?

The latest SEAT Ibiza is so good that it has scored higher than the previously all-conquering Ford Fiesta in a number of comparisons.

And that shouldn't be a surprise when it now comes with five doors as standard, sharp and very Leon-like sporty styling, a big interior and excellent equipment. As if that wasn't enough, it's also a lovely car to drive.

All the various Ibiza models have been the company's bestsellers, and have all used the same underpinnings as the VW Polo and the Audi A1.

Those two might seem to have a quality edge over the not so little SEAT, but put them side by side, and compare on equipment and ability per pound, and the Ibiza is right up with both of them.

There used to be a bewildering number of models in the range, but this latest offering, which was launched in 2017, starts off with just eight.


Petrol engines are 1.0-litre and 1.5-litre turbos with a range of power outputs, and there's also the well-known VW group 1.6-litre TDI diesel.

The 1.0-litre starts with a non-turbo 73bhp that takes 14.2 seconds to get from 0 to 60mph but can cover 57mpg.

Then comes a 93bhp version of the same unit that does the sprint in 10.6 seconds and is capable of 54mpg, and then there’s a 108bhp version that reaches 60mph in 9.7 seconds and can do 52mpg.

Finally, there’s a more sporty version of the same 1.0-litre that comes with 113bhp. It gets to 60mph in a sharp 9.0 seconds and can still do 49mpg.

Top performer by some margin is the 1.5-litre turbo that’s only available in upper models. It covers the sprint from rest in a very good 7.8 seconds and yet can still reach 45mpg.

There are two versions of the 1.6-litre TDI diesel, both of which have excellent 61mpg economy. First there's a 78bhp version that reaches 60mph in 12.9 seconds, and then comes a 93bhp model, and it does the sprint in 10.9 seconds.

Apart from the rather slow lowliest powered 1.0-litre and the lower powered diesel, all offer decent to good performance in a straight line.

Driving Experience and Practicality

When it comes to a few corners, all SEAT Ibiza models handle beautifully, with well composed body movement and very good, informative, and tactile steering.
Peter Hayward

Ride comfort is also very impressive. Some earlier SEAT models had sporting setups that compromised the comfort, but the Ibiza has all that sorted, even when fitted with big wheels and low profile tyres.

Seat and steering column adjustment are excellent for all sizes of driver, and all the controls are right to hand, helping towards a car that is very easy to live with.


For now, there are just eight trim levels and even the lower order cars come equipped, with audio remote control for the excellent infotainment system, electric windows and mirrors, split fold rear seats, remote locking, plenty of airbags and electronic safety, and traction control.

Mid-range SE Technology adds air conditioning, sat nav, alloy wheels, front fog lights and metallic paint.

Find your SEAT Ibiza your way with CarStore

The SEAT Ibiza is a popular household name in its supermini class, thanks to its reliability, fun driving experience, and distinctive looks that stand out from a mile away. The Ibiza is surprisingly practical for such a compact car, offering way above average boot space, so not only is it great for young drivers, it's more than suitable for families, too.