Seat Alhambra taken off sale but VW Sharan sticks around

The long-serving Alhambra MPV will end production at the end of this month after a decade on sale, Seat has confirmed.

The Ford Galaxy rival has been produced at the Volkswagen Group’s AutoEuropa plant in Portugal since the first generation was launched in 1995. It was produced alongside the near-identical Volkswagen Sharan for the same period.

Despite the Alhambra’s production coming to a close, Autocar understands Volkswagen will continue producing the Sharan for a limited period once production restarts after the coronavirus pandemic. That car will only remain on sale until the end of 2020, however.

Seat issued a statement on the Alhambra’s production end, saying it is “reviewing the suitability of older models to ensure we’re fit and sustainable for the future.” 

‘As part of this strategy we’re focusing on new and electric models such as the Seat Leon plug-in hybrid and Cupra Formentor plug-in hybrid crossover coupé and will be removing older vehicles from sale with newer, cleaner models to replace them in the future.”

The large MPV market has long suffered at the hands of SUVs, with a growing number of seven-seat options available including Seat’s own Tarraco. However, the space and versatility the Alhambra offered meant there were enough sales from large families, fleets and private hire companies to sustain it until now.

Nearly half a million examples have found homes over the years.

A direct replacement for the Alhambra and Sharan isn’t currently on the cards, with the Volkswagen Group looking to novel designs such as the electric Volkswagen ID Buzz to carry the torch for MPVs.