The Volkswagen Group’s historical appetite for swallowing up car firms means it has inevitably ended up with a few inter-company rivals. 

The lower medium sector our Leon occupies is arguably the most competitive, and the competition is just as hot in-house as it is externally. Other than the Leon, the three big lower medium players in the VW Group are the Golf, the Audi A3 and the Skoda Octavia.

It would be wrong to suggest that our mid-spec diesel Leon would go head-to-head with a top-end A3, but there’s scope for crossover with fleet Golf buyers, while Skoda has always borne the budget badge, so it’s more of a direct competitor.

All four cars are available with the same 105hp 1.6-litre TDI diesel engine and can be had in mid-spec SE guise with similar levels of kit.

Look at the like-for-like cost-per-mile figures and you’re left with 43.5ppm for the A3, 42.5ppm for the Octavia, 41.5ppm for the Golf and 40.7ppm for the Leon.

On costs alone – and when you bear in mind they’re all basically the same car underneath  – the Seat is something of a no-brainer. The CPM?also puts the albeit larger Skoda to shame.