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Seat Cupra Born in the test: Boost at the push of a button


Seat's sub-brand Cupra is to become fully electric, the new Born is the beginning. It is a smartly disguised VW ID.3, which overtakes its sister model not only in terms of price.

The first impression:

a car that stands out.

With good proportions, a crisp design and a brand emblem that is still unfamiliar to many people.

This is what the manufacturer says:

»Game changer«, the automotive industry always likes to use a word like this when a brand is in motion. Carlos Galindo, who is responsible for product marketing at Cupra, also uses this expression for the Born and adds: "The Born heralds the electric age of Cupra". Seat's sub-brand wants to be fully electric from around 2030. The Born will be followed in 2024 by the Tavascan, an electric SUV coupé, and in 2025 by a city Stromer in the style of the “Urban Rebel” study, which Cupra recently presented at the IAA Mobility in Munich.

The Born should actually be on the street long ago, but the corona pandemic and the management decision not to market the electric compact model via Seat, but exclusively via the Cupra sub-brand, delayed the process. Still, he's not too late: his segment, the "Golf Class", is sparsely populated. As a direct Born opponent, only the VW ID.3 is currently possible. The Nissan Leaf is technically behind, Hyundai Ioniq Elektro and Kia e-Niro are more in the direction of crossovers, as is Renault next year with the Mégane E-Tech Electric.

"With the Cupra Born, Seat closes the open flank for sporty, design-oriented electric vehicles in the compact class," says Peter Fintl, car expert at the technology consultancy Capgemini Engineering. At the same time, according to Cupra's head of development, Werner Tietz, the Born should provide a strong boost in sales because it opens up markets such as Norway for the brand. "Of course Europe remains our core business, but we are now also going to Korea, Japan and Australia," says Tietz.

We noticed:

Like its brother VW ID.3, the Cupra Born is based on the MEB (modular electrification kit) developed by Volkswagen. Both even roll from the same factory in Zwickau. Once again, Seat shows how you can put the more attractive car on the same floor pan. The Spaniards succeeded in this in the combustion world with the Ibiza (counterpart to the Polo) and the Leon (counterpart to the Golf). The Cupra Born also looks - at least according to the author's personal opinion - more exciting than the rather boringly styled Volkswagen.

The ID.3 had to take bitter criticism on its debut for the quality of the interior. Cupra does not want to be accused of this mistake with the Born, took a few more euros in hand and equipped its Stromer with more pleasant materials, even if some customers might find them too technical and cool because of the 3D look.

Christoph Vierling, Head of Overall Vehicle Development at Cupra, also deleted the smaller ten-inch display, like the one on the ID.3 base model, from the Born range. The large twelve-inch touchscreen is used uniformly for all versions. That is not awkward, my industry experts. "Cupra can position the Born in a higher quality and accordingly achieve higher prices," says Stefan Bratzel, car expert at the Center of Automotive Management (CAM) in Bergisch Gladbach. So far, you have always stayed a few thousand euros below the comparable models of the Wolfsburg mother. Unlike the Born, it is more expensive. With 150 kW and 58 kWh battery, the Spaniard costs 37,220 euros, while VW calls for the equally powerful ID.3 36,960 euros.

You have to know that: more

stylish design, a better interior impression, was that what you want to differentiate the Born from the brother ID.3? No. Due to its sporty positioning, the Cupra Born also received the so-called e-Boost. The power of the electric machine is briefly increased from 150 to 170 kW, for example for faster overtaking. However, this performance package will only be available next year and will probably also be available for the ID.3 a short time later. Cupra only got the right of way.

The entry-level version of the Born has an output of 110 kW. Only they are available with the smallest battery (45 kWh) and a correspondingly lower range (340 kilometers). However, the version with the 58 kWh battery, coupled with either 150 or 170 kW output and a range of 424 or 420 kilometers, should become the volume model in the Born series.

Cupra appeals to long-distance riders with the largest battery.

Its 77 kWh storage is supposed to create 540 kilometers after the WLTP cycle.

This variant is only available in conjunction with the 170 kW e-Boost machine.

And to make matters even more complicated, each battery size has a different DC charge management.

With fast chargers, the smallest can be charged with a maximum of 110 kW, the 58 kWh version can handle 120 kW and the large 77 kWh battery digests a charging power of 170 kW.

Seven minutes of recharging should enable her to drive 100 kilometers of "new" driving distance.

Interesting too

First drive in the VW ID Life: Volkswagen's cheap electric car - the first electric car for everyone? By Thomas Geiger

Unsurprisingly, the Cupra Born is similar to the VW ID.3 - calm, confident and comfortable. However, you can also drive him very briskly around the corner. Thanks to the low center of gravity (through the battery), balanced weight distribution (also through the battery), adaptive chassis control and progressive steering, the Born pulls through the curve as if on rails.

We will not forget that:

Cupra has entered into a cooperation with the company SEAQUAL.

It fishes plastic waste from the sea and estuaries and then recycles the waste into plastic fibers.

Cupra uses this to produce a special fabric for the seat surfaces of the bucket seats.

The Cupra Born will not save the world with this, its owner can definitely score points at the next barbecue evening if the topic of sustainability comes up.

Source: spiegel

All tech articles on 2021-10-13

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