Singapore - Barely three months after we first reviewed the Cupra Ateca, a mid-size SUV with impressive performance with a good balance of practicality, we took the recently facelifted one out for a spin. The question is, is it any better?
While there ain’t any game changing upgrades per se, on the exterior, you will get newly redesigned front and rear bumpers, a new front grille, as well as full LED head and tail lights. These new parts, especially its front façade, further accentuates the robustness of Ateca.
Similar to its pre-facelift predecessor, the power plant produces 300hp with 400Nm of torque, four-wheel drive whenever you need it, and a DSG dual clutch gearbox for lightning speed shifts. Engage launch control and you’ll rush to a 100km/h in 4.9 seconds, with a mild strain at the back of your neck till you hit a top speed of 246km/h.
On the insides, you’ll be greeted by a newly designed steering wheel, with a more ergonomic feel; a large customizable 10.25” digital cockpit, and a wide 9.2” high definition infotainment touch screen in the middle. Connectivity to your cellphone is completed with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Overall craftsmanship is also consistent with the new and improved range from Cupra, with lower grade plastics found only at places where the sun doesn’t shine.
Another thing we love about the new facelift are its new sports seats, surprisingly comfortable while giving you all the support you will ever need in this powerful SUV. And to keep your rhymes and rhythms flowing as your cruise, a well balanced 340W BEATS audio system for high-fidelity experiences.
While the new Cupra Ateca is indeed priced slightly higher than some of its immediate competitors in terms of size, practicality and branding, it offers a surprising level of performance that would traditionally cost much more...
Three things we love
- Spacious and practical mid-size SUV, sits four adults comfortably!
- More than sufficient performance for daily use and the occasional overtaking sprints.
- Suspension system is very well balanced, comfortable in 'comfort mode' and stiffer but not jarring when in 'cupra mode'.
Two things that could be better
- In the first generation, the exhaust system seemed louder with more grunt. However, the slightly muted setup for this facelifted version might suit the general public better.
- Infotainment system could be more intuitive.