Almost four years ago Seat got a new CEO, James Muir, tasked with the job of creating a sustainably profitable division out of Volkswagen’s Spanish brand. Three years ago Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn publicly explained that the home of the Ibiza was getting its last chance, but Muir and a healthy shot of new investment and new product worked like a trick: 18 months later Winterkorn publicly stated his pleasure at Seat’s continuing turnaround, and earlier this month Muir was talking up the brand’s increased sales in the UK and Germany.
There’s more to be done, though. Muir has said that last year’s sales of 320,000 cars is half of what is needed for Seat to gain long-term success. It currently makes 15 models in seven model lines, and Muir believes that Seat ultimately needs to get to one million unit sales per year. The division is continuing its expansion into new segments in order to reach that target, a report in Autocar saying it has another model on the way as it seeks to “expand into every area of the crossover market.”