The current Seat Leon has been a solid fixture in the family hatchback market for some time now. However the high performance Cupra variant has always fallen short when trying to keep up with the hot-hatch market.

Seat Leon Cupra TSI

However, that will all change from March when the Leon Cupra gets a hearty power upgrade and better performance.

The Leon Cupra that launched in 2014 was already Seat’s most powerful road car, but it will stretch its superiority next year with a newly uprated two-litre TSI petrol engine that pumps out 296bhp – 10bhp more than before – which means it now matches the power output of VW’s Golf R.

Seat Leon Cupra ST Estate badge

Unfortunately, the flagship Leon remains a front-wheel drive affair, unlike the Golf R, which has all-wheel drive. In a bizarre twist though, the ST estate version does indeed get all-wheel drive and mated to a seven-speed automatic transmission that makes it a like-for-like rival to Golf R estate.

Seat Leon Cupra ST Estate

Torque is also increased from 350Nm to 380Nm from 1,800 to 5,500 rpm. This again matches the Golf R and should result in a more convincing and powerful response.

The car isn’t just about power though, it also boasts the safest, most reliable, functional and advanced technology too.

Seat Leon Cupra TSI

Driver assistance systems include traffic jam assist, lane assist, adaptive cruise control and pedestrian protection. Along with an electric parking brake and keyless entry and start. There’s also an integrated eight-inch touchscreen Media System Plus infotainment system.

Seat Leon Cupra TSI interior

The Leon Cupra will be offered as a three-door, five-door and ST estate when it reaches UK showrooms in March.

Prices haven’t been confirmed yet but with all these upgrades, expect a few thousand pounds to be lumped on the RRP of the current Cupra which starts at £28,380.

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