Customisation is fashionable at the moment, but the abundance of options can be quite perplexing. In our configurator challenge, we gave the CarAdvice team free reign on a manufacturer’s website to create their ideal specification for a particular model.
To commemorate the launch of the Cupra Australia range earlier this week, the team will be customizing their favorite vehicles using the Cupra UK configurator (including a few that are not available in Australia!).
Let us know in the comments which Cupra model is your favorite and which vehicles you’d like to see us configure next!
Journalist Ben Zachariah
I chose the Cupra Ateca with the highest specification for a number of reasons.
While I enjoy the idea of a Volkswagen Golf GTI dressed differently, I adore the idea of an unassuming medium SUV equipped with a potent powertrain and all-wheel drive. Perhaps it has something to do with the recent downpours in Melbourne.
Without intending to be unkind, there is something cool about having an SUV with a profile identical to every other model on the market, except this one can accelerate to 100km/h in less than five seconds from a standstill. I’m old enough to recall when a 0-100km/h time of less than five seconds was considered supercar fast.
This is accomplished through the use of a 2.0-litre turbo four-cylinder engine that delivers 221kW and 400Nm to all four wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. The black duco and copper wheels, as well as the muted blue bucket seats, look fantastic.
As a daily driver, this is right up my alley.
Journalist Alex Misoyannis
My ideal Cupra Australia model, if money were no object, would be the slowest, cheapest, and with the least traction of any of the cars selected by my colleagues for this story. Allow me to explain.
With the five-cylinder Formentor only available in left-hand drive and the Leon Sportstourer destined for other markets, Australia will receive three vehicles: the Leon hatchback, the Ateca and Formentor SUVs.
The latter pair’s physiques immediately eliminated them from consideration for me – but which Leon variant should I choose? While the 140kW model’s estimated starting price of under $40,000 is appealing, and the 221kW GTI Clubsport model will be swift, I found that the 180kW model strikes an under-the-hood balance between thrilling you behind the wheel and roasting the front tyres into wheel-spin oblivion.
I chose the entry-level VZ1 to avoid the oversized (and, in my opinion, unattractive) wheels found on higher-end vehicles, with my example finished in Magnetic Grey on the outside – the best of a rather bland color palette, to be honest – and black leatherette/cloth on the inside.
Apart from the mandatory Safety Pack XL – which includes adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, and traffic sign recognition – I’ve avoided the options list in order to keep the price at a very reasonable £32,790.
Direct currency conversion values my chosen spec at slightly more than AU$60,000, though based on the Australian price estimates released thus far, I’d guess a local price before on-road costs of around $46,000 to $48,000 – likely with a slew of additional features over my base UK model.
Accept my money.
Journalist Tom Fraser
I was taken aback by the Cupra brand’s introduction to Australia. It’s one of those out-of-the-way companies that you’re aware of but don’t know much about, given that its cars haven’t been available in Australia until now.
In any case, it took me a fraction of a second to choose the ultimate model from the lineup – the Cupra Leon Sportstourer wagon (which, unfortunately, will not be available in Australia at launch – Ed).
My specification includes the most powerful 228kW/400Nm engine, mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission (DSG) and all-wheel drive.
I chose the fashionable Urban Silver metallic paint on the exterior, with Petrol Blue Nappa leather on the interior. I’m a big fan of the standard turbine-style 19-inch black and silver machined wheels. If it’s on sale, you simply cannot pass up a nice big panoramic sunroof in a wagon, so I’ve added that to my shopping list as well.
Some of my colleagues might have opted for the Audi-derived five-cylinder Cupra Formentor – but given that the engine is only available in SUV form, I felt justified in opting for the more handsome wagon design.
Senior Journalist Emma Notarfrancesco
It was an easy choice for me (and I apologize if this offends anyone), but I’ve never been a fan of the Cupra Leon, so the Ateca it is. Having said that, if they offered it in manual, I would have given it a try; however, it is only available in dual-clutch automatic. What a disgrace.
Red isn’t always my first choice for cars, but it worked well with the gold-accented wheels. As an SUV girl, I believe this would fit nicely in my garage. I opted for the top-of-the-line VZ3 model, which is powered by a 221kW/400Nm turbo engine and features all-wheel drive.
I also added the sunroof, bringing my total to around $87,000 Australian dollars (though it should be noted that UK prices do not directly translate to Australian dollars).
Kez Casey, Editor-in-Chief
It’s difficult to know which direction to take with Cupra’s Australian launch range. The Leon hot hatch looks like a lot of fun, and there’s also the Leon Sportstourer, which takes on the Golf R (though not in Australia – Ed), not to mention the ever-practical Ateca.
However, each of those vehicles is a former Seat model. So far, only one Cupra has been built from the ground up, and that is the Formentor.
While Australia will miss out on Europe’s flagship 2.5-litre five-cylinder engine, the 228kW 2.0-litre turbo engine with all-wheel drive feels like a reasonable substitute.
By selecting the one-grade-above Formetor VZ2 trim level, you avoid the hideous copper-colored wheels and instead get a set of 19-inch black alloys with machined highlights.
I couldn’t look past the arresting Petrol Blue Matte paint and its svelte contrasting grey lower bodywork, which is complemented by a Petrol Blue nappa leather interior. Swoon.
The price of a 228kW Formentor VZ2 TSI 4Drive starts at £41,670, which equates to an eye-watering AU$76,400. However, pricing in the UK is not directly related to what we pay here – and initial estimates indicate a significantly more competitive starting price when it arrives here. Keep your fingers crossed.