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SEAT Ateca interior, tech and practicality

Comfort and visibility

Getting comfy in the Ateca is easy. There's lots of adjustment in the front seats with standard-fit height and lumbar controls. This plus the clear driver's dials and tall seating position gives you a confidence-inspiring view of what's in front of you – although, like every car in the class, over-the-shoulder visibility isn't perfect.

Every model apart from the spartan entry-level S version gets all-round parking sensors, however, so you shouldn't find it too challenging to park the Ateca. SE trim and up also gets park assist, which can automatically guide the car into a spot.

Standard equipment

We'd suggest avoiding miserly S-trimmed cars and selecting at least SE spec. This includes 17-inch alloy wheels, all-round parking sensors, park assist, cruise control and climate control. You also get an infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. SE Technology adds fancy LED headlights, larger alloys and a built-in sat nav.

FR is the sporty trim with meaner-looking alloys and a sporty body kit. You'll find faux-suede upholstery and similar spec to SE Technology models. FR Sport adds larger alloys, digital dials for the driver, front leather sports seats and front seat heaters.

Xcellence is the top-level trim. You get extra chrome exterior detailing, adaptive cruise control, interior ambient lighting and a reversing camera, plus keyless entry and starting. Xcellence Lux adds even larger alloys and full leather upholstery. These were renamed to Xperience and Xperience Lux during the car's 2020 refresh.

We reckon the Ateca makes the most sense in the more affordable trim levels – SE is well equipped, while FR versions look more expensive than they actually are.

Infotainment and audio

Every Ateca – save for the barren S models – comes with an infotainment system, and all include Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. For the majority of buyers, that's all the functionality they'll require on a day-to-day basis.

Playing around with the Ateca's built-in software, the system is reasonably easy to get your head around. Shortcut buttons around the screen make it easy to jump between functions, although the most recent range-topping setups have removed the physical volume knob in favour of more screen space, which is a bit of a shame.

It's more responsive and modern-looking than similar setups found in the Toyota RAV4 or Honda CR-V, but both the Kia Sportage and Hyundai Tucson feel more up-to-date in use.

There's no option to upgrade the standard audio system to a branded version, but only discerning music buffs will find anything about the basic setup to complain about.

Rear seat space

The Ateca is an excellent choice for carrying rear passengers. Even with very tall adults back there, they'll only run short of legroom if the front seat is pushed all the way back. There's abundant headroom, too, thanks to the Ateca's boxy shape.

Wide-opening rear doors make access easy, and also mean wrestling a bulky child seat into the standard-fit Isofix anchors is mostly painless. Parents will also be thankful for the car's taller height, so they won't have to stoop beneath a low roof to get their kids buckled up.

In isolation, then, there's nothing wrong with the Ateca's rear-seat provision. Only if you compare it to the Skoda Karoq do some shortcomings become more noticeable – predominantly the fact the Czech car somehow gets even more legroom from the same interior layout, and comes with optional flexible seating that can actually be removed entirely for maximum cargo-carrying ability.

Boot space

You get 510 litres of cargo area in front-wheel-drive Atecas, with four-wheel drive models measuring in at 485 litres. These are hefty figures but they don't take into account the fact the cargo area is large and square, extending far above the parcel shelf, which means in practice the Ateca is great for carrying bulky or awkwardly shaped items.

The bootlid opens wide, leaving a large, square opening for excellent access and a minimal lip to lift heavy items over. Your four-legged friend will also appreciate the accommodation in the back of the Ateca, while also not having to jump as high as some rivals to get in.

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