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Seat Leon Cupra R 2018 UK review

What exactly is it?

This is actually the features, top dog from the Seat Leon range – probably the most effective, most focused and many extreme variant from the brand’s Ford Focus rival. It comes down outfitted with similar turbocharged 2.-litre engine because the supercar-aping Volkswagen Golf R, too as lots of performance hardware to create a base-level Porsche Cayman seem under-gunned.

We first drove it in The country late this past year and were astounded by its eye-widening mix-country pace and quickened responses. However, with all of 24 United kingdom-bound types of the model offered out, we have our very first time in a single on British roads to actually test how adding unique adaptive dampers and a few pretty extreme (by production vehicle standards) negative camber affect its real-world performance.

The car’s engine produces 306bhp, like the Golf R, but there’s no Haldex clutch to juggle power between your front and back axles here, because drive is distributed solely towards the front wheels. Torque is controlled with an electronic locking differential that’s taken straight from the Cupra 300.

Seat Leon Cupra R 2018 UK review

What’s it like?

Indicate point, even on the bumpy British B-road, the Leon Cupra R could make ground as quickly as other things with seatbelts along with a horn. It doesn’t chew in to the tarmac under turn on corner exits just like a Golf R – with two-wheel drive, obviously it can’t – however the front wheels grip the top with your fantastic amounts of traction the Cupra R’s rampant powertrain could be exploited with enthusiasm.

Frequently, focused hot hatches can seem to be excessively harsh and brittle on Britain’s busy road surfaces. However the Cupra R, using its distinctively tuned suspension, will a fine job of dissolving the vibrations generated by creases within the tarmac. It’s firm, particularly at low pace, however the faster you decide to go the greater effectively the vehicle glides over ridges within the road. That being stated, it’s not really forgiving like a Golf R, but to become fair, that was to become expected.

The Cupra R is extremely clearly more worried about being driven like your hair’s burning, so charge right into a corner on the trailed throttle and also the front finish will respond eagerly. The additional negative camber (it’s been almost bending) enables the vehicle to actually lean into its front tyres (our vehicle came with optional Michelin Cup Sport 2 tyres as opposed to the standard Continental SportContact6s), encouraging the rear-finish to in excess of-rotate a couple of levels. It’s less laugh-out-loud mobile because the Honda Social Type R or Renault Sport Mgane (which advantages of four-wheel steering), but it provides the vehicle a far more loutish demeanour.

That’s matched through the engine’s tone, which sounds more aggressive compared to Golf R’s because of a less restrictive (when it comes to volume) exhaust that beguiles with pops and crackles off throttle once the car’s set to the top Cupra mode – that is new for that R. Much more satisfying may be the snort of overrun whenever you pull for any quick upshift with the car’s tightly gaited six-speed gear box. United kingdom buyers aren’t offered a dual-clutch automatic like other markets, but our experience suggests the Cupra is even more rewarding for this.

Dial things in comfort mode and also the Cupra R is really as supple like a warm hatch so that as docile like a mid-spec diesel, even though it never completely winds to exactly the same extent because the Golf R. The blip of throttle on start-up is a continuing indication you’re within the hottest Leon to create production yet.

Must I purchase one?

The question ought to be preceded by ‘Can I purchase one?’ because, unless of course you’re among the 24 Brits or 775 individuals from other markets who’ve already purchased it, you’ll have to hang about until the very first Cupra R arrives at the 2nd-hands sell to bag one.

Even though you could purchase one, you may have a problem justifying the cost because, as exciting because it is, you’re parting with 34,995 for any Leon. Take into account that the just as fast and more playful Social Type R is 4000 cheaper, as the RS Mgane, which on first impressions may be the Social Type R’s greatest threat, is anticipated to become almost 6000 less, which figure only appears bigger.

On the other hand, possibly that’s missing the purpose. The Cupra R is neither probably the most extreme nor diversely gifted from the class, but it’s an explosive model for Seat aficionados and you’d be difficult-pressed to locate certainly one of individuals not amazed by its performance.

Where Surrey On purchase Offered out Cost 34,995 Engine 4 cyls, 1984cc, turbocharged, gas Power 306bhp at 5800-6500rpm Torque 280lb foot at 1800-5700rpm Gear box 6-spd manual Kerb weight 1453kg Top speed 155mph -62mph 5.8sec Gas mileage 38.7mpg CO2 170g/km Rivals Honda Social Type R, Renault Mgane Renault Sport 280

Seat Leon Cupra R 2018 UK review

How to buy your first dream car

There should never be an ideal time to purchase your first sports vehicle, or perhaps your first future classic.

Whether it is school charges, a home purchase or perhaps your second daughter’s wedding – or perhaps your daughter’s second wedding – there’ll always be a minumum of one financial obligation to discourage you. When we believe that this is actually the simple fact, however, it has to follow that now’s just like whenever to purchase your first Aston Martin, or perhaps your first V12. Otherwise now, when?

We’ll take a look at 19 different ‘firsts’ and steer you round the pitfalls and for the light. The first Bond vehicle. The first getaway vehicle. Even the first TVR.

The only real factor that each one of the 19 groups has in keeping is really a strict theoretical budget. Not too strict it becomes completely impossible to purchase, say, the first handbuilt British sports vehicle, but strict enough that people don’t immediately descend in to the arena of pure fantasy. Continue reading – the first Italian supercar might be within much closer achieve than you believe.

Aston Martin

The V8 Vantage is the greatest-selling Aston Martin ever. Getting first gone on purchase in 2005, and because of so many getting been offered across a 12-year lifespan (everything being relative), you can purchase one todayfor just 27,000. Now you ask ,: in the event you?

How to buy your first dream car

Given how pretty the Vantage is, and just how brilliant it’s they are driving, the apparent response is a convincing ‘yes’. Like several handbuilt cars, however, particularly first-of-the-line handbuilt cars, the Vantage isn’t without its issues. They’re generally tough and reliable, but they’re impacted by niggles, frequently electrical, specifically if the battery is permitted to operate f lat. Plan for a steady flow of three- or four-figure bills on topof the acquisition cost to place these gremlins right.

Mid-engined sports vehicle

For the first mid-engined sports vehicle, take a look at the initial Porsche Cayman. Both entry- level 2.7-litre model and also the 3.4-litre Cayman S start around 12,000. The larger engine, with 295bhp, ought to be the more inviting of these two, but it’s notoriously difficult. It may are afflicted by scored bores and intermediate shaft bearing failure, each of which may cost thousands to place right. The smaller sized 2.7, that is still potent enough with 241bhp, is a lot more dependable. The Cayman itself, meanwhile, is among the nicest, most fun sports cars from the past few decades.

How to buy your first dream car


Merely a couple of years back, the least expensive distance to a Rolls-Royce would be a late 1970s-vintage Silver Shadow II. You can purchase one for approximately 10,000 4 or 5 years back, however nowadays they’re double that. Now, your 10,000 budget is only going to stretch towards the supposedly less desirable Silver Spirit, the 1980s model with set square styling.

Have a slush fund for maintenance watching as values gradually start to sneak in, just like the Silver Shadow’s did.

How to buy your first dream car

Unusual engine:

A unique engine is a which has an infrequent quantity of cylinders or perhaps a peculiar cylinder layout, not just one that operates on green spinach. Engines don’t have any more unusual than Wankel rotaries and, in the current era, it’s only Mazda which has endured using the rotary design, most lately using the RX-8. The important thing to purchasing one on a tight budget would be to spend 1500 approximately around the vehicle itself, putting aside exactly the same again for that near-inevitable engine rebuild. Even at 3000 all in, the RX-8 appears like excellent value.

Elsewhere, the Volkswagen Corrado VR6’s motor is all about as odd as conventional piston engines get: two banks of three cylinders with what is basically a really narrow position V6. You’ll have to spend 6000 approximately to get a tidy vehicle today, however it won’t lose value over in the future. VW endured with unusual cylinder plans up to the W8-engined Passat, that was upon the market after 3 years on purchase in 2005.

How to buy your first dream car

They’re rare now, but Passat W8s could be selected up for less than 4000.

Getaway vehicle:

Within the 1998 film Ronin, Robert de Niro’s character chases lower an E34 BMW M5 with the busy roads of Paris inside a Peugeot 406, of the things. It’s believed is the finest movie vehicle chase ever and, if little else, it’ll make you pining to have an early 1990s M5 (despite the fact that, in certain scenes, the vehicle would be a mere 535i). Values take presctiption the up you’ll pay 30,000 today.

Future classic:

Predicting which cars will achieve classic status ten or twenty years from now’s a dark art and anyone who states know which models are dead certs ought to be treated with similar scepticism like a palm readers. Still, we may have a stab in internet marketing. Since original Series 1 Lotus Elise is continuously gaining value now, it’s an acceptable bet the later Series 2 is going to do exactly the same somewhere lower the road. They begin around 12,000. Elsewhere, any two-door Subaru Impreza is a nice sure bet. Whether it is an imported Type R or perhaps a P1, the rare coupe models is only going to become more and more searched for after.

How to buy your first dream car

BMW M-vehicle:

It’s a really happy coincidence the least expensive, least expensive M-vehicle you can purchase today also is actually one of the best. Getting dropped as little as 5000 a couple of years back, E46 M3 prices have finally started to creep back again. Find the correct vehicle and you’ll most likely watch its value rise over in the future.

The 3rd M3 within the empire is frequently referred to as the very best of all. Aside from searching fantastic, it features a glorious straight six engine, softly balanced rear-wheel-drive handling along with a still-attractive cabin. Early cars with 100,000 miles or even more around the clock start around 8000. Lower-mileage cars enter into the frame at 12,000. Like several high-performance cars, though, you ought to be more worried about condition and just how well an M3 continues to be maintained than the number of miles it’s covered.

Generally, the E46 is extremely dependable, but it’s known to be affected by cracked boot floors. BMW repaired this problem under warranty on cars more youthful than ten years old, check the documents to find out if this task continues to be done.

How to buy your first dream car

Whether it hasn’t, it’s worth examining the floor from the vehicle completely, ideally with the aid of a professional, before investing in an order.


You would need to be certifiable to place your own money right into a TVR. They’re fragile, temperamental, ruinously costly to repair and, before too lengthy, your engine will inflate. So goes TVR’s status. A lot of it might be deserved – there’s no smoke without fire or, moreover, a disadvantage-fishing rod with the engine block – but mostly it’s hokum. Indeed, there are many TVR proprietors through the United kingdom who’ve a lot of trouble-free fun within their Cerberas and Tuscans every weekend.

The least expensive distance to a contemporary-ant TVR is really a Chimaera, the 1990s and early 2000s roadster using the Rover V8. Some TVR specialists recommend staying away from the early cars and selecting a publish-1997 model rather. They begin around 10,000. Unsuccessful mind gaskets and camshaft put on would be the primary engine issues. The large factor to look for, though, is chassis corrosion. You may be searching in a monstrous repair bill, so the best way forward is to buy any prospective purchase checked over with a specialist.

How to buy your first dream car

Constructed from 1999 to 2006, the Tuscan is possibly typically the most popular modern TVR nowadays. Famously, it used the company’s own straight six engine. Difficult in the day, the rate Six has ongoing to become produced by specialists to some extent of real durability. It isn’t difficult to get a second hand vehicle having a reconstructed engine, but you are very likely to pay for 30,000.

Bond vehicle:

For those that 007 is connected with Aston Martin, it has to be also acknowledged that at various points he’s also driven an AMC Hornet, a Ford Mondeo along with a BMW Z3. The super-spy’s style of cars hasn’t been as impeccable as his chat-up lines. From the Bond cars you may really wish to own, and may eventually manage to buy, though, the Aston Martin Vanquish sticks out.

Driven by Pierce Brosnan’s 007 in Die A Later Date, the Vanquish looks more handsome each year and it is V12 is really a masterpiece. Prices start at 80,000. Steer clear of the semi-automatic ’box.

How to buy your first dream car

Italian supercar:

Automotive firsts don’t get a lot more poignant than the first Italian supercar it’s proper bed room wall poster territory. Since its launch in 1999, the Ferrari 360 continues to be the access point for a lot of buyers. Together with all of those other performance vehicle market, values have stabilised recently, or perhaps risen, so whereas you may have selected up a greater- mileage vehicle for under 50,000 in 2013, you’re searching in a figure beginning having a ‘six’ today.

The pay-off, obviously, is that you may place your money into one now and never lose any one of it, just like lengthy as you’re conscious of the number of miles you’re wearing the vehicle and also you keep on the top from the maintenance. Managing a V8 Ferrari berlinetta clearly won’t sacrifice quality – annual servicing is about 500 annually, or two times that each third year once the belts degrade – but, with nodepreciation to bother with, you’re beginning removed from a fantastic position.

There aren’t a lot of common problems to understand. The aluminium bodywork won’t rust but could corrode, that might necessitate corrective work along with a respray. Knocking in the suspension, meanwhile, willbe because of knackered ball joints the entire set may cost 1000 to exchange. Existing proprietors recommend a 2000-3000 annual plan for maintenance. Manual 360s be more effective they are driving – the semi-auto ’box feels dimwitted nowadays – and extremely clean cars command about 70,000.

How to buy your first dream car

Ferrari Mondials and 348s are available for less than 50,000, but the two is the perfect first Italian supercar. A much better bet may be the Lamborghini Gallardo, that is priced broadly using the Ferrari 360. It feels more contemporary compared to Ferrari and it is V10 engine is really a factor of pleasure.


Probably the most ubiquitous of all of the vee-engines, there’s a V8 to match all tastes and wallets. You’ll need only spend 3000 approximately to bag the first bent-eight. At that kind of budget, you’ll be searching at old four-door smokers – Jaguar XJs, BMW 540is, Audi A8s and so forth. At 3000, these cars aren’t remote being disposable run for six several weeks until something goes majorly wrong, cost scrap, repeat.

Bump your budget as much as 6000 and various once very esteemed SUVs fall within achieve. Think Porsche Cayenne S, BMW X5 and Range Rover Vogue. V8 sports vehicle? You’ll have to spend 8000 approximately, however, you won’t be wanting for options. The Mercedes SL500, BMW 645Ci and Jaguar XK8 are in budget. Not every V8s were born equal, though. Spend 15,000 approximately and you’ll land a real great. At this cost, the E92 BMW M3 and B7 Audi RS4 enter into the frame. Have high-revving V8s which are well worth the selling price alone.

How to buy your first dream car


The least expensive V10 vehicle for purchase today may be the E60 BMW M5, carefully adopted by its two-door brother or sister, the M6. The saloon starts from less than 13,000. The best way forward? Don’t proceed with no cast-iron warranty.


The V12 is unquestionably probably the most regal of all of the engine configurations. Purchasing a V12 is a factor, running the first is another factor altogether. You’ll get a late 1990s BMW 750i for approximately 6000, however your fuel costs will match that figure every 12 several weeks. Repair and maintenance bills is going to be suitable for of the 12-cylinder luxury vehicle too.

If you like your V12s with increased of the sporting f lavour, the Aston Martin DB7 may be the way you like. Beginning at 30,000, the V12-engined Vantage model is hugely desirable but could are afflicted by corrosion and timing chain tensioner failure, which may be terminal.

How to buy your first dream car

Nurburgring lap record holder:

The vehicle industry’s Nurburgring lap record obsession – or, more particularly, the juvenile squabble that ensues when one vehicle maker claims a brand new record and the other cries foul play – is among its more tiresome pantomimes. On some level, though, Nordschleife lap records continue to be unutterably awesome. Awesome meaning that on the particular day, under a lot of pressure, an impossibly gifted driver hustled a vehicle around exactly what is a fearsomely challenging circuit quicker than every other vehicle of the identical type had ever gone before. That needs to be applauded. It’s the childish schoolyard nonsense that surrounds these lap occasions that’s decidedly uncool.

Most Nurburgring lap record holders are, obviously, new cars, meaning second-hands bargains are unthinkable. However, you don’t have to spend lots of cash to place a genuine ’Ring champion in your front yard. The most recent Honda Social Type R may be the front-wheel-drive production vehicle record holder, getting set a time period of 7min 43.8sec. You are able to get a six-month-old example for 28,000.

Within the saloon vehicle sector, you are able to bag yourself an Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio for approximately 53,000. The category-leading four-door Alfa set a time period of 7min 32sec round the Eco-friendly Hell. At this time, somebody from Jaguar will hurriedly explain the XE SV Project 8 has since bettered the Alfa’s time by greater than 10-seconds. That we are saying: yes, it did. But you’re only making 300 of they and them cost three occasions around the Quadrifoglio.

How to buy your first dream car

Performance estates:

You will find couple of cars that shed value more rapidly than the usual extremely fast estate. For that savvy used vehicle buyer, it’s an excellent chance. Beginning around 10,000, the initial Audi RS6 is extremely affordable and, with 444bhp, it’s massively quick too.

Big-name-designer vehicle:

You may be unable to afford an Aston Martin Vanquish but, when you come towards one, you may be driving around inside a vehicle which was created by the identical bloke. Ian Callum’s design credits range from the Vanquish, DB9 and Vantage, along with the Jaguar F-Type and C-X75 concept vehicle. His is an extremely distinguished CV. The Callum vehicle you really can afford, though, may be the Ford Puma. You’ll find it difficult to spend even more than 1000 on the Puma nowadays – putting to 1 side the special Racing Puma – and, twenty years on in the car’s launch, there aren’t many well-cared-for examples left.

Frank Stephenson, meanwhile, is possibly most widely known for his work on Ferrari and Maserati. He designed the F430 and also the brilliantly subtle 612 Scaglietti for that Prancing Horse, along with the Enzo-derived MC12 supercar for Maserati. His later work includes the McLaren MP4-12C. Stephenson, like Callum, is among vehicle design’s greatest names. Happily, however, individuals people on the very tight budget can nick ourselves a Stephenson design by means of the initial BMW-era Small. Unlike the Puma, these Minis have been in plentiful supply as well as for 2000 you’ll look for a Cooper with lots of existence left inside it.

How to buy your first dream car

Handbuilt British sports vehicle:

McLaren, Aston Martin and Caterham all build their cars by hands, but you’ll find more skilled craftsmanship inside a Morgan. It isn’t correct that Morgan chassis are constructed with wood, contrary to public opinion. Actually, their chassis are manufactured from very conventional steel. It’s the frame that props up body that is made of ash, every inch from it labored and formed using time-honoured methods.

Prices start around 20,000 for any 4/4, but if you prefer a V8 model – which, surely, you need to do – you’ll pay around two times that for any Plus 8.

Porsche Motorsport 911:

The Porsche 911 GT3, regardless of vintage, will be locked in the greatest regard among vehicle enthusiasts. They’re so sought after, actually, that values are just going one of the ways. The least expensive GT3 available now’s also the initial from the line: the initial 996 GT3, introduced in 1999.

You’ll pay 60,000 approximately. For your you’ll buy not just a brilliant track-focused sports vehicle and among the truly amazing engines – the Mezger flat six – but additionally a slice of motoring folklore, honed by Porsche Motorsport division. It’s the genesis of the very most legendary motoring empire of all of them.

How to buy your first dream car

Vehicle with fancy doorways:

Whether scissor or gullwing, nothing trumps a vehicle with doorways that open upwards for kerbside theatre. The least expensive distance to a vehicle with look-at-me doorways may be the McLaren MP4-12C, that has just dipped below 100,000.

Do This…

Salvage cars:

Fancy saving around 25% in your next vehicle? Buying salvage sounds dangerous but could yield a good deal. One of the ways is to find via auctions.asm-autos. co.united kingdom, a web-based auction featuring countrywide stock. There’s a yearly registration fee and you may inspect before putting in a bid (vital). Cars are categorised based on damage. Become expert within the crumpling characteristics of a couple of models before putting in a bid. Cut-cost Minis are all around and frequently non-beginning Mazda RX-8s are super-cheap. RB

Ariel Atom:

When you are buy-in out of your otherhalf, the remainder is simple. You order in the factory, and collect in the room. After I bought my vehicle, it had been a non-supercharged model without no screen. I subsequently returned for supercharger, screen and uprated brakes. Glad Used to do. In nearly 4 years, it had been perfectly reliable, and that i offered it for precisely what I compensated. Best fast-vehicle deal I’veever done. SC

Lotus Esprit:

My first and just mid- engined supercar’s singular achievement never was to accomplish an outing – not one– without something failing. I figured purchasing it destroyed me until I attempted to operate it. Considering how little I acquired after i offered it to exactly the same sod I’d got it from still makes me cringe 3 decades later. AF

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