Seat enters electric race with IBE concept

The Jaguar C-X75 was the undoubted star of the Paris Motor Show last week. The stunning supercar was one of the bigger shocks at the show, and the stand certainly proved popular with the world’s press once it was revealed.

However, it was another concept car that we were particularly impressed with – the Seat IBE concept.

If you feel like you’ve seen it before, it’s because you probably have. The IBE was first revealed in Geneva in March as Seat’s latest compact sports coupe.

However, it has been given an update and appeared at Paris as a car much closer on the road to becoming a production model.

The car itself is excellent. The sporty styling looks production ready, and particularly pleasing was the low, wide stance in comparison to one of Seat’s most popular cars, the Ibiza.

Unlike the Ibiza, the IBE features a 2+2 seating configuration and sleek, sporty lines, making it look like it is ready to burst into action.

And when it does, it will be both frugal and efficient thanks to the all-electric drivetrain comprising a 75kW electric motor delivering 102bhp.

This is good for a 62mph sprint of 9.7 seconds and a top speed of 100mph. The range is around 81 miles, making the IBE ideal for European cities.

The technology is in place, and the car does look ready for production with the exception of the razor-thin LED headlamps. Seat is also making noises about steering wheel touch controls and a host of other gadgets including Apple-style apps for the navigation system and entertainment centre.

We’d love to see it in action, and if Seat is going to enter the soon-to-be competitive market we’d love to see the IBE make an appearance.

But it isn’t just the prospect of a production model that is pleasing us, because according to Seat Head of Design Luc Donckerwolke:

"Many of its elements describe our design language going forward. And it demonstrates how well driving pleasure and ecology come together at Seat. Driving will be lots of fun in the electric age, too – at least it will in a Seat."

This means future Seat models could be influenced by the IBE concept, which would easily translate onto an Ibiza or Leon and continue to add an air of style and sportiness to the Spanish manufacturer’s model range.

While the Jaguar supercar drew admiring glances from all quarters at the Paris Motor Show, the little Seat sports car concept could beat it to market in one form or another, and we’ll look forward to the day when we can get behind the wheel of one of the underated gems of the show.