Quite surprisingly the best selling manufacturer in cars this year in the UK is SEAT, the Spanish company which is part of the Volkswagen group.

It is the fastest-growing car brand in the UK with sales of 8,343 cars in September and it easily eclipsed its performance for the same peak month in 2016 by 14 per cent (1,035 units), and saw its market share rise to almost two per cent, up from 1.56 per cent versus the same month last year.

Not only are these impressive figures they are against a back cloth of a new car market which has fallen back more than nine per cent year-on-year.

Sales of the Barcelona-based brand are now up just shy of 20 per cent year-to-date at 44,237, even though the market is down 3.9 per cent overall.

Its success is fuelled by two of its core pillars, the Leon and the Ateca. The Alhambra too, continues to deliver, with sales up 47 per cent year-on-year.

Fleet sales have been good to SEAT, they are up by 58 per cent. SEAT's drive on generating high quality new customer leads for its dealer network and ensuring that they are managed seamlessly and successfully brings its rewards.

Customer experience has become a key priority for the Spanish brand its focus on this area has paid big dividends.

Notably, SEAT’s UK sales growth has come even without the full impact of the New Ibiza which has only recently launched.

And having been behind the wheel of the new Ibiza recently customers are in for a treat when they try it out.

My model was the one litre Ibiza Xcellence which came in with all the kit at a price of just over £19,000.

But prices begin at just over £17,000 for the basic model and all the vehicles are good value or the money.

My one litre engine was the popular petrol one and as the general populous is turning away from the diesels these days is probably a wise choice. Who knows what the government has in mind if it is thinking of a new tax for diesel drivers or not?

But it gives you a combined 60 miles to the gallon and C02 emissions of 106 g/km. Extremely impressive.

Even though there is just the one litre engine don’t think it is a slow coach. Goes like a little rocket actually. Top speed is around 113mph and 0-62mph arrives under 11 seconds.

It handles like a dream and its got bags of class as well, with black Alcantara upholstery with contrast stitching; a Beats Sound System; 17" ‘Dynamic’ bi-colour machined alloy wheels; full LED Headlights 480; a start/stop system which many motorists finding it irritating. The list goes on.

SEAT have earned a great reputation over the years and there is the eagerly awaited Arona, baby brother to the SUV Ateca, which hits British showrooms later this year.

It has all the makings of a sure-fire hit in the booming compact crossover segment, with its striking looks, high levels of practicality, quality and technology, plus, keen pricing. SEAT’s innovative new ‘EASY’ offer is also likely to prove a boon for prospective Arona buyers, allowing them to find their ideal version in a clear, stress-free and time-saving way, by cutting through traditional range complexity in the purchase process with just three elements to worry about, namely, trim level, engine and colour.

Following its largest ever product offensive of four new models in quick succession, which is complete with the launch of Arona, SEAT will launch a further six models between 2018 and 2020, three of which will be all new, including a large, seven-seat SUV which arrives next year to take the brand onto an even higher plain.

Steve Catlin, SEAT UK’s head of sales, said: “By next month, we’ll have launched four new models in the space of 18 months.

“Our brand and latest range of stylish and affordable new cars are striking a chord with British buyers, and we’re delighted to be attracting more retail and fleet buyers.”

SEAT is the only company that designs, develops, manufactures and markets cars in Spain.

A member of the Volkswagen Group, the multinational has its HQ in Barcelona, exporting 81 per cent of its vehicles, and is present in more than 80 countries through a network of 1,700 dealerships. In 2016 it achieved worldwide sales of 410,000 vehicles.

SEAT employs more than 14,500 professionals at its three Spanish production centres where it manufactures the Ibiza, Leon and now Arona.

The company also produces the Ateca and the Toledo in the Czech Republic, the Alhambra in Portugal and the Mii in Slovakia.