SEAT Leon Cupra (2014–)

Model History

January 2014

New Leon Cupra revealed

The Cupra 280 sits at the top of a five-strong family of brand new Cupra models that begins with the 265 PS Leon SC Cupra and ends with the five-door Cupra 280 DSG. Every Leon Cupra completes the benchmark 0-62 mph sprint in less than six seconds, while all manual versions return exceptional 44.1 mpg average fuel consumption.

But the Leon Cupra is a car whose development was led by the pursuit of dynamic excellence. To that end, every Leon Cupra comes as standard with a mechanical front axle differential lock, a progressive steering system that sharpens the turn-in for improved agility, DCC dynamic chassis control to alter the suspension settings between sportier or more comfort-oriented, and two-stage deactivation of the electronic stability control (ESC) – including the ability to turn it off entirely.

The 350 Nm maximum torque of both versions spreads from just 1,750 rpm all the way up to 5,300 rpm, guaranteeing impressive pulling power and overtaking flexibility.

Model Doors Engine PS Combined mpg CO 2 g/km 0-62
mph
Top
speed
VED band OTR price
SC Cupra 3 2.0 TSI 265 44.1 149 5.9 155 F £25,690
SC Cupra 280 3 2.0 TSI 280 44.1 149 5.8 155 F £26,940
SC Cupra 280 DSG 3 2.0 TSI 280 42.2 155 5.7 155 G £28,225
Cupra 280 5 2.0 TSI 280 44.1 149 5.8 155 F £27,240
Cupra 280 DSG 5 2.0 TSI 280 42.2 155 5.7 155 G £28,525

The key fundamentals of the dynamics are low weight and a stiff structure. The systematic lightweight design of the new Leon family is evident in the Cupra: despite considerably improved equipment, the new generation weighs 55 kg less than its comparable predecessor.

The Cupra name has always been synonymous with outstanding dynamics, precise agility and amazing sporting character. In every way, the new Leon Cupra manages to set the bar a good deal higher than any of its predecessors. With DCC dynamic chassis control, a front-axle differential lock and progressive steering all fitted as standard, the new Leon Cupra achieves considerably faster laps on the track than its already impressive predecessor.

At the same time, it is significantly more comfortable, with surprising refinement on long motorway journeys. Safe, strong and consistent stopping power comes courtesy of the Cupra-specific, high-performance brake system, recognisable by its red callipers.

The new front-axle differential lock significantly improves the traction and handling of this front-wheel drive car. The system uses a multi-plate package that is hydraulically actuated and electronically controlled. The maximum locking force is 1,600 Nm and, in extreme cases, 100% of the drive can be sent to one wheel. The differential lock is integrated into all the handling systems, like ESC and EDS. It improves not only the traction, but also eliminates torque steer. Furthermore, its sensitive control has no negative impact on steering feel.

The new front end, with its large air intakes and full-LED headlamps, ensures a powerful look, as does the rear skirt with its diffuser effect and the two oval end pipes. The alloy wheels are exclusive to the Cupra, while the red brake callipers and tinted side and rear windows underscore its individuality.

The focus of the interior is on the Cupra sports steering wheel in its own unique design, complete with shifting paddles for the optional DSG transmission. The sports seats, in dark grey Alcantara finished with white stitching, are another interior highlight. Black full-leather upholstery, likewise with white stitching, is also available. The pedals and entry sills are made from aluminium.

The Cupra 280 is visually differentiated by its unique 19-inch wheels with a titanium paint finish, plus the Aerodynamic Pack, which comprises a spoiler on the rear roof edge, Cupra lettering on the brake callipers and black exterior mirror housings. The trim elements in the cockpit of this top sporty variant are a deep glossy black.

In the UK, additional standard equipment for the Leon Cupra over and above the FR model (and the aforementioned styling details) includes 18-inch alloy wheels, full-LED headlights, DAB digital radio, SEAT Media System Plus, aluminium front door sill trims with Cupra logo, rain-sensing wipers and automatic headlights.

The Cupra 280 is distinguishable by its standard 19-inch alloy wheels, gloss black mirror caps, black exterior mouldings and frames, black rear roof spoiler, red brake callipers with Cupra logo, and black interior inserts. Satellite navigation comes as standard with the Cupra 280, too.

January 2014

280PS SEAT Leon ST Cupra 280 goes on sale

£28,505 (or £29,860 for DSG)

August 2014

Sub8 performance pack launched

Available for the SEAT Leon Cupra 280 priced at £2025. This includes bigger 370mm brake discs, Brembo 4 pot callipers, specially-designed 19-inch alloy wheels in either black or orange and body-coloured side skirts.

Semi-slick Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres are also available, for £460. And to make it look the part two two coloured exterior packs are also on offer: Black-Line and White-Line for £500. Finally, Cupra bucket seats at £1,250. These feature a one-piece head restraint and come clad in black Alcantara with simil leather bolsters and white accents, with embossed Cupra logo. The price also includes Winter Pack (heated front seats and headlight washer system with heated front washer nozzles).

February 2015

‘Ultimate Sub8 Performance Pack' announced for Leon SC Cupra 280 at £4200

(rather more than the original Sub8 performance pack above). Basically the same spec as the Leon Cupra that lapped Nürburgring Nordschleife in under 8 minutes. That brings list price of the manual to £31,410.

For more, you get less: The pack swaps climate control for a simpler heating system, ditches four speakers, loses the centre console armrest and rear vents and dumps the underseat storage boxes. The rest of the pack is as per the standard Sub8 Performance Pack, which means lightweight multi-spoke 19-inch alloys in black or orange, 30mm larger brakes with Brembo callipers and body-coloured side skirts. Semi-slick Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres can be included too for £460.

Keeps DCC (Dynamic Chassis Control) and CUPRA Drive Profile, providing the choice of Normal, Sport, CUPRA and Individual settings, to adjust the suspension, throttle sensitivity, gearbox and engine note, according to the whim of the driver's mood. There's also cruise control, rear parking sensors, touchscreen satellite navigation and tyre pressure monitor.

December 2016

Leon Cupra 300 launched

. The new Leon flagship, available in three bodystyles; SC, five-door and ST, also offers a highly rewarding driving experience and the safest, most reliable, functional and advanced technology.

With its newly uprated 2.0 TSI engine putting out 300PS, the new Leon CUPRA is its most powerful roadcar yet. Not only is the engine 10PS more powerful than before (up from 290 to 300), but it’s maximum torque has increased from 350Nm to 380Nm from 1800 to 5500 rpm.

Harking back to its roots with the 2000 launch of the Leon CUPRA with all-wheel-drive, the SEAT Leon CUPRA 300 will also now boast a similar set-up, with 4Drive traction on the ST version, allied to a double-clutch automatic gearbox (DSG).

To get the most out of such a potent machine, the Leon CUPRA also comes with dynamic chassis control (DCC), a progressive steering system and electronic self-locking differential as standard. The dynamic qualities of the CUPRA can be adapted to the drivers’ tastes thanks to CUPRA Drive Profile too. There are four modes to choose from - Comfort, Sport, Individual and logically, CUPRA mode. This mode is the ultimate in hot hatch performance and takes the driving experience to another level.

November 2017

Leon Cupra R goes on sale

A limited production run has been confirmed for the Leon CUPRA R, a model that will combine power and performance with sophisticated styling and a premium finish. Just 799 models will be built for global sale in the first half of 2018, of which 24 are initially destined for the UK. Priced at £34,995 on-the-road.

Among the improvements on the technical side are a new steering system, modified camber angles on the front axle, four piston Brembo brake callipers and crucially, a retuned exhaust system with even racier note. In terms of performance, the Leon CUPRA R is limited to 155 mph and will despatch 0-62 mph in just 5.8 seconds.

In the UK, the new front-wheel-drive SEAT Leon CUPRA R, boasting 310PS, will be available with a six-speed manual gearbox. Two metallic paint options are available, Monsoon Grey and Midnight Black, both of which are included in the car’s price.

The Leon CUPRA looks have also been given even greater impact in ‘R’ form, through carbon fibre details for the rear spoiler, lower lip spoiler, side skirts and rear diffuser. The newly extended wheel arches and the front also benefit from a more powerful design around the air intakes. Copper colouring is also a key theme and comes into play on the door mirrors, CUPRA tailgate lettering, and copper and black 19-inch CUPRA R alloy wheels.

Inevitably, as the flagship of the Leon CUPRA range, the R also ushers in an upgraded interior. The copper treatment continues on the inside, with the hue being carried through to the detailing on the dashboard, centre console, door panel stitching and steering wheel CUPRA logo. Rounding off the sport-oriented look and feel is Alcantara® for the gearstick, steering wheel and front bucket seats with copper stitching. Underlining their exclusivity, each car will also feature a numbered plaque.

The equipment specification of the Leon CUPRA R is as impressive as its looks and performance. Over the Leon CUPRA 300, the new flagship receives KESSY (Keyless Enter & Go with Wireless Phone Charger), Winter Pack (heated front seats and headlight washers), rear view camera, Safety Pack (Tiredness recognition System and rear seatbelt reminder), BeatsAudio sound system with 10 speakers, adaptive cruise control and lastly, Navigation System High (eight-inch touchscreen, Full Link, dynamic route guidance with 3D map display and 3D emblematic buildings, 10GB hard disk drive).

What does a SEAT Leon Cupra (2014) cost?

Contract hire from £224.36 per month