Seat is a minnow compared to some members of the Volkswagen Group, but that hasn't stopped it from tackling the big boys with some seriously powerful hot hatches. The latest is the Leon Cupra R, a limited-run powerhouse set to storm onto the scene in Frankfurt.
Power in the Cupra R comes from the same turbocharged four-cylinder engine you get in the Volkswagen Golf R, making 310 hp (231 kW) when hooked up to a manual gearbox or 300 hp (224 kW) when coupled with a double-clutch transmission. That's the same you get in the Golf – at least, manual cars get the same amount of power – but where the Volkswagen has all-wheel drive, the Seat puts its grunt exclusively to the front wheels.
The camber of the front wheels has been modified, the car gets an adaptive suspension setup and there are Brembo brakes at all four corners. The engine breathes through a new exhaust, too, for a bit more burble.
If the exhaust doesn't reveal the fury hiding within, the R is dressed in a pumped-up suit. Carbon fiber detailing has been added to the front and rear bumpers, skirts and diffuser, while the mirrors are finished in copper. Carbon fiber and copper trim pieces have been spread liberally throughout the cabin, and the steering wheel and gearstick are trimmed in Alcantara. Just 799 examples will be built, with pricing details yet to be anounced.
Along with the Leon Cupra R, Seat will be using the Frankfurt Motor Show to announce Alexa integration in its cars. Although some companies allow owners to activate minor in-car functions using the Amazon Echo in their home, the Leon and Ateca will be the first cars in Europe to integrate Alexa. Initially owners will be able to use it to find restaurants, gas stations or make restaurant reservations, but Seat is promising to expand its range of skills over time.
Finally, the company will be slotting the compressed natural gas (CNG) powertrain from the Leon and Mii into the little Ibiza. All of this will be happening at the Frankfurt Motor Show, where New Atlas will be on the ground covering all the action.