SEAT Mii (2011-2020)

By Jpnathan Crouch

Models Covered:

3 & 5dr Citycar (1.0)


A superior sort of citycar, SEAT’s little Mii offered its Spanish brand a leading role in a sub-supermini segment also heavily influenced by its Volkswagen and Skoda design stablemates. The Iberian maker added a thoughtful value proposition to a car that’s undoubtedly spacious, frugal and clever. It makes an awful lot of sense as a used buy.

The History

A Mii. If you’ve ever played on a Nintendo Wii gaming console, then you’ll know exactly what that is. An extension of you – the fun, young, effervescent bubbly kind of you you’d like to be. Exactly the right kind of name, you might think, for a car that aims to create these same feelings in the dull mundanity of our everyday short journeying, city shopping and school run-dominated lives.

This name adorned the SEAT-branded version of what in the 21st century’s second decade was arguably the cleverest tiny runabout on the planet, the Mii sharing almost everything with a Volkswagen version of this same design, badged as the up! Nothing wrong with that. Today, most sub-supermini city runabouts are built around brand-sharing principles, something that back in 2011 SEAT was well familiar with as its previous - and very successful - entrant in this segment, the Arosa, had been another Volkswagen clone.

Things were a bit more difficult this time around though, for in this case, the Volkswagen Group’s citycar offering had also to be made available to Skoda, who badged it as the Citigo. To make this SEAT stand out, the Spaniards carefully pitched its value proposition to appeal to their traditional buyers, people who didn’t want a budget brand but liked the technology of a smart badge without the expense that usually goes with it. People who, in this model, bought into what, on paper at least, was citycar state-of-the-art. It sold in combustion engine form until 2019, when it was replaced by the full battery-powered Mii Electric, which sold until early 2021.

What You Get

The exterior design of this Mii follows a theme pioneered by the Peugeot 107/Citroen C1/Toyota Aygo model we first saw way back in 2006. So here again, you get a cheeky face with big headlights, a gently rising waistline and a glass rear tailgate. Differentiation over this model’s Volkswagen and Skoda clones is limited to restyling of the C-pillar, the bonnet and the boot. Just enough to give this SEAT its own identity. There’s a choice of three or five-door body shape and with either bodystyle, the comparatively big area of the rear side windows ensures great all-round visibility and the pop-out function you get with the three-door model makes the back a little less claustrophobic than it would otherwise be.

Up front, if you’ve tried the Volkswagen and Skoda versions of this design, the first impression you get is that this SEAT has a little more spark and vibrancy to its cabin finish. You sit behind a smart three-spoke steering wheel that’s fashioned from light magnesium but unfortunately isn’t adjustable for reach: it only moves up and down. It frames a simple, clearly designated instrument cluster with a trendily large speedometer, while in the middle of the dash, there’s a compact centre pod for many of the minor controls.

That only leaves luggage space. This Mii is only 2mm longer than SEAT’s previous Arosa citycar. Yet its 251-litre boot is double the size. This cargo bay will hold objects of up to 58cm in height, has four bag hooks and can feature a double storage net attachment to keep your eggs from mixing with your Iron Bru. And you can massively extend it by pushing forward the rear bench (unfortunately, it only split-folds on plusher variants) to reveal up to 951-litres – or 959-litres in the five-door version.

What To Look For

Most Mii owners we came across were pretty happy, but inevitably, there were a few issues. We came across a few reports of problems with the manual gearbox refusing to engage gear without double-de-clutching; check this on your test drive. There were various problems with the auto gearbox too. On manual models, the clutch can whine at high speed. The paint chips easily. And the daytime running lights seem prone to burning out. Otherwise, just check the usual things; alloy wheel scrapes and interior damage, and insist on a fully stamped-up service history.

On The Road

This SEAT’s chirpy three cylinder 1.0-litre petrol powerplant suits it perfectly – which is just as well as it’s the only engine choice on offer, though with a choice of either 60 or 75PS outputs. Three cylinder engines are, by their inherent nature, fun little things, cheeky and a little bit vocal, with busy, buzzy demeanour that plays with your subconscious and makes the car feel more alive. That's quite a task for a car that only packs a modest amount of punch.

Personally, we’d think twice about paying extra for the 75PS version, unless you particularly want the auto gearbox you can get with it: subjectively, after all, it hardly feels any faster, even if on paper, the 0-60 time improves from 14.4s to 13.2s and the top speed rises from as little as 99 to 108mph.

Around town, the thick A-pillars can limit visibility at junctions and roundabouts but there’s the peace of mind – if the original owner specified it – of the City Safety Assist system. It’s automatically active at speeds of below 19mph and the car can automatically brake to a halt by itself should there be an obstruction. Very clever.


With this Mii, SEAT at last had a class-leading citycar: the brand waited long enough for one. True, it’s a model that may not be uniquely Spanish, but then, nothing SEAT makes ever is. What matters is that it ticks all the important citycar boxes. As do, you could argue, the Volkswagen and Skoda versions of this same design. Which means your choice could come down to the value proposition on offer. Ultimately, it’ll come down to personal preference of course: your Mii always should reflect your personality. And you’ll find this one ready to do just that.