New Volkswagen Golf R Estate vs Cupra Leon Estate: practicality

These two fast freighters combine power with practicality, but which is the better buy?...

New Volkswagen Golf R Estate rear space

Space and practicality

Front space, rear space, seating flexibility, boot

There isn’t a lot to separate these two for space in the front. A six-footer will have all the leg and shoulder room they need, although the Cupra Leon Estate does offer marginally more head room because its front seats can be set lower than the VW Golf R Estate's.

That same six-footer shouldn’t have any issues sitting in the back behind somebody similarly tall, but if we’re splitting hairs (and that’s our job, after all) the Leon has a bit more leg room. However, because the Leon’s rear seats offer less thigh support and a bit less room for feet than the Golf’s, it’s slightly less comfortable to travel in over long distances. The Golf also has more storage space in its doors, as well as providing pockets for mobile phones on the backs of its front seats.

Cupra Leon Estate rear space

Despite the Leon having the bigger boot on paper, we managed to fit only seven carry-on suitcases below its parcel shelf, compared with eight for the Golf. The Golf’s load lip is closer to the ground, too, and the bumper has less of an overhang, making it easier to load and unload heavy items. Both have height-adjustable boot floors as standard with a bit of extra space underneath. 

However, while this space in the Golf is carpeted to stop items rattling around, lifting up the boot floor in the Leon reveals nothing but exposed bodywork and an emergency tyre inflation kit.

Both cars’ rear seatbacks split in a 60/40 configuration and, when folded down, lie at only a slight angle. There’s also a ski hatch in both cars, allowing you to thread a long, thin item into the rear seat area and still carry a passenger on either side of it.

Boot space

Cupra Leon Estate

Cupra Leon Estate boot space

Boot 620-1541 litres Suitcases 7

Volkswagen Golf R Estate

New Volkswagen Golf R Estate boot space

Boot 611-na litres Suitcases 8

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