The unveiling of SEAT’s first ever high performance estate, the Leon ST CUPRA, is the start of a new chapter in the CUPRA sub-brand. To the SEAT Leon CUPRA range, the new Leon ST CUPRA adds a new dimension by being a car for families, for work, for sport and for hobbies – in fact it is the ideal everyday sports car.
“The new Leon ST CUPRA is the perfect complement to our high-performance model line-up. The combination of refined performance and expressive dynamics with relaxed long-distance comfort and compelling utility make it utterly unique,” says Jürgen Stackmann, President of SEAT S.A. “The Leon ST CUPRA shows the SEAT brand values at their best. We are proud of the technical excellence and quality it conveys.”
In the UK, the new SEAT Leon ST CUPRA 280 will be available from May 2015 with its 2.0 TSI engine with dual injection and variable camshaft timing tuned to 280 PS, and with Dynamic Chassis Control (DCC), front differential lock, progressive steering, CUPRA Drive Profile and standard-fit full-LED headlights: moving on from the first generation CUPRA that was the SEAT Ibiza.
“The new Leon ST CUPRA is pure SEAT – emotion and performance, design and dynamics deliver driving fun mile after mile. It boasts state-of-the-art technology evident in its great precision, but also in its amazing efficiency,” stresses Dr. Matthias Rabe, Vice President for Research and Development. “We have invested a great deal in the fine details to ensure the Leon CUPRA has the same ride and the same athleticism in its estate form – but with plenty of additional utility.”
The CUPRA brand has always stood for power, performance, dynamics – and the new Leon ST CUPRA is no different, featuring optional DSG transmission, and shifting the car from 0-62mph in just 6 seconds (6.1 seconds with the manual gearbox), with a broad range of torque from 1,700 to 5,600 rpm guaranteeing that pulling power is impressive whatever you are doing.
And with all this power you would expect there to be some sort of compromise when it comes to fuel economy and gas emissions, but no: the new Leon ST CUPRA is astonishingly efficient with fuel economy of 42.8 (DSG) and 42.2 (manual) and CO2 figures of just 154 and 157 grams per kilometre respectively.
The components of the 2.0 TSI high performance engine are tuned to perfection, allowing it to react with spontaneity and ease to every touch of the accelerator pedal, creating a high rev sound to impress, aided by a sound actuator; the all-new power unit with its responsive turbocharger is packed full with hi-tech and groundbreaking features that includes a dual-injection system complemented under partial load by manifold injection to ensure maximum fuel savings; the cylinder fill is always in the optimum range with adjustable camshafts and an exhaust manifold integrated into the cylinder head; the aluminium pistons and bearings are coated in an improved material and alloy; and the CUPRA efficiency package includes the start/stop system and brake energy regeneration.
The CUPRA Chassis sets the efficiency bar a good deal higher than before with Dynamic Chassis Control, front-axle differential lock and progressive steering all fitted as standard to enable the car to cope with greater speed – and the CUPRA-specific, high-performance brake system, recognisable by its red callipers, makes sure that deceleration is completed with the same degree of safety.
THE GLORIOUS DESIGN
Being Spanish, SEAT make sure that the Leon family is all about emotional design – and they have made a promise, and delivered, that the new CUPRA is one step further, as demonstrated by the stretched silhouette of the ST estate version. Fitting perfectly on the big, distinctive alloy wheels, the powerful outline is added to by the new front end with its large air intakes and full-LED headlamps, and the new rear skirt with its diffuser effect and the two oval end pipes.
Inside, the whole focus of the Leon ST CUPRA is on the uniquely designed CUPRA sports steering wheel complete with shifting paddles for the optional DSG transmission – and that’s before you start to notice other touches such as the top sports seats in black Alcantara finished with white stitching (with an option for black leather upholstery with white stitching), alumimium pedals and door seals, and an extra option for bucket seats.
19” wheels with a titanium paint finish give the car a special look, along with the Aerodynamic Pack with the spoiler on the rear roof edge, CUPRA lettering on the brake callipers and black door mirror housings.
Inside you’ll also find a Media System Plus with a 5.8” colour touchscreen as standard along with adjustable-colour ambient lighting via the LEDs in the door panels that add to the ambience and the feeling of space, with the look also offering the chance to be enhanced with the optional White Line, Black Line and Orange Line packs.
As someone nearly sang: “Super CUPRA; Dreams are gonna find me.” May is your chance to find it first.