2017 SEAT Ateca FR is all show and no extra go

It looks just like a performance SUV, except it isn’t

Who said SUVs couldn't be stylish? Certainly not the folks from SEAT — just look at their newly-unveiled Ateca FR.

The latest addition to the Ateca family, the FR will debut at the Barcelona International Motor Show (May 11-21) as the range-topping version alongside the luxury-oriented XCellence trim.

As expected, the FR badge is said to bring "more dynamism and sportiness" to the Ateca compared to the XCellence grade. So how is the Ateca FR different from the Ateca XCellence, you ask?

Well, it clearly looks more sporty from the outside. Distinctive details include the 19-inch alloys shod with 245/40 R19 tires, black roof rails and window frames, glossy black grille, more aggressive bumpers, roof spoiler, aluminum-look side skirts and skid plate contours, as well as LED fog lights in FR design treatment. Obviously, FR logos are present at the front and rear.

Inside, the Ateca FR welcomes passengers with aluminum front door sills sporting the FR logo, a multifunction, leather-wrapped sports steering wheel, Alcantara sports seats, as well as an FR finish for the ceiling and door panels.

By now, you probably think the Ateca FR has a more powerful engine than those available for the standard model. That's not the case, unfortunately, with SEAT offering the FR with the same diesel and gasoline power plants from the regular Ateca. Those range from 148 hp (150 PS) to 187 hp (190 PS), including a new 2.0 TSI unit with 187 hp (190 PS). It's a similar approach to Skoda's with the Kodiaq Sportline.

The engines can be had with either manual or DSG transmissions, as well as four-wheel-drive. Dynamic Chassis Control (DCC) and progressive steering are also available.