Seat Alhambra chosen over premium car makers

In its annual fleet car awards, the magazine chose just two premium German winners out of 11 awards with the likes of Spanish-based Seat and US-owned Ford taking home three between them.

The Seat Alhambra, a seven-seat people carrier, took home the best MPV award while the Ford Fiesta and new Ford Focus won the best small car and best lower medium car awards respectively.

The cars were judged on their suitability as business cars, service from manufacturers and, more importantly, the cost of running them as business cars.

The Fleet Awards readers praised the Ford Fiesta’s ‘excellent running costs’ and the low cost of running a Ford Focus.

However, it also highlighted the way Ford has closed the gap on more expensive manufacturers by bringing ‘premium technology to the mass market’.

Price from £9,000 and £14,000 respectively, the Ford Fiesta and the Ford Focus both offer road tax-free diesel models, labelled ‘Econetic’ by the manufacturer.

The Ford cars were also praised for their repair costs, impressive fuel economy and strong residual values by readers of the awards.

Meanwhile, the Seat Alhambra, whose prices start from £23,500, was the overall winner of the seven-seat category because of its low running costs.

Fleet News said: ” The seats are easy to fold flat, adding to the car’s versatility, while good road performance, competitive costs and low CO2emissions combine to make the perfect package.”

The stylish MPV, which has picked up a string of awards since its 2010 launch, delivers CO2 emissions of just 146g/km in the most efficient diesel iteration.

This means some models fall into Band F of UK road tax and are liable for charges of just £120 for the first year – one of the lowest rates available for a seven-seat car.

The new Seat Alhambra is on sale now at the Perrys Seat dealership in Aylesbury.