Cupra celebrates its fourth anniversary in Sitges with an atypical event. Atypical because it presents three models revealing the final design, transforming the prototypes into reality and proposing courageous lines and very faithful to those we had seen in the salons, the same salons in which cars are exhibited which, usually, turn out to be profoundly different from the model of production. They are called Terramar, Tavascan and UrbanRebel, but before we talk about them let me tell you an anecdote.
Cupra is keen to talk about emotions when it presents its cars, but what is emotion? A possible answer could be the following: in a world of increasingly flattened cars, with the advance of anonymous designs from China, emotion could be seeing a car that we like so much that we get out of our own, run on foot in the middle. to traffic, knock on the driver’s window and ask him “sorry, what brand is it”?
This is precisely the scene that occurred some time ago while I was trying Cupra Formentor to review it, among the first in Italy. Wandering through the streets of Monza, I notice a car that has been following me for some time, but that cannot reach me because between me and her there were three or four other cars in the middle. Intrigued, perhaps in love, the “stalker” decides to make his move when we stop at the traffic lights: he gets out of his car, leaving it in the queue with the engine running, runs towards me and knocks on the window he asks me the name of that SUV that had so caught his attention. As the sentence ends, the green light clicks and as I shift into gear to leave, I reply: it’s a Cupra Formentoooooor …
What to say, goal achieved Cupra. Not only because it confirms that it really takes 7 seconds to create the first impression, and those few moments were probably enough to win over that guy who decided to knock on my window. But also because the Spaniards managed to give birth to a brand in a period when it was said it would be impossible to launch new brands, and they did so with much more international success than “those others” (the French): 200,000 units sold, plus than they expected and most of it thanks to Formentor. In addition, the brand sold 80,000 cars in 2021 alone.
THE CUPRA RANGE: YESTERDAY, TODAY AND TOMORROW
Cupra started with Cupra Ateca and Cupra Leon, transition models to be followed by Formentor, the first with 100% Cupra DNA. Born has paved the way for the electric side of the Spanish brand, a side that will be the dominant one as Tavascan will be the last thermal.
Cupra waves the flag of a contemporary brand, which has no past ties to respect and embraces the values of today, not those of yesterday, as well as not being too in a hurry to intercept those of tomorrow while riding the trends.
They run fast towards sustainability, interpreted both by electrification and by attention to recycling and reuse, but they do not want to leave anyone on the sidelines, faithful to the mantra of inclusivity. For this reason, for example, the VZ5 remains in the range, which does not exclude fans of an era that is turning towards sunset and offers a 5-cylinder engine, a rarity in the world of modern cars.
By 2025 there will also be updates to the current range, with the restyling of Cupra Leon, Cupra Leon SP, Cupra Ateca and Cupra Formentor.
The tablet foot, however, is pressed towards the electrification that will materialize with Cupra UrbanRebel. Terramar (2024) is the 4.5 meter long SUV built on the MQB platform, sporty look, cockpit oriented around the driver and transition phase engines: it will be endothermic, but the plug-in hybrid will have 100 km of electric range.
THE early 2024 they will bring on the market Cupra Tavascan is in the 2025 will arrive UrbanRebel. Compared to the concept, the car proves very similar if we remove the racing extremes we had seen here. During the celebrations for his fourth birthday, in fact, Cupra reveals what the design of the production model will be, even in the interiors:
The car has yet to be perfected, but what you see is what will be there, word of Cupra. Furthermore, again on the subject of promises, with direct demand (will it really cost € 20,000?), transforming it into the really popular electric, Cupra replies that it will be so, that the LFP will allow it and that, as long as there is a normalization of inflation that is upsetting the entire planet, the price target will be achieved. Obviously we are talking about the basic version and not the more powerful one and with larger batteries.
What will we have at these figures? A compact and sporty 4.03-meter car with 226 HP (166 kW) and up to 440 km of autonomy in the “long range” version. It will go from 0 to 100 km / h in 6.9 seconds.
During the round table with Antonino Labate, then, we ask if Cupra wants to put itself in direct competition with Tesla, and the answer is interesting because the goal is more to challenge brands like Nio, to stop the Chinese advance with European proposals in the segment between the mass market and the premium market.
The challenge is demanding, also because Cupra wants to bring the passion for cars back to young people and, in general, wants to demonstrate that the electric can be associated with the concepts of passion and fun. Early adopters already know this, who bought Tesla, Taycan and a few other battery-powered cars with performance-oriented driving dynamics. But will the masses find in UrbanRebel the key to convince themselves to abandon petrol altogether?