There are a number of major automakers that now have spin-off performance brands, and more are emerging all the time. The obvious big names are the likes of AMG for Mercedes, the M Division for BMW, and Nissan Nismo, but they have recently been joined by the likes of Volvo’s Polestar and Hyundai’s N brand. And now we have confirmation of the latest addition to this burgeoning trend, which is Cupra, the performance arm of the Volkswagen Group’s SEAT brand.
Cupra has long been the sportiest expression of SEAT, so it’s perfectly logical for it to gain its own independent status, DNA and identity by becoming a new entity in its own right. When the all-new Cupra models come out they will feature the new Cupra logo, and the new brand will make its official debut at a special international media event to be held on February 22. Shortly after the launch of the new performance brand, the very first Cupra models will be revealed to the waiting public at the start of March during the 2018 Geneva International Motor Show.
The SEAT sub-brand has this week released a teaser video that showcases the logo that it was being reported SEAT had applied to register in 2017, which now uses a copper color that’s very similar to that already used for some details of the recent limited-edition Leon Cupra R.
The next model to carry the Cupra badging, and the first model under the separate banner, is probably going to be the Ateca SUV. However, Dr. Matthias Rabe, SEAT’s board member with responsibility for research and development, has already admitted there could well be some hybrid Cupra models in the future.
Rabe is quoted by Auto Express as previously saying, “Cupra and electrification is not a contradiction. I could see a Cupra as an electrified car, and we have something in mind.” Whether that translates to a hybrid or electric version of the Ateca, or if Rabe was referring to an entirely new model remains to be seen. Either way, it would be interesting to see an offshoot of a mass-market manufacturer producing a hybrid with an emphasis on performance instead of just fuel economy. – AFP Relaxnews