THERE is one overarching feeling that you get when you’re behind the wheel of the SEAT Arona and that is one of lightness.

The engine in our tester was light and lively, as was the steering and the manual gearbox.

That’s what makes the Arona instantly likeable, it’s easy-going and it feels like it’s on your side.

The Arona is the baby of SEAT’s SUV offering and clearly aimed at a young lifestyle market, not that it doesn’t have plenty of appeal for a lot of people besides.

There are plenty of options to choose from, with SE, SE Technology, SE Technology Lux, FR, FR Sport, Xcellence and Xcellence Lux.

That means that you can go from fun and functional up to fully-laden with your specs.

The varying specs include bells and buttons like adaptive cruise control, hill hold, auto lights and wipers, a tiredness recognition system, multi-collision braking, rear-view camera, keyless entry and start, wireless phone charger, parking system, blind spot detection and rear traffic alert.

So the Arona certainly isn’t left wanting – you can go as posh and as tech-packed as you like, really.

All engines – petrol and diesel – are turbo with stop/start tech.

Petrols come in the form of a 1.0 three-cylinder with either 95ps or 115ps, alongside a 1.5 with 150ps on the FR model.

The diesel is a 1.6 TDI with either 95ps or 115ps.

You can choose either a five or six-speed manual or the top-notch seven-speed DSG auto when it comes to gearboxes.

Whether you go petrol or diesel they are all pretty efficient – 57mpg is the on-paper figure on the 1.0 petrols, regardless of output, while the 150ps still gets to 55mpg and the diesels 70.

CO2 is from 105g/km to 115g/km.

We drove the 115ps version of the 1.0 TSI petrol and it’s nice and lively around town and has poke, though it does run out of steam sometimes when challenged with steeper inclines.

It’s frugal, we got 45mpg in town and on the cruise.

It is a lovely little drive all in all, as mentioned, with its light steering feel, and it handles sharply.

The Arona is a comfortable ride as well.

The interior is smart, especially on the FR model we drove and you get decent tech. SEAT has been allowed to catch up with its VW stablemates on this score and there’s now no such thing as a basic interior on these cars.

The rear space is a touch tight, but there’s a good size boot.

There’s really not much to fault the lively little Arona, it’s a friendly car and a pleasure to drive.

Prices run from £17,145 to £25,170.