SEAT officially presented its new design to the Spanish government in January 2009, and the car people saw was one that seemed both familiar and a little new at the same time.
The SEAT León Twin Drive Ecomotive takes its exterior design straight from its conventional sibling, the León. Aside from a slightly more streamlined body, the León looks a lot like most European cars, which tend to be compact, sleek and practical. Just like the SEAT León, the León Twin Drive Ecomotive is a hatchback that resembles the Audi A3. The hybrid concept's front grill is small, and flowing contours outline the hood and spring out from the headlights to give the car a more aerodynamic feel.
The León Twin Drive Ecomotive is a two-door car, but the hatchback design gives the rear storage area plenty of space for cargo. SEAT has redesigned much of the back end of the León, which is where drivers will find a group of lithium-ion batteries that power the car's electric motor.
As far as hybrid instrument panels go, the dashboard of the León Twin Drive Ecomotive might look a bit conservative or even primitive. If you're accustomed to looking at photos of new hybrid cars packed with digital information displays that look as though they could give the driver every possible detail he or she could ever want, the instrument panel inside the León Twin Drive Ecomotive is relatively bare bones in comparison. Of course, there's the ever-reliable speedometer, which is, as you know, standard equipment on any conventional vehicle. It's located on the right side of the instrument panel. And in the center of the cluster you'll find another analog gauge that indicates engine speed in revolutions per minute (rpm). To the left of that indicator is another pair of gauges that display the fuel level and the car's coolant temperature. The León Ecomotive gauge cluster also includes a small digital readout on the left side of the display to provide the driver with useful information including the time, temperature, a digital vehicle speed readout and odometer features.
So, if the León Twin Drive Ecomotive looks slightly familiar on the outside, what's it like under the hood?