Frankfurt Motor Show: Seat Leon Cupra RNew Seat Leon Cupra R is most powerful ever

23 August 2009

Seat Leon Cupra R

Leon Cupra R is Seat's fastest hot hatch

Seat has announced the return of its hottest hatch, the Leon Cupra R. It’s back with a 261bhp bang, making it the most powerful Seat hot hatchback ever.

In fact, that power output matches Seat’s championship winning Leon TDI World Touring Car. However instead of the racing car’s turbodiesel engine, the Leon Cupra R uses the latest development of the Volkswagen Group’s 2.0-litre TFSI turbo petrol engine.

Cupra is fast but efficient

This is similar to that found in the regular 236bhp Seat Leon Cupra, but upgraded with modifications that include a high-pressure fuel pump, which ensures great performance and decent fuel economy. The Cupra R is EU5 emissions compliant, and capable of nearly 35mpg, yet still sprints from zero to 62mph in just 6.1 seconds.

That’s remarkably close to the 5.9-second 0-62mph time of the 300bhp . And although the Seat has none of the Ford’s clever front 'RevoKnuckle' suspension components, it does have an ‘XDS’ differential, an electronic driver aid that helps give maximum traction without slowing the car down too much.

Sporty look for Leon

Seat Leon Cupra R 2

Cupra's turbo petrol engine produces 261bhp

The new Leon Cupra R gains 19-inch alloy wheels, covered in some of the lowest profile rubber we’ve ever seen on a production car.

This isn’t necessarily a good thing, since low profile are expensive to replace and generally detrimental to the vehicle’s ride quality. The payoff is increased cornering grip. The wheels enclose a reassuringly large set of brake discs, counterbalancing the Cupra R’s 155mph performance.

The hottest Leon is visibly identified by a smattering of ‘R’ logo badges inside and out. The interior in enhanced with sports seats, Alcantara upholstery, white dials, aluminium pedals and a sporty steering wheel.

Pricing and specification details for the UK are yet to be fully confirmed, but the Leon Cupra R is likely to undercut many of its rivals. It debuts at the next month.


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