A crossover is "almost tailor-made" for Seat and would fit very well with the brand's image, said chairman Jurgen Stackmann.

"We know with the success of Leon what this car should look like," he said adding  that no final decision on production had been made "but it's not far off."

"We have to make sure it [a crossover] is profitable and sustainable - it's a big decision for investment," said Stackmann.

Just adding models to a brand's portfolio doesn't necessarily lead to more sales, he noted.

"There is a lot of potential in maximising what we already have - there is plenty of choice there already," he said. The danger of adding more models is that customers would "drop one and buy one" while adding complexity to the range made it more difficult for sales staff.

"The dealer network is underestimated in the industry," said Stackmann. "Get it right and you sell more cars."

The UK and Germany had shown how sales could grow with the Volkswagen group unit's existing line-up; sales in Germany grew more than 20% in 2013 for the second successive year while UK sales were up by almost 17%.

"Leon has made our brand definition much clearer," said Stackmann. "It shows what we can do with German engineering and Spanish design and lust for innovation."