That's not just a minor refresh.

The SEAT Ateca is entering its fifth year on the market and this means a refresh for the Spanish crossover is on the horizon. We have the latest batch of spy photos with the model showing it's getting considerable visual revisions.

This prototype wears a good amount of camouflage but is happy to reveal its redesigned front end. The front fascia will get a radiator grille with a new design pattern, while the headlights will be reshaped and will get new internal graphics. In addition, there will be modifications to the lower section of the bumper. 

Gallery: SEAT Ateca facelift spy photos

Our spy photographers told us this prototype is most likely testing a new engine and their educated guess is that there’s a new 2.0-litre diesel engine under the bonnet. It’s probably safe to assume the Spanish automaker is testing Volkswagen Group’s new TDI Evo with 150 bhp.

No other major improvements are planned for the model’s engine range. Word on the street is the current lineup will be massaged to meet the stricter European emissions standards but no new additions are planned.

The situation could be different when it comes to the performance Cupra Ateca. The sports crossover’s 2.0-litre TSI turbo engine could not be good enough to meet the requirements on the Old Continent and SEAT may be forced to replace it with a different powertrain. Rumours suggest there are two variants - VAG’s 2.0-litre twin-turbo diesel and the new 1.4-litre plug-in hybrid system first seen in the new Leon, Volkswagen Golf, and Skoda Octavia.

We believe SEAT will be ready to launch the facelifted Ateca towards the second half of this year. We’ll watch closely whether the coronavirus outbreak will change the brand’s debut plans for the compact crossover.

Photos: Automedia