Cupra has revealed the all-new Formentor, the second model from the spin-off brand of SEAT and the first vehicle developed from the ground up by the Spanish marque. As expected, one of the two powertrains offered for the Formentor will make it a plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV), but the other is a high-performance petrol engine.
Taking its own shape but using plenty of styling cues from the incoming SEAT Leon, the Formentor measures 4,450mm long, 1,839mm wide and 1,511mm tall. That makes it longer, a tiny bit narrower and considerably lower than the Cupra Ateca, which is supposed to make you think that the Formentor is a coupe-like creation. Nevertheless, it should remain practical, with a 2,680mm wheelbase said to promise 'significant room' for rear passengers, while the boot space is rated at 450 litres. Other highlights of the exterior include 19-inch alloys in front of massive Brembo brakes, and a full-width light bar on the Formentor's boot lid.
Inside, there's a continuation of the copper-coloured theme that has become, in a short space of time, Cupra's signature shade, while bucket seats trimmed in leather provide the right sporting ambience. Occupants' eyes will inevitably be drawn to the 12-inch panoramic floating screen that forms the crowning centrepiece of the dashboard, but horizontal, full-LED, wraparound ambient lighting will also lift the mood. In front of the driver is an excellent digital instrument cluster, seen in recent Cupra and SEAT products, while the start button and drive mode selector buttons for the Formentor are mounted on the steering wheel, in true Alfa Romeo style. Sorry, we meant, true Cupra style.
Two powertrain options, one PHEV
In the run-up to the 2020 Geneva Show that never was, it became clear that the Formentor was going to be a PHEV - and that has been confirmed. The 1.4-litre TSI 150hp petrol engine, augmented by an 85kW (115hp) electric motor and a 13kWh lithium-ion battery pack, provides the 245hp and 400Nm peak outputs that we've already had confirmed for the in-house cousins, the Volkswagen Golf GTE and the Skoda Octavia RS iV. This PHEV drivetrain will be capable of 50km in fully electric mode on a full charge of its battery.
Perhaps more surprising is that the Formentor will not only be a PHEV, but a true performance model for Cupra. A 2.0-litre TSI turbocharged four-cylinder petrol unit, used in countless SEAT Leon Cupras, will be offered, delivering 310hp and 400Nm. This unit will be linked to the 4Drive four-wheel-drive tech for maximum performance, while both the TSI and the PHEV Formentors will employ a dual-clutch DSG automatic transmission with paddle shifts on the steering wheel.
Advanced Dynamic Chassis Control (DCC) suspension and progressive steering will be fitted, to ensure the Formentor can handle all of its power, while a wealth of safety features will be built in, either as standard equipment or as optional extras. Expect a gamut of connectivity features, too.
'A very special car'
Deliveries of the Formentor will begin in the last quarter of this year and Wayne Griffiths, chairman and CEO of Cupra, said: "The Cupra Formentor is a big step on our journey to make Cupra a desirable brand for car lovers. With a fascinating design and high-performance powertrains, including a plug-in hybrid, we have made the Cupra Formentor a very special car for special people."