SEAT's intention to continue its growth and offer 'auto emoción' in yet more market sectors has been demonstrated once again, with the announcement that it will produce two new models in the B-segment.
The B-segment, still one of Western Europe's largest market sectors with annual sales last year of 1,147,200 (source: AID), includes competitors such as the Ford Mondeo, Peugeot 407 and Toyota Avensis. SEAT S.A. President Erich Schmitt has confirmed that the company will enter into this market in 2009 with two variants: a saloon and an estate.
As with all SEAT models (with the exception of the seven-seat Alhambra, which is manufactured in Portugal), the new models will be built at the Spanish firm's ultra-modern Martorell plant, located close to Barcelona. The company also has a substantial research and development facility at this location – the Martorell Technical Centre – employing around 1,250 highly qualified staff. No other car manufacturer based in Spain has the capacity to design, develop and produce its own vehicles in the country.
Commenting to Spanish media representatives in Martorell, at the announcement of the new models, Erich Schmitt said: 'The assignment of these two new models to the plant in Martorell is an historic step for SEAT. By these means, we enlarge our current product range, which not only gives our clients the possibility to grow with the brand, but also enables us to increase the profitability of our dealer network thanks to the availability of these new models.'