Flabbergasted News & Views → Seat IBe. It Never Happened.

I’ve always maintained that the Range Rover Evoque sold in such big numbers not because it was cheap, or well-equipped or because it was designed by Victoria Beckham. No, it did sell stupendously because it never really changed from concept to production.

It was first introduced as LRX Concept at the North American Auto Show in Detroit in 2008 and it was then put into production in 2011, with the final version looking almost exactly like the original concept vehicle.

It worked. It looked futuristic back then, and it’s an 8-year old design that still looks fresh and crisp and cool today.

Concept cars are often showcased under the limelight with a body made of pink strawberry seeds and seats made of burgundy woven-linen-cotton and a diamond encrusted dashboard carved out of silver titanium dipped in gold.

And they they go into production in black plastic. With a gray body. And some more gray textile for the seats. It’s the market that demands it.

Some concept cars, like the Seat IBe you see here for instance, never make it past the design board. First introduced at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, the IBe (pronounce it like IBM not like Nike) is, or rather was, an all-electric zero emission concept vehicle powered by an electric engine located together with the power electronics under the bonnet, whereas the battery pack is, or rather was, placed at the back. It has, or rather had, 75 kW, which in plain English means around 100 HP, and 200 torques which means, or rather it meant, 9,4 seconds from stand-still to sixty and a top speed of 160 km/h. Which means 100 MPH. Yup. You read that right.

SEAT IBE Concept Geneva 2010

According to SEAT, the 18 kWh battery, has enough range “to cover all the daily mobility requirements of city life”. Or maybe not, as it turns out.

Seat IBe Paris

This very interesting concept car never was. Pity.

As you probably all know by now, Seat is owned by VW, and what with the emission scandal, I doubt if the German giant will have time to think about reviving this largely overlooked, albeit somewhat intriguing, concept electric hatchback.

Throughout my Alma Mater, as marketing people love to say it these days, I’ve studied languages, including Latin.

Well, my favourite Latin expression is Status Quo, which means “the state of affairs”, which basically means “things as they are”. No point fretting about it, no point worrying. VW will have to face the music, and that’s Status Quo.

And the automotive world occasionally gives bad news. It was sad when Saab died, it was sad when De Tomaso stopped making cars. And it’s kind of sad when a good-looking concept like the IBe ends up in the scrap heap.

I guess that’s also Status Quo.

seat-ibe-concept-2010-1 (1)

words: Alessandro Renesis

pictures: Seat



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