Walter de Silva Wants SEAT to Make a Roadster

SEAT roadster concept 1 photo
Photo: SEAT
When Walter de Silva isn’t thinking about 7-seat SUVs and the Phaeton successor, the Volkswagen Group chief designer has roadsters on the mind. In a recent interview, he hinted that a roadster-type sportscar to rival the Mazda MX-5 could be on the way if approved for production.

“The question about a SEAT Spider in our Group is always open,’
de Silva told Top Gear magazine. Bentley Chief Designer Luc Donckerwolke also supports the idea, saying that “we all believe this car will bring the image that SEAT needs, and it would be a fitting car.”

SEAT is of course supposed to be the most sporting mainstream brand under the umbrella of the Volkswagen Group. While that’s been largely forgotten over the past years, the new Leon Cupra seems to have jolted everyone’s memory. What’s more, the company unveiled a speedster-type concept car called the Ibiza Cupster during May’s Worthersee GTI Meet.

A few journalists including Top Gear have been asked to drive the concept recently in the hope of a positive review that might help the project get off the ground. But, this isn’t SEAT’s first concept of this type. In 2001, the Spanish automaker unveiled the Tango Concept (pictured above) at the Frankfurt Motor Show. As far as we can remember, it was created by a team led directly by de Silva and looks remarkably similar to the Ibiza-based one.

Luc Donckerwolke admitted the SEAT roadster would need company approval after a business case is put together. A few years back, VW, Audi and Porsche were supposed to co-develop a sportscar based on the mid-engined BlueSport convertible concept, but the idea was scrapped. It seems very unlikely SEAT will be allowed to make such a low volume car all by themselves now.
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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