I am not a person who drives very fast anywhere really – because I am used to driving around in my VW UP! – And although it’s the GTi version – it still only has 115BHP which by today’s standards is not fast at all. So, when Seat dropped me off the Leon ST CUPRA 300 I was very excited, and like any man – I decided that I liked it before I had even turned the key.
Power and Efficiency:
My test car was fitted with 2.0-litre TSi engine that manages to complete 0-62 mph sprint in just 4.9 seconds, yet returns an average of 39.2 mpg. Plant your foot all the way into the carpet and you will achieve a max speed of 155 mph. So, what’s all the fuss about then? Well, it’s the way the Leon gets you to where you want to go, and at such a pace that you need to restrain yourself from going totally bonkers. The sheer acceleration of the Leon boggles the mind and to be honest that’s something I could do all day long – roads permitting of course. No wonder it has a ‘CUPRA’ setting – and I suggest you only engage that setting if you know how to handle a fast car.
On the road:
As you would expect from a CUPRA – the handling is poised thanks to Seat doing a proper job of setting up the suspension which is controlled and gives the Leon a planted feel on the road. Although, the ride can be quite harsh, especially for those of you who wanted a softer approach; although the Leon CUPRA ST is a car you buy because you want it to do all things a normal estate can’t, with the added bonus of Seat’s 4Drive which keeps everything in check – meaning it pretty much sticks to the road under most conditions, All of this of course improves the high speed cornering response of the Leon by keeping you firmly planted onto the road ahead.
Road and wind noise are not a problem for the CUPRA ST either – as Seat have refined it well to deal with additional noise from the onset. The only noise you will get is from that wonderful 2.0TSi engine and that burble of 300PS thundering down the road.
Design & Technology
As you would expect from Seat, the cabin materials are of a good quality and you can see that there has been no penny pinching on the interior – and all-around visibility is good. Seating is a big plus point in the ST and it shows. A large family needs lots of rear legroom and the ST does not disappoint here either.
The Leon CUPRA ST also comes with a large amount of tech and extras that you wouldn’t find in a normal estate. Below is just a small amount of what you can expect such as:
9″ CUPRA machined alloy wheels; exclusive CUPRA front and rear bumpers; red brake callipers (front and rear) with CUPRA logo; digital cockpit; front sport seats in Alcantara; flat bottomed, perforated leather steering wheel with white stitching and CUPRA logo; wireless phone charger; KESSY (Keyless entry and go); adaptive cruise control, electro-mechanical progressive power steering; Seat drive profile CUPRA: Four different modes (Normal-SportCUPRA-Individual), CUPRA performance interface, Dynamic Chassis Control (DCC) plus loads more.
To sum up:
I love the Leon CUPRA ST, it’s a brilliant estate. As with all Seat’s, there will, of course, be very little to go wrong as reliability, in general, is excellent. As Seat is part of the VW Group you can also expect build quality to be good and Seat’s use of quality components and the material is second to none and something that makes the Leon CUPRA ST one of the better buys.
Price from: £33,175.
By Tony Yates