Seat Cupra TFSI

nice, clean, flowing lines of the Seat

handles like it's on rails (especially with the ESP on)

at speed at Midvaal. Check that aerodynamic, slice-through-the-air, wedge shape


It has teardrop headlights with integrated indicators and a large, inverted-trapezoid grille. The front wheel arch is the starting point of the design hallmark of the Seat (pronounced Siat), a dynamic line that sweeps over the wheel arches and slopes across the front and rear doors to finish at the rear wheels.
The Cupra’s coupé appearance is accentuated by its sloped windscreen and downwards-sloping roofline. The rear door handles are concealed in the door frames to further the design.
The rear is dominated by the large hatch with elongated rear light clusters, capped by a spoiler and third brake light. The big "S" symbol in the middle of the hatch is also the boot release, a Seat signature feature.
Soft-touch fascia has a neatly shrouded instrument cluster housing three oval, black dials with white backlighting and red needles.
The centre console is tilted slightly towards the driver and houses the audio unit and air-conditioning. It appears to be suspended, allowing for an oddments tray, two cup holders, plus hazard warning button.
Steering column is adjustable for height and reach, while controls for both audio and phone are within the racy three-spoke 'Cupra' steering wheel.
The rear seats can accommodate three (slim) people, which splits and folds asymmetrically. With both side folded boot space is increased from 341 to 1166 litres.
The Macpherson strut independent front suspension is mounted on a new aluminium sub-chassis with a 23.6mm diameter anti-roll bar, made more effective by reducing the distance from anchoring point to wheel centre. Rear suspension is by an independent four-arm multilink axle with an anti-roll bar, enabling longitudinal dynamics (comfort) to be handled separately from lateral dynamics (agility).
The electrical power-steering system varies its weight to match speed and steering wheel angle and forms part of the cars Electronic Stability Programme. When the car detects oversteer it instructs the system's electric motor to "weight" the steering wheel's movement in the opposite direction. The driver senses this as a recommendation and is prompted to turn the wheel in that direction to re-stabilise the car. The system doesn't steer the car, however - that's up to the driver. The ESP also has an electronic differential lock and emergency brake assistance.
The two-litre turbo FSI engine features a continuously variable intake manifold, internal exhaust-gas recirculation and its turbocharger in unit with the exhaust manifold.
Seat quotes 147kW and 280Nm between 1800 and 5000rpm and says the car can accelerate from 80 - 120kph in top gear in 9.6 seconds. It will sprint from 0-100kph in 7.2sec, cover a standing kilometre in 28.4 secs and reach 230kph – all on 8.1 litres per 100km. The Cupra also comes with a six-speed manual gearbox.
The Cupra has many convenient features, like built-in Bluetooth connectivity that requires no physical connection between the vehicle and cellphone. The driver can link his phone to the car's network and use it "hands-free" via the steering wheel's buttons and multifunction control lever.
A headlight sensor turns the lights on or off depending on ambient light and a tiny rain sensor in the tinted windscreen controls the wipers.
The Cuprs also has an auto-dimming rear-view mirror, cruise control and an on-board data computer.
A tyre-pressure monitor detects pressure loss and warns the driver via a light on the dashboard; once tyre pressure is corrected, a button in the transmission tunnel must be pressed to reset the system.
The Leon Cupra is equipped with eight airbags. Six are standard: driver and front passenger, two front side, plus two curtain airbags, supplemented by optional rear side bags.
The front end has been designed to minimise injuries caused to pedestrians in a collision; the bonnet and its hinges absorb energy in a controlled sequence without losing strength.

Pressure sensors in the front doors shorten airbag response time in the event of side collisions, combining with acceleration sensors in the rear wheel arches to detect a side impact within seven milliseconds.

In a collision, the control unit triggers the seat belts and crash bags as appropriate, releases the car's central locking, shuts off the fuel pump and turns on the hazard and courtesy lights (and then phone's 911 - No... that's about the only thing it doesn't do, is call 911).

 

the powerful mill of the Seat Leon Cupra

Specifications:

Engine and Gearbox

Engine Layout

Transverse inline 4

Cylinders

4

Aspiration

Turbo-charged petrol

Valves

DOHC 4 valves per cylinder

Bore / Stroke

82.5 x 92.8mm

Capacity

1985cc

Compression Ratio

10.3:1

Ignition Type

distributorless electronic ignition

Gearbox Details

6-Speed Manual

Performance

Fuel Capacity

55 liters

Fuel Consumpsion - Highway

6.2 l/100km

Fuel Consumpsion - Urban

11 l/100km

Consumption Annual Average

7.9 l/100km

Fuel Type

unleaded

Fuel Supply

direct petrol injection

Acceleration 0 to100kph

6.4 seconds

Braking 100 to 0kph

4 seconds

400m Sprint

13 seconds

Top Speed

247kph

Power Output

177Kw @ 5700 - 6300rpm

Torque

300Nm @ 2200 - 5500rpm

Auto Traction Control (EPS)

yes (but you can switch it off - fun switch on)

Limited Slip Diff

no

Towing Capacity

1400kg

Turning Circle

10.7m

Turns Lock to Lock

2.8m

Fun meter (out of 10)

9.8

Dimensions and Weight

Boot Capacity

341 liters

Load

442kg

Length

4323mm

Height

1458mm

Width

1768mm

Ground Clearance

180mm

Gross Laden Mass

1904kg

Mass

1334kg

Maintenance and Warranty

Oil Change Intervals

15000 km

Service Intervals

15000 km

Service Indicator

yes

Warranty Distance (Km)

120000

Warranty Period (Months)

36

Warranty

3 year/100000km, 12 yr corrosion, 5 year/90000km service plan, 3 year roadside assistance

Peripherals and Accesories

Air conditioner

yes

Automatic Air conditioner

yes

Climate Control

yes

Auto Headlamps

yes

Fog Lamps - Front

yes

Fog Lamps - Rear

yes

Xenon Headlamps

yes

Remote Side Mirrors

yes

Auto Dip Mirrors

interior

Remote Side Mirrors Electric

heated, folding with park position

Electric Windows

yes

Electric Window Detail

all

Electric Window One-Touch

all

Tinted Side Windows

all

Tinted Windscreen

yes

Rear Screen Demister

yes

Sliding Roof

yes

Number of Sliding Roofs

1

Auto Windscreen Wipers

yes, with intermittent

Rear Screen Wiper

yes, with intermittent

Heated Seats

yes

Rear Seat Split

60-40

Headrests - Front

yes, adjust. height

Headrests - Rear

3

Hands-Free Phone

blue-tooth

Hands-Free Phone Pre-Wiring

blue-tooth

Radio

yes

CD Shuttle

yes

Multi Function Steering Wheel

audio, blue-tooth

Rev Counter

yes

Central Locking

remote

On Board Computer

yes

Cruise Control

yes

Cup Holders

4

Keyless Entry

yes

Park Distance Control - Front

no

Park Distance Control - Back

yes

Remote Boot Opener

yes

Remote Fuel Cap Release

yes

Security and Safety

Security System

yes

Alarm

yes

Immobiliser

yes

Impact Tensioning Seat Belts

all

Air Bag - Number

6

Air Bag - Driver

yes

Air Bag - Passenger

yes

Air Bag - Side

yes

Air Bag - Detail

front driver, passenger + front sides, curtains front/rear

Hi Level Brake Light

yes

Power Steering

yes

Roadside Assistance Time

36 months

Side Impact Protection

yes

Styling and Look

Body Coloured Bumpers

yes

Body Coloured Mirrors

yes

Metallic Paint

optional

Wheels, Brakes and Steering

ABS

yes

Front Brakes

ventilated discs

Rear Brakes

discs

Brake Hydrolics

2 x-split hydraulic servo assist, EBA, ESP, ABS

Rim Size - Front

7j

Rim Size - Rear

7j

Front Track

1533mm

Rear Track

1517mm

Wheel Base

2578mm

Number of Wheels Driven

2 - Front

Tyre Size - Front

225/40 r18 92y

Tyre Size - Rear

225/40 r18 92y

Front Suspension

independent, mcpherson struts, lower wishbones, stabiliser bar

Rear Suspension

multi-link axle with hellicoidal springs

Steering Type

electro-mech. speed variable power assist

Steering Column Reach Adjust

yes

Price (our test vehicle)

R 270,630

 

clear, easy to read dash tells it all

the yellow bomber and I on the back straight at Midvaal Raceway

Photos by Dylan Slater

 

Thanks to Athol Van Heerden, Meena Motiram and all at Seat SA for the exciting, white-knuckle drive

and to Midvaal Raceway for allowing us to use their facilities.

The Seat Leon Cupra was so much fun to drive.