22nd Feb 2008, 17:57
Not a very good pre delivery inspection! Sounds like car has been resprayed, not a good sign if paint is on the window. If it's a new car, question why its there? Looks like your problems are are just starting, couldn't wait to get rid of my Leon.
17th Mar 2008, 09:53
The touch up paint was a "drip" rather than overspray. I have to agree though it was a bit mysterious. No signs of the car being resprayed as far as I can see. However, it doesn't really matter long term as I have the car on a three year lease with Seat, so if there are issues or problems, I give it back for an agreed minimum payment and that's that, not my problem.
I have done 1500 miles now, no problems and the economy is slowly improving. Quite happy with the car now, although still notice condensation in the headlights which clears pretty quickly. A number of Leon owners websites have reported this issue so I am inclined to leave it for the moment, and if it gets worse I'll get replacement lights at the first service.
Only issue that does bother me is the short gearing does make the car a little noisy at high speed. Its perfect at "A" road speed (55-65mph) but if you go much above that speed, you do notice the noise. However, the eight speaker stereo is a great help in these situations!
18th Mar 2008, 02:45
It seems condensation in the headlights is a 'Seat thing'. Ibizas, Cordobas, you name it the headlights mist up. I've given up trying to find fixes for mine. Just expect them to mist up in the cold and damp and clear when its warm.
16th Jul 2008, 11:23
I bought a new 2006 1.6 Seat Leon Sport Up. Initially I thought it was a great car. Electric everything, privacy glass on the rear windows and 17" wheels. Unfortunately I stepped from an Audi A2 straight into it. Same day, perfect. The little Audi was made of aluminum and weighed roughly 970kg. It only had a 75bhp engine but 125lb ft of torque so chopping down through the box for power was never an issue. The Leon on the other hand has less torque 109lb ft and a lot more weight. Gear shuffling is a must. 7/10 for the engine potential.
About the suspension, if you buy a sporty car you are going to get a firm ride. I love the handling of the car. Though the over-pricey 225mm tyre's might be a factor too. The Audi was an awful car with the suspension rock hard whereas I find the stiffened Leon suspension a whole lot more forgiving. It stops and steers brilliantly though I can see no benefit of the Traction Control. 9/10 for the handling.
Though the radio is fine with its eight speakers it is sad I have to listen to it uncomfortably loud as I use it to drown out the rattles. There is one in the dashboard another in the drivers door and another (most infuriating one) from the seat belt anchor point at my head. I have left the car into the Seat dealer several times but every time they claim not to hear anything. As the warranty is up I am going to buy a Haynes manual and strip it down to find the problems myself, alternatively chop it in and buy something (not Seat) else. 5/10 for fit and finish.
There is a problem with the boot catch on my car but I have heard people with Skodas having the same problem. The boot needs to be slammed hard for it to lock properly. Both are VAG so I guess the problem is with the majority of the all their cars. 6/10 for quality control.
My first car was an old Leon model, bought new. It was a brilliant car. No problems at all. Seat was a bit poor back then so they (VAG) lifted a dashboard out of an Audi A3 and stuck it straight in. I had a head on collision with a LWB Transit van. Though the car was in bits the doors opened fine as the crash damage was absorbed in the engine bay, up over the doors with rippling in the roof. Definitely a selling point for me.
It has a lot going for it but there are annoying little faults which would put me off buying another Seat, until the new Leon is launched anyway. 6.5/10.
24th Feb 2010, 09:23
I am the original poster. With two years and around 13000 miles covered, all is going well with one exception...
The clutch started juddering around Christmas and when I got it serviced, the mechanics identified the fault and suggested the clutch needed replacement. Seat agreed to do this under warranty (owing to age and low mileage). Problem was traced to semi-seized release bearing and the clutch was replaced.
However following this, the problem remains and in fact has got a little worse. The car is going back for a second replacement clutch in two weeks (thus losing me another day off work) which is highly frustrating. Having changed clutches in the past, I suspect the garage only greased up the errant bearing and reassembled everything "as was" which quite frankly is a waste of everyone's time. Car is great but despite good customer service, I'm not entirely convinced the technicians are as good as they could be.
Either way, if it's not 100% after this, I'll be going back to the Japanese.
21st Oct 2010, 19:32
Any half wit mechanic will know a release bearing, if seized, will cause a squealing noise, not judder on engagement.
Had the same poor warranty repairs myself with Seat UK; said this was done, bla bla, and nothing fixed.
Customer services were useless!
19th Jul 2015, 18:24
Original poster back again - yes I still have it seven years after first purchasing it. And you know what? Touch wood it has been as good as gold in that time. Routine maintenance and tyres, that's about it. Oh and for some reason the rear left brake bulb goes every year, but all other bulbs are original.
Recommended? Absolutely. I never expected to keep it this long and have nearly changed it a few times, but few cars around appeal to me. Am going to run it until it won't run no more and probably buy a new one as I quite like the look of the new Leon.
9th Mar 2017, 14:21
Original poster again...
Just celebrated nine (yes, nine) years since I first bought the car. I keep looking at changing it, but I keep returning to old faithful and don't think I could sell it now.
78000 miles covered, no major faults of note over and above both headlight bulbs going over winter. Not complaining, I think getting nearly a decade out of a bulb is perfectly acceptable! Easy to change both, five minutes to do.
One niggly fault has appeared - when I open the door remotely, sometimes the driver's door won't open. It opens OK with the key, so something's misbehaving somewhere. The problem is when I get it checked, it always behaves itself so I will live with it as it's not a big problem.
The only other thing is a tile came off a neighbour's house and put a lovely dent in the wing. I have managed to secure a good secondhand wing in the right colour, so this weekend will probably be spent replacing it. Looks like quite a lot of the car needs dismantling to replace the wing though, so I will be getting better acquainted with the car over the weekend.
Other than that - 40 MPG, reasonable insurance costs and (touch wood) excellent reliability in a nice looking bodyshell. I'd be happy to recommend one to anyone based on my experience. It certainly proved to be a lifesaver for my wife when her far newer Fiat 500 Twinair enjoyed one of its periodic strops.
24th May 2017, 11:36
Changed the wing, actually not too bad. A lot has to come off, but it's only torx screws. Surprised me how many! Plus the little side window which is meant to be a nightmare to do, but with a trim removal tool I found it pretty easy.
Central locking issue has resolved itself. I noticed one of the drain plenums was a little blocked, so I cleared it and it has been OK since. Apparently water can overflow into the car and affect the control unit for the locking. The warm weather we have had in the UK has dried it all out and it's all back to normal. Bit odd but not complaining.
Brakes next! On its second set of pads and due for another I think. Discs too as they are starting to look a bit world weary, but having done this job on other cars, I shouldn't have any issues doing that.
Overall a good, solid old faithful; shame about the cosmetic scratches, car park dents and stone chips which bug me, but what do you expect after a decade in a city? Am starting to think that it would be a good first car for my daughter who turns 17 next year - if nothing else we know its history so know it's been (mechanically) looked after!