SEAT Ateca X-Perience to Preview More Rugged Version at the Paris Motor Show

An off-road-oriented Ateca SUV seems like a good idea, but why didn’t they make it like that in the first place?

Showcasing the go-anywhere potential of its compact SUV, SEAT will introduce the Ateca X-Perience study to the Paris Motor Show crowds to gather feedback for a more off-road-oriented version.

The model's increased off-road capabilities are due to a higher ground clearance, a firm suspension setup, all-road tires fitted to 18-inch alloy wheels, as well as the 4Drive permanent all-wheel drive system with Haldex clutch and advanced XDS traction control. The Ateca X-Perience features two additional traction control settings, for snow and off-road, while the Hill Descent Control function helps when negotiating steep descents.

The vehicle stands out from regular Ateca models thanks to its scratch-resistant matte olive green exterior paint with orange details, chromed roof rails, redesigned bumpers, black wheel arch moldings, a rear roof spoiler, and mud flaps mounted to the rear bumper.

Inside, the X-Perience features a coffee and green color scheme, sport seats upholstered in suede leather, orange stitching on the steering wheel, seats and the off-road gearstick, X-Perience logo on the front door steps, and protective rubber floor mats.

SEAT says the idea behind the Ateca X-Perience is simple: while regular Ateca users are going to drive for 95 percent of their time on asphalt and the remaining 5 percent in off-road and on snow, the X-Perience should see 75 percent normal use and 25 percent off-road.

A show car for now, the Ateca X-Perience is motivated by an existing powertrain: a 190 PS (187 hp) 2.0-liter TDI engine mated to a 7-speed DSG gearbox with steering wheel shift paddles. A production model based on this study seems like a safe bet, with a launch probably scheduled for next year.