The SEAT León (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈse.at leˈon]) is a hatchback small family car built by the Spanish car manufacturer SEAT since October 1998.
The first two León generations used two differing variants of the Volkswagen Group A platform, and shared many components with other Volkswagen Group cars. The third generation uses the Volkswagen Group MQB platform, also used by the Audi A3 Mk3, Volkswagen Golf Mk7 and Škoda Octavia Mk3.
The initial SEAT León (Volkswagen Group Typ 1M), launched in 1999, available only as hatchback, and the related saloon version was known as the SEAT Toledo. It was based on the Volkswagen Group A4 (PQ34) platform and, as such, shared many components in common with other VW Group models such as the Volkswagen Golf Mk4, Bora and Audi A3. As SEAT's first C-segment model as part of the VW Group, the León Mk1 was marketed as a sportier and cheaper variant of the Golf. To reinforce the sporty image, the vehicle had slightly more aggressive looks. The more expensive versions were equipped with relatively more powerful internal combustion engines, along with firmer suspension to improve handling. In the interior, the dashboard was derived from that of the first-generation Audi A3.
The original "León 20VT" (which later became known as the "Cupra" and then the "FR") had a 1.8-litre Turbo with 132 kilowatts (179 PS; 177 bhp), and the "León Cupra R" 154 kilowatts (209 PS; 207 bhp), later becoming 165 kilowatts (224 PS; 221 bhp). It became first available in only three body paints (red, yellow, black), picked as an homage to the colors of both Spain's and Germany's national flags referring back to the roots of the joint project the model originally was.