What Car? says...
If you’re looking at pictures of the Cupra Ateca and wondering why it looks like a Seat Ateca wearing a badge that resembles some sort of superhero logo, we can explain.
Just as Fiat and Citroën have sub-brands for special models and derivatives (under the skin, an Abarth 595 is actually a Fiat 500, for example), Seat decided a few years ago to create Cupra for its performance models. The Ateca was the first model to wear a Cupra badge and it made an impact right out of the gate.
With a 296bhp 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine under the bonnet, a quick-shifting seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox and all-wheel drive, it was capable of a 0-62mph time of just 4.9 seconds and a top speed of 153mph. Overnight, it redefined the kind of performance we expected from an ‘affordable’ sports SUV.
Since then, various manufacturers have responded with even sharper and more focused sports SUVs. The VW Group alone has the Audi SQ2, VW T-Roc R and VW Tiguan R (which all have the same engine and gearbox as the Cupra Ateca).
Then there’s the Cupra Formentor – Cupra’s second sports SUV. It’s smaller and a little more expensive than its older brother, but counters all that with bespoke looks, a plusher interior and supposedly sharper handling. There’s also the extra cachet that comes with owning a vehicle that's not based on an existing Seat product.
To keep the Ateca fresh in the face of those upstarts, Cupra has given it a facelift. There are no truly performance-enhancing alterations, sadly, but it does benefit from a bunch of eye-catching cosmetic improvements, including a more aggressive rear diffuser, full LED headlights, a new front bumper, a sportier honeycomb grille, and some copper-coloured exterior highlights as standard.
So, what else does the new-look Cupra Ateca get, and does it make the best use of all these upgrades? Read on through this full review to find out the answers along with everything else you could possibly want to know – including how it compares with main rivals and what it's like to live with.
If you decide to buy one, or any other new make and model of car for that matter, remember that the free What Car? New Car Buying service could help save a small fortune – it features some mouth-watering Cupra Ateca deals.
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