During the Industry Pool at the Nürburgring I have filmed the limited Seat Leon Cupra R 310 testing around. You also see some footage of the car during the IAA in Frankfurt.
When SEAT introduced the mid-cycle refresh for the Leon range, the hot Cupra model received an extra 10 horsepower for a grand total of 300 hp, which despite the bump in output, it was still 10 hp less than the Euro-spec VW Golf R facelift. Now, the sleek compact hatchback is able to match the grunt provided by its counterpart from Wolfsburg thanks to a new R version packing a respectable 310-hp punch.
While the Golf R is a regular production model, the Leon Cupra R will be a special edition limited to only 799 units. Bear in mind only the version equipped with a six-speed manual gearbox has the aforementioned 310 hp as the DSG-equipped model features 300 hp. Don’t let the “R” badge trick you into believing this is an all-wheel-drive car like the Golf R as the range-topping Leon comes exclusively with a front-wheel-drive layout. If you’re willing to sacrifice 10 hp for the sake of having a grippy AWD layout and a bigger trunk, the 300-hp Leon Cupra wagon should do the trick.
To further differentiate it from the lesser versions of the lineup, SEAT has developed carbon fiber trim pieces for both front and rear spoilers, together with larger front air intakes and side mirror caps featuring a copper finish also applied on the badges and "Cupra" lettering. The side skirts are also Cupra R-only goodies, and so are the copper-look wheels and roof-mounted rear spoiler.
Buyers will get to pick from the standard Midnight Black and Pyrenees Grey body paints or the more expensive Matte Grey finish reserved for this model. All cars planned for production will boast several other hardware upgrades, including a new exhaust system, modified Brembo brakes, and a tweaked version of the Dynamic Chassis Control system. Last but not least, SEAT’s engineers will also fiddle with the camber at the front axle.