The Arona has also been Cupra-ified, but it's only a concept for the time being.
[UPDATE, March 6] Live images from the Geneva Motor Show with the SEAT Leon Cupra R ST have been added at the beginning of the gallery, below.
SEAT officially introduced the Cupra sub-brand this week with the 300-horsepower Ateca at the forefront of the unveiling event. The production-ready model will sooner or later be joined by two new members, with one of them being revealed this week. We’re talking about the Cupra Ibiza concept, a hot hatch version of SEAT’s supermini set to essentially serve as an alternative to the Volkswagen Polo GTI.
Cupra didn’t go into any details concerning the sporty Ibiza, but there’s a good chance it will have just about the same oily bits as its sibling from Wolfsburg. Expect to find a 2.0 TSI underneath that hood , with 200 horsepower (147 kilowatts) and 236 pound-feet (320 Newton-meters) of torque channeled to the front axle through a six-speed, dual-clutch automatic gearbox. With the Polo GTI getting a six-speed manual this year, maybe its Cupra counterpart will have one as well.
Design-wise, the concept adopts a more aggressive body with a prominent front spoiler lip finished in glossy black like the roof-mounted spoiler at the back. A pseudo rear diffuser, dual exhaust tips, and Copper accents for the new logo and the wheels further separate the performance version from the more humble Ibiza.
Stepping inside, it has been essentially carried over from the regular model, but we do notice some faux carbon fiber trim, Alcantara on the steering wheel and seats, along with a fully digital instrument cluster. More copper accents have been added inside to create a connection with the body’s finish.
SEAT Cupra says it has also worked its magic on the Arona subcompact crossover, but images are not available at this point. When it will eventually arrive in production guise, it will likely have the same hardware as the Cupra Ibiza since the two cars are virtually the same underneath the skin.
While the two B-segment Cupras are concepts for the time being, the new Geneva-bound SEAT Leon Cupra R ST will be at a dealership near you by the end of 2018, provided you’re living in Europe. With 300 horsepower, all-wheel drive, and a big trunk, it could be all the car you’ll ever need (from a mainstream brand). Like all Cupras, this one too gets an assortment of copper accents inside and out, as well as carbon fiber aero parts, performance brakes, and an “emotive exhaust sound.”
We’ve been hearing rumors about a 335-hp version of the hot wagon, but nothing is official at this point.