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SEAT will spend 3.3 billion euros between 2015 and 2019. The VW-owned brand’s executive committee president Jürgen Stackmann said the investment is earmarked for promoting new vehicle development, R&D projects at the SEAT Technical Centre (CTS) as well as equipment and facilities in its Martorell factory.

The investment will go towards launching four new vehicles in the next two years. “These models are part of an ambitious plan to continue to strengthen the brand and boost sales, which have been growing consistently since 2013. The spending on innovation ensures competitiveness and employment, and secures the future,” Stackmann said.

The first model of SEAT’s offensive will be a compact SUV, a first for the brand. The car will reach European showrooms in the first half of next year. The Spanish brand showed of the 20V20 crossover concept at Geneva earlier this year, and that could preview the upcoming SUV.

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SEAT is the only carmaker which, bolstered by its own technical centre, has the capacity to design and develop vehicles in Spain. In the last five years, the company has spent 1.4 billion euros on R&D.

The CTS is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. It was responsible for developing famous models such as the Leon, Ibiza, Toledo, Alhambra, Malaga, Marbella, Cordoba, Altea and Arosa, among others, in the four decades. In addition, CTS participates in VW Group projects and has developed and implemented modern tech, ecological Ecomotive engines and systems that enable car connectivity.

Today, it occupies 200,000 square metres, and by the end of the year will employ 1,000 engineers, after the addition of 100 new staff in recent months. Spain PM Mariano Rajoy and Dr Francisco Javier Garcia Sanz, member of the Volkswagen AG board, joined Stackmann during a recent visit to the technical centre.

SEAT 20V20 concept from Geneva 2015