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 |   |   |  2011 Seat Leon Cupra R - Web Exclusive
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2011 Seat Leon Cupra R - Web Exclusive

The fire-breathing new Leon resurrects the iconic Cupra R badge last seen back in 2006.

Mar 29, 2010


The new Seat Leon Cupra R will be the most powerful production car yet offered by VW's Spanish division. With 265hp available from its 2.0-liter turbocharged engine, the fire-breathing new Leon resurrects the iconic Cupra R badge last seen back in 2006. More than that, the car also becomes Seat's quickest-accelerating model to date with a 0-62mph time of just 6.2 seconds, while the top speedof 155mph is also Seat's highest ever.

The new car's torque peak of 260 lb-ft at just 2500rpm is 37 lb-ft more than the already muscular Leon Cupra, and puts Seat's newcomer ahead of the likes of the Honda Civic Type R GT (142 lb-ft); Lotus Exige 1.8 S Performance (170 lb-ft) and even the Alfa Romeo Brera 3.2 JTS V6 (237 lb-ft). A comparatively priced BMW 120i M Sport Coupe, meanwhile, can muster just 155 lb-ft. Engineers at Seat's Technical Centre in Martorell have worked to modify the existing 2.0-liter, four cylinder turbocharged engine's electronic management system as well as boost maximum turbo pressure to generate the Cupra R's extra power and torque.

A revised high-pressure fuel injection pump and reworked ratios within the Leon's crisp six-speed manual gearbox are further indications of the careful re-engineering that has gone into this Seat record-breaker. A beguiling mix of Latin passion and practicality, this new 'super SEAT' remains, of course, the rational choice for ultra-hot hatch buyers who want sporty coupe looks allied to five-door functionality. Official engine figures show combined economy to be just a whisker off 29mpg US, which is impressive for such a spirited hot hatch.

Beyond the raw performance and economy statistics is the new Leon's unique styling, which has been calculated to underscore its exclusive nature. Bespoke styling changes elevate the new Cupra R's kerbside appeal. The addition of sporty twin central exit exhaust pipes within a customized rear diffuser, discreet extended high-level rear spoiler, subtle 'R' badging and the careful application of gloss black highlights inside and out give the forthcoming Leon its exclusive appeal. 19" Potenza alloys, prominent 'R' badging on the back of the quilted leather bucket-style front seats and a specially created Seat Sport engine cover continue the styling.

Offered in a typically sunny selection of eye-catching colors, the Catalan creation arrives with the option of new Custom Palette shades including a stunning new metallic yellow called Tribu.



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