No bespoke sports car from Seat's Cupra brand – CEO12/12/2019
Seat’s Cupra sub-brand will not be having a bespoke sports car anytime soon. The performance arm of the Volkswagen Group’s Spanish brand will focus on SUVs, Cupra CEO Luca de Meo told Autocar.
“You want roadsters, two-seaters, cabrios? This is a typical perspective from your (British) market. We don’t get that question from other markets… sometimes from Germans,” the Seat president said, drawing attention to the SUV.
“SUVs are called sports utility vehicles because they represent a new concept of sportiness. These kinds of things, SUVs with a coupe look, this is what for us was the two-door – an impractical coupe you could barely fit in, but it was fast, the handling was amazing because of a low centre of gravity etc. These things are gone,” he explained.
The 52-year old Italian – who is reported to be a target of Renault to be its next CEO – told the UK mag that the argument about building a sports car is an emotional one, not a rational one, for now.
“I cannot afford to drop a few hundred million on something where I sell 15,000 cars at a loss just for the sake of doing a sports car. When I have some resources, I can tell you we have a lot of creativity, but right now this is not a priority. Seat sells 500,000 cars (a year). I do not have the luxury to do that sort of thing, although I do like it,” he elaborated.
It shouldn’t be a surprise what Cupra’s focus is on. Since the brand was floated in early 2018, its first three models were all SUVs. First was the Cupra Ateca (based on the Seat Ateca B-segment SUV), and then came the Formentor concept and the Tavascan concept you see here. The Formentor is set to debut as Cupra’s first standalone model next year, while the Tavascan – a full EV – is likely to surface as a production car in the next two years.
The Seat boss admitted that the original plan for Cupra was less ambitious. “I wanted to create a business around the motorsport division to protect it from my successor coming in and saying ‘Racing? We don’t need that’ and closing (it). I wanted to create a business around motorsport that can finance its operations. That was the initial idea. Then it became much bigger.”
Source: Read Full Article