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New CUPRA Leon charges into the market with electrifying performance

New CUPRA Leon charges into the market with electrifying performance

By Swansway Motor Group 21-02-2020

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High-performance CUPRA Leon will be available for the very first time with a plug-in hybrid powertrain

From the design that sets it apart from the competition to its range of high-performance powertrains, the new CUPRA Leon has been developed to become a new reference point in the segment.

The latest addition to the CUPRA range, joining the CUPRA Ateca, follows on from previous generations of Leon and will help grow the brand even further, taking it to new levels of success.

“The Leon CUPRA has been a bestseller, with close to 44,000 units sold in the last generation”, said Wayne Griffiths, CUPRA CEO. “With the launch of the new CUPRA Leon, we will strengthen the CUPRA brand, by giving a new identity to a very emblematic car. The new CUPRA Leon is the KING OF LEONS.”

CUPRA always aims to deliver the ultimate dynamic performance and maintain the brand’s spirit; the new CUPRA Leon brings new levels of desirability and technology to help it meet the needs of an increasingly demanding market.

The new CUPRA Leon is designed, developed and will be produced in Barcelona at the brand’s Martorell facilities.

With two body styles available – five-door and estate – the CUPRA Leon allows customers to choose the vehicle that best fits their lifestyle, without compromising performance, comfort or practicality.

And with high levels of standard equipment including full LED front and rear lamps, rear coast-to-coast lighting, bucket seats, sports suspension, keyless entry and ambient lighting to name just a few, it’s a vehicle that offers great value in the highly competitive segment.

This latest iteration of the high-performance icon will further strengthen the CUPRA brand, offering an outstanding driving experience thanks to its highly advanced range of powertrains, its dynamic chassis technologies, and its elegant mix of sportiness and sophistication in its exterior and interior design. In addition to this impressive offering, the new vehicle also boasts a highly connected, digitalised user experience and the integration of some of the most advanced driver assistance systems available – the new CUPRA Leon has become one of the most appealing propositions the brand has ever offered.

The 2.0 litre TSI petrol engines is available in 245PS, 300PS and 310PS (exclusively available for the estate) power outputs to deliver real on-the-road performance. With an electrified 245PS plug-in hybrid variant also available, performance doesn’t come at an environmental cost in the all-new CUPRA Leon.

The new CUPRA Leon is one of the safest vehicles the brand has ever developed, integrating some of the most advanced driver assistance systems to keep occupants safe whether on the motorway, in the city or simply pulling away from a parking space.

Front view of a CUPRA Leon

And in a world where our lives are becoming increasingly digitalised, the CUPRA Leon not only offers on-road performance but also provides a level of connectivity not seen in CUPRA vehicles until now. So, whether it’s bringing your smart device into the vehicle cabin, or accessing vehicle-specific online services, the CUPRA Leon is the intersection between the road and connectivity.

The new CUPRA Leon is the ultimate expression of the CUPRA brand’s values and is destined to strengthen its position in the market, exciting current CUPRA enthusiasts, while at the same time opening it up to new customers.


Powertrain: Performance and future-proofed

The new CUPRA Leon offers a range of performance-orientated petrol engines, with electrified options in the form of a plug-in hybrid system, so customers can choose the vehicle that best suits their needs.

High-performance Plug-in hybrid (eHybrid)

Available in both the hatchback and estate variants, the CUPRA Leon eHybrid gives customers the performance expected from a vehicle carrying the CUPRA badge, as well as the economy required for towns and cities.

At the heart of the high-performance plug-in hybrid is a 150PS (110kW), 250Nm 1.4-litre TSI petrol engine; a 115PS (85kW) electric motor; and 13kWh lithium-ion battery pack. Together these provide 245PS (180kW) of peak power and 400Nm of torque.

CUPRA Leon eHybrid has an electric-only range (WLTP) of up to 60km (37 miles) to silently travel through streets or through city centres. When the battery needs recharging, it can be done in as little as 3.5 hours using a 3.6kW AC Wall box (or six hours from 230V domestic socket).

Thanks to the efficiency of the plug-in hybrid powertrain technology, CO2 emissions will be below 50g/km (WLTP).

Rear view of CUPRA Leon

TSI Petrol

The new CUPRA Leon is also available in a selection of turbocharged, direct-injection petrol units.

Customers can choose either the 245PS (180kW) and 370Nm or the 300PS (221kW) and 400Nm variant. Both versions are front-wheel drive, available in both five-door and estate body styles, and integrate an electronic limited slip differential to ensure smooth effortless distribution of power.

The system takes readings from numerous sources: steering angle, wheel speed and yaw, to provide reassurance in dynamic driving scenarios.

The most powerful engine in the line-up is the 310PS (228kW)/400Nm 2-litre TSI turbocharged petrol engine, found exclusively in estate.

With 4Drive technology, CUPRA Leon constantly monitors the vehicle and driver inputs to deliver power to the wheel with the most grip, at the precise time it needs it.

The new CUPRA Leon can accelerate from 0-to-100km/h (0-62mph) in fewer than five seconds (4.8 seconds) and on to an electronically-limited top speed of 250km/h (155mph).

All engine variants are mated to a Direct Shift Gearbox (DSG) dual-clutch transmission that ensure a sharp, crisp and smooth gear change.

The shift-by-wire technology is designed so that the gear selector is not connected to the gearbox mechanically, instead using electronic signals to make shifts. When drivers want an even more interactive experience, steering wheel-mounted shift paddles bring the connection between vehicle and driver together.


Chassis: unparalleled ride and handling

As with any CUPRA, the relationship between the engine and chassis is what gives the vehicle its distinctive dynamic performance. The all-new CUPRA Leon continues the brand’s ethos of tuning the chassis and steering to offer the most precise, involving and distinctive ride possible.

The CUPRA Leon’s electronic power assisted steering (EPAS) system is the most progressive yet, accurately translating driver inputs to the road and connecting the driver to the conditions with immediate feedback through the steering wheel.

The Adaptive Chassis Control (DCC) system constantly monitors the road surfaces and driver inputs and makes imperceptible changes to the set-up in milliseconds to ensure surefootedness in any conditions and for the most engaging drive.

The CUPRA Leon’s dynamics can be changed to suit the tastes of whoever is in control through the four different driver profiles: Comfort, Sport, CUPRA and Individual.

Side view of the CUPRA Leon

These profiles change the vehicle’s character, from daily drive to performance-focused hot hatch, giving the CUPRA Leon a breadth of ability seen in few other vehicles in the segment. Shifting between profiles is now even simpler with the DCC slider control on the infotainment screen, meaning you can select precisely the set-up you want.

World-class chassis technologies are at the core of the CUPRA Leon experience. At the front is a MacPherson strut suspension. At the rear is a multi-link system that separates longitudinal and lateral forces, delivering exceptional handling as well as a refined ride.

Stopping power is just as important for a hot hatch: the all-new CUPRA Leon has large 370mm Brembo brakes to maximise braking potential when approaching corners.

Improvements to the all-new CUPRA Leon’s dimensions have added to its dynamic abilities and visual appeal. The front (1,545mm) and rear (1,516mm) track of the vehicle are now more closely matched to the vehicle’s width (1,800mm), immediately making it feel more grounded in the corners and visually more aggressive.

A 50mm longer wheelbase (now 2,686mm) gives greater stability, as well as more rear legroom. The roofline has been reduced by 3mm (now 1,456mm), which combines emphasis the assertive CUPRA visual from the side profile.

The estate variant of CUPRA Leon is 4,642mm long, 1,800mm wide and 1,448mm high, while the wheelbase is 2,686mm, which is 50mm more than the previous generation.

Compared with the SEAT Leon, the CUPRA Leon sits 25mm lower on the front axle and 20mm lower at the rear, meaning a lower centre of gravity.

In the most powerful estate variant the performance is controlled by the 4Drive all-wheel drive system. The latest generation of the electro-hydraulic multi-disc traction system delivers power to all four wheels (whichever has the most traction) in a controlled manner to maximise traction and performance.

The system is integrated into the rear axle and sits at the end of the drive shaft in front of the rear differential, improving weight distribution, meaning the new CUPRA Leon is dynamic, assured and composed.


Exterior Design: Evolving performance

The new CUPRA Leon builds on the evolutionary approach of its stablemate, the SEAT Leon, but adds striking design cues that distinguish it as a high-performance car.

The CUPRA logo sits boldly on the front grille, with a large front splitter and larger air intakes highlighting its more assertive look. As you sweep around the car, its side skirts add dynamism and visually lower the vehicle. The dark chrome front grille frame, front wings and exterior side mirrors contrast with the body colour, to create an appearance that expresses the eagerness and boldness of the new CUPRA Leon.

The look is emboldened further by an enhanced and unique colour palette: five metallic paints (Candy White, Magnetic Tech, Midnight Black and Urban Silver), two special finishes (Desire Red and Graphene Grey) as well as two exclusive matte paint options (Magnetic Tech Matte and Petrol Blue Matte).

The exterior design is enhanced with exclusive CUPRA-specific 19-inch alloy wheels – available in black / copper or black / silver finishes – that house the copper-coloured Brembo brakes. The 245PS variant CUPRA Leon features 18-inch alloy wheels as standard.

“The CUPRA Leon’s design is the result of the combination between athletic physiognomy and striking elegance; both are necessary and complimentary in a car like this.” said Alejandro Mesonero-Romanos, Director of Design at SEAT/CUPRA. “Smooth flowing lines and well-trained muscles reflect perfectly the way it drives on the road: pure fun, just impossible to resist.”

At the rear the coast-to-coast lights deliver a visual focus, while the four exhausts (two dual) (two individual on 245PS variants), a diffuser and spoiler add a sporting allure to the vehicle’s aesthetic.

The additional exterior details aren’t purely added for aesthetics, they also serve a real-world purpose, making the CUPRA Leon more aerodynamic, helping air slide over the vehicle, improving efficiency and performance. The all-new CUPRA Leon’s aerodynamics are eight per cent better than the outgoing model.


Interior Design: Refinement, Comfort and convenience

Before you even step into the cabin, the puddle light projects a CUPRA logo down on the floor to mark the CUPRA Leon out as an exclusive vehicle.

Once inside, the cabin further reveals the character of the car, with a sophisticated, sporty design. The driver gets sporty bucket seats as standard and looks forward to a CUPRA steering wheel, which houses the engine start and driver mode selection button, and an interactive digital driver display.

A sleek, modern look is achieved with a large, central 10-inch infotainment touchscreen that reduces the button count. This look is further accentuated by the vehicle’s compact DSG shifter.

Interior of CUPRA Leon

Throughout the interior the copper and dark chrome detailing brings a sense of drama, with the dashboard and door mouldings finished in brushed dark aluminium and illuminated CUPRA treadplates in the front doors and colour coded door panels and seats.

Drivers have a choice of two distinctive sports bucket seats: “Sharp Code CUPRA Tech” offers a textile upholstery with PVC lateral coverings, while “Genuine CUPRA Timeless” adds a black leather or Petrol Blue textile.

The interior of the new CUPRA Leon gives greater space to front and rear occupants thanks to the vehicle’s greater dimensions. In the estate version, luggage space is increased by 30 litres, adding yet more appeal. The result is a cabin that is driver focused for a performance-oriented experience, but is comfortable and practical enough to take on life’s adventures without compromise.


New CUPRA Leon: lighting technology

The new CUPRA Leon pushes the boundaries of what is possible in the segment with the range of lighting technologies integrated both on the outside and inside of the vehicle.

The CUPRA engineers and designers have used advanced lighting systems to provide dynamic styling, bringing focus to the overall design and improving safety.

The full LED technology used in the headlights improves vision, making even the darkest road visible to the driver.

The vehicle’s side mirrors include integrated LED indicators and puddle lamps that greet the driver and passengers by projecting the “CUPRA” logo as you unlock your vehicle.

The new CUPRA Leon’s design is emphasised further with the inclusion of the rear coast-to-coast light design. The technology gives greater expression to the rear and makes the vehicle stand out to other road users.

Inside, the CUPRA Leon enhances the experience with a full-LED wraparound ambient lighting system bringing increased personality to the interior while also providing a home for a number of key functions such as blind spot detection.


Connectivity: Never lose touch

CUPRA’s engineers and designers have integrated systems that ensure customers will stay connected to their high-performance hatch.

The digital driver binnacle (Digital Cockpit) can be customised to the driver’s needs; in addition to the regular views, CUPRA has developed a bespoke ‘Sport’ view for CUPRA Leon, putting information including RPM counter, current power and torque delivery, turbo pressure and longitudinal and lateral G-force accelerometer.

The digital driver binnacle is joined by a (standard) 10-inch infotainment system that incorporates Retina display and offers 3D online navigation, as well as integrating voice and gesture control.

The system combines SEAT’s Full Link system making it compatible with both Apple CarPlay (wirelessly) and Android Auto – meaning customers can take their digital lives with them into the car no matter where they go.

Users need only plug their phone into the vehicle using the USB connection or connect via Bluetooth to access their eco-system of apps. Whether you want to bring your contact list, music or mapping systems into the car, they’re all easily available on the screen, and can be accessed in a controlled, intuitive and safe manner.

Voice recognition in the CUPRA Leon allows users to interact with the infotainment system using natural language and commands, making corrections and referencing previous commands. The system can be used to find navigation information or search for music in a safer and simpler way than ever.

The next level of connectivity is being made available to Leon customers with the introduction of the SEAT Connect app. Downloadable to your smart device, it gives remote control to a range of functions that will maximise ownership enjoyment and improve safety.

From the SEAT Connect app, users can remotely access driving data of previous journeys and remaining range, parking position, lock and unlock the doors, set up speed alerts so you can be warned if someone using your vehicles is driving too fast, be alerted if your vehicle has been stolen, or activate the horn and turn signals to find the car more easily in a crowded car park.

In Plug-in Hybrid variants, the driver can review and manage the charging process via the e-Manager, prepare the cabin for a journey by controlling the electronic air conditioning, as well as manage departure times all from the smartphone app.

The number of in-car and online services will grow through the life of the vehicle as the digital eco-system expands, enhancing the user experience even further.

The built-in eSIM delivers the eCall service, which directly contacts emergency services should an incident occur, adding yet another level of safety to the vehicle. If an eCall is triggered, vital data is sent to the emergency services also, including position (based on GPS data), engine type, and number of passengers, making it easier for them to assist.

To ensure connection is never lost, the all-new CUPRA Leon includes wireless charging as standard for compatible devices.


Safety: Maximising protection

While CUPRA is synonymous with performance, it also incorporates a suite of safety and convenience technologies that will make it even easier and safer to live with in daily life.

Predictive Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) uses feeds from GPS data delivered from the navigation system and input from the front-mounted camera and Traffic Sign Recognition, allowing it to proactively adjust the cruise speed depending on the road layout ahead – bends, roundabouts, junctions, changes in speed limits and built-up areas. This reduces the requirement for driver input and mitigates against sudden speed changes and manoeuvres.

When the road becomes more congested Traffic Jam Assist takes the stress out of driving, maintaining a safe distance to the vehicle in front, staying in lane (based on road markings) and, with Lane Assist Plus, keeps the CUPRA Leon centred in its lane.

To maintain safety and meet legal requirements, the driver must continually monitor the system and their surroundings, keeping at least one hand on the steering wheel. If the vehicle senses that the driver has taken both hands off the wheel for more than 15 seconds, they will receive audible and visual warnings. A braking jolt can be given. If the driver continues to fail to respond, the Emergency Assist 3.0 system can bring the Leon to a complete stop.

Blind Spot Detection alerts the driver to another vehicle in their blind spot when on the motorway (the wraparound LED light flashes yellow).


Technical data

CUPRA Leon 245PS eHybrid PHEV (five-door and estate)

Engine

1.4 TSI

Cylinder/Valves

4-cyl - 16v

Displacement

1,395cc

Bore and stroke

74.5 x 80.0

Compression ratio

10:1

Electric motor

85kW

Battery

13kWh

Max. Power

245PS

Max. Torque

400Nm

Electric only range (WLTP)

Up to 60km

 

CUPRA Leon 245PS (five-door and estate)

Engine

2.0 TSI

Cylinder/Valves

4-cyl - 16v

Displacement

1,984cc

Bore and stroke

82.5 x 92.8

Compression ratio

9.6:1

Max. Power

245PS

Max. Torque

370Nm

 

CUPRA Leon 300PS (five-door and estate)

Engine

2.0 TSI

Cylinder/Valves

4-cyl - 16v

Displacement

1,984cc

Bore and stroke

82.5 x 92.8

Compression ratio

9.3:1

Max. Power

300PS

Max. Torque

400Nm

 

CUPRA Leon 310PS (exclusive to estate)

Engine

2.0 TSI

Cylinder/Valves

4-cyl - 16v

Displacement

1,984cc

Bore and stroke

82.5 x 92.8

Compression ratio

9.3:1

Max. Power

310PS

Max. Torque

400Nm

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