SEAT Ibiza Review 2022

SEAT Ibiza At A Glance

Honest John Overall Rating
Recent updates mean the SEAT Ibiza is one of the best small hatchbacks you can buy today. Its 1.0-litre petrol engine is punchy yet economical, while improvements to the interior might be enough to make you think twice about a Volkswagen Polo. It's also one of the most practical cars in its class.

+Excellent 1.0-litre petrol engine. Calm and comfortable ride quality. Big boot. Improved infotainment from 2021.

-A Ford Fiesta is more fun to drive.

New prices start from £17,440, brokers can source from £16,028
Insurance Groups are between 11–17
On average it achieves 79% of the official MPG figure

The SEAT Ibiza is the sporty, youthful hatchback of the Volkswagen Group line-up, yet the fourth-generation model is more grown up than ever before. Launched in 2017 and pretty comprehensively updated (at least in terms of interior quality) in 2021, the Ibiza represents excellent value for money, boasts best-in-class versatility and is good – if not thrilling – to drive.

Mechanically speaking, the SEAT Ibiza is almost identical to the Volkswagen Polo and Skoda Fabia. However, this Ibiza is a smidgen shorter than the model it replaces but, narrow garage owners please note, it is 87mm wider and has a slightly longer wheelbase. This means benefits for ride comfort and interior space.

The Ibiza isn't a particularly compelling car to drive but if you prioritise refinement and practicality over out and out cornering dynamics then this will very much be the small car for you. Given the demands of most small hatch buyers, SEAT has made the right call on this. The ride quality is first rate and the soft suspension irons out the roughest of roads with ease. Even potholes are dealt with a satisfying, suppressed thump.

The cabin is large enough to fit four adults (just) and the seats provide excellent levels of back and upper leg support. Storage is also plentiful, with deep door bins and a useful scattering of cup holders.

The 355-litre boot is huge for a car of this size and far superior to anything you'll find in either the Ford Fiesta or even Ford Focus hatch. There’s no three-door SC version of the Ibiza with this generation, which is no great loss as most buyers opted for the five-door hatch anyway. It also means you get the practicality of the five-door regardless of which trim you choose.

The engine range encompasses three and four-cylinder petrols, with the sweet spot being the 1.0 TSI. The turbocharged three-cylinder petrol is one of the very best and can be specified with 95PS or 115PS (later 110PS), and both will return around 50mpg. A 150PS 1.5 TSI and a 1.6 TDI with 80PS or 95PS was also offered on pre-facelift examples, but these were dropped from the range when it was streamlined in 2021.

As an overall package, the Ibiza is a very good small car. It's supremely comfortable and practical, while few of its rivals can match its outstanding petrol engines. 

The only area that lets the side down is the spec. Indeed, standard equipment levels are meagre, which means you’ll have to pay extra to get essentials like DAB audio, touchscreen navigation and cruise control. Like-for-like, the Ford Fiesta and Suzuki Swift represent better value for equipment, though the SEAT does balance this with low running costs.

Looking for a second opinion? Read heycar's SEAT Ibiza review

Ask Honest John

Best small car for arthritis sufferer?
"I now suffer with arthritis an looking for a small easy to drive second-hand hatchback. I don't do a lot of mileage. I am four foot 10 inches in height and currently drive a Skoda Fabia but finding it increasingly difficult and heavy to drive. Can you suggest a replacement car?"
I'd suggest trying the Skoda Citigo, SEAT Mii or Volkswagen Up. The cars are mechanically identical and their small size makes them very easy to manoeuvre, they're all cheap to run and spacious for their size. If you fancy something the same size as your current car, it might be worth having a look at the current SEAT Ibiza or Volkswagen Polo. They both have light controls and can also be specified with an automatic gearbox that means you don't have to worry about operating the gearstick and pressing the clutch pedal. They're also roomy for their size, but are more comfortable than the cars I mentioned earlier.
Answered by Russell Campbell
What does it cost to change the cam belt on a hatchback?
"How much does it cost to change a cam belt on a SEAT Ibiza?"
Around £500-£600 at a SEAT dealer or in the region of £300-£400 if you use an independent garage.
Answered by Dan Powell
What's the best used car for £10,000?
"I’m looking for a used car with low mileage for my son’s partner. It needs to be reliable, reasonably stylish and preferably one owner. Any thoughts? Thank you."
A Ford Fiesta's a pretty safe used car choice. It's stylish, reliable and there are plenty about so you can be picky about condition. Also consider a SEAT Ibiza or Volkswagen Polo.
Answered by Andrew Brady
What small, petrol cars have a big boot?
"I currently have a Mazda 3, which my son will be taking over. I need to replace this with a much smaller car (in length) due to parking space restrictions at home. I'm thinking of a 5-door MINI, but I need a large boot. My other son plays cricket and has a large cricket bag. Do you have any recommendations for a small, manual, petrol or hybrid car? I'm looking for no more than five years old and would ideally like to pay around £10,000 or less. Thank you."
A SEAT Ibiza 1.0 TSI would be a good car for your needs. It has one of the largest boots in its class and measures roughly four metres in length. A budget of £10,000 should get you a 2018 model: We ran one for six months and were very impressed with its comfort and fuel economy:
Answered by Dan Powell
More Questions

What does a SEAT Ibiza cost?

Buy new from £16,028(list price from £18,205)