Both Keys Failed - Who Cares

Apr 7, 2021
I guess I won't be part of this forum for long as I'm getting rid of my Cupra Ateca in 2 months when it will be 2 years old. Just wanted to share this in the hope it will help someone. Two months ago a key failed (not the battery) whilst my wife was out in the car. I phoned SEAT as car is under warranty and less than 12000 miles. They arranged for a dealer to supply a new key and then program key and car together. 7 weeks after reporting the issue I took the car to the dealer (April Fools Day) - they had the car all day then phoned me to confirm the key is faulty so they would order a new one! 7 weeks!!!

Three days after this fiasco the spare key fails (not the battery) - at least this time I knew what to do so the alarm wasn't going off for half an hour (just 10 seconds) and I got the car home. I phoned SEAT again and they said they would contact a dealer and ask them to order a key, send me confirmation etc. No confirmation, I phoned again and was told the dealer would contact me when the key has arrived. So, I have the car on my drive - can't drive it without the alarm going off so can't use it. No idea when the key will arrive (SEAT don't know either) so how many weeks will I be waiting? Meanwhile I pay for the car with no compensation and no courtesy car offered. Apparently it's not SEAT's problem, they aren't responsible for the warranty. Go figure!

I have found the attitude of those I speak to at SEAT, quite condescending and there's obviously no thought on brand loyalty or understanding of the cost implications. I had taken an option to extend my lease by 6 months - not going to happen now. I had found a good deal on the Formentor and was discussing options with the lease company. What do you reckon? SEAT will get their last 2 months payment and save the cost of a courtesy car. Well done but they won't get me leasing another SEAT/CUPRA for the next 3 years. So far I've managed to deter 2 mates from making the same mistake as me - like me they loved the car dynamics but expect the customer service that goes with a £40k car. Others do it better and that's where I'm gonna go. Good luck.
Apr 7, 2021
I had a Golf R Estate before the Ateca - obviously same running gear and in some ways the Ateca is more enjoyable to drive. However, there's a noticeable difference in the build quality. I've been the Head of Quality for a couple of renowned automotive engineering consultants and done niche vehicle projects for many of the major manufacturers. This gave me a lot of insight into which manufacturers take the quality of their vehicles and customer support seriously and it's not always the expensive ones. In truth, I didn't expect the Cupra to be up there with the best but for a 'new' brand looking for a foothold I did think they would try and that customer support would actually care. Lease prices are not cheap and I'm not willing to take the risk again - I can get the same performance and save £100 a month too. You live and learn. In case you were wondering who I saw as the best built and engineered cars with attention to every detail - Saab. Volvo and Audi next but some way off. Ford were very good, which may surprise some.

martin j.

Active Member
Feb 11, 2007
Appalling treatment but initially I would say by the dealer, where I worked you would have been in ASAP and if the key was available next day have supplied a courtesy car and had you;up and running in 24 hours. It’s not difficult to test a keys operation and of course if one works and one doesn’t, well what’s faulty, key or car?
Anyway good luck wherever you end up.


Full Member
Staff member
I prefer small family owned dealerships where their money is at stake rather than big ones which can take the Mick at times. Issues you can take up with Customer Services that aim to keep dealerships inline. My family owned Seat dealership did fix all of the build issues that I had. Moving locations fortunate enough to have another caring dealership. Customers Services back in 2016 certainly knew which were the rogues ones.... they subsequently went out of business. Tend to think the bigger dealerships subside their mistakes whilst the small ones can't afford to make them so customer care is at a higher level... prices might be higher thou. Nothing is free.
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