The new SEAT Ibiza Cupra is making its first public appearance at this year’s Beijing Motor Show.
Billed as a concept, the 2012 SEAT Ibiza Cupra is as good as production-ready now that it’s been given the same makeover as the rest of the Ibiza range. This brings in restyled lights and an improved interior, and in the Cupra’s case it also means we get to see another set of flared bumpers and a nice big exhaust.
Starting at the back we see the familiar centrally-mounted trapezoidal exhaust sat underneath a large diffuser-style bumper. A subtle spoiler sits atop the rear glass and the Cupra badge replaces the word ‘Ibiza’. Not a lot of change so far.
Down the sides run a pair of flared sills that are actually part of the Ibiza’s design, not just some bolted-on afterthoughts. 17-inch alloys fill the wheelarches, as before, but the Crono Yellow paint is new, complemented by gloss black door mirrors, a Cupra tradition.
It’s at the front where the changes make themselves known with a modified bumper and grille flanked by the new, more angular headlight design. The lights echo the look of the 2012 Ibiza range, incorporating daytime LEDs that give the Ibiza a very Audi-ish appearance. The grille is smaller and sharper than before and below that is an even bigger air intake to help cool the Cupra’s 1.4-litre TFSI engine.
Performance from the turbocharged and supercharged engine remains the same, channeled through the standard fit seven-speed DSG transmission. Power output is 178bhp backed up by 185lb/ft of torque, the 0-62mph time is 7.0 seconds and the top speed is 140mph.
The quality of the Ibiza’s cabin has been improved and enhanced with new technology. The Cupra is the first of the new Ibiza range to be fitted with a completely new entertainment system that can be complemented by the innovative new SEAT Portable System. A removable device with a 5-inch screen integrates with the Ibiza’s systems and provides functions including navigation, hands-free phone system with voice control and an on-board computer.
As this SEAT Ibiza Cupra is just a concept at the moment there is no word on prices but don’t expect to see too much change from £18,000.