Facelifted 2020 Cupra Ateca does 0-62mph in under five seconds

New Cupra Ateca follows on from SEAT’s updated Ateca, with new styling and a bigger touchscreen

  • 0-62mph now in under five seconds
  • Marked out by sporty body kit and copper touches
  • On sale in autumn

The Cupra Ateca is getting a refresh for 2020, two years after the car went on sale. It follows the changes applied to the recently updated SEAT Ateca, with styling tweaks and an upgraded touchscreen. The price for the new Cupra Ateca should stay close to the £38,140 asked for the current car, and it will go on sale in a few months’ time.

2020 Cupra Ateca styling

As with the SEAT Ateca, the most noticeable changes are a new grille and even sharper LED headlights, both inspired by the SEAT Tarraco and the new SEAT Leon. The front bumper is more intricate than before, with new fins below the number plate. At the rear, the tail-lights are slightly tweaked, as is the lowest part of the bumper. There’s a new set of alloy wheels with copper touches, but there’s no ‘Ateca’ lettering in a handwritten font like you’ll find on SEAT versions.

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Interior and technology

Compare the pre- and post-facelift models and you’ll notice a new steering wheel that looks a bit more modern and has more copper highlights. It’s also fitted to the new Cupra Leon, and features two round buttons to switch the engine on and change the driving modes. You can toggle between ‘Normal’, ‘Sport’, ‘Cupra’ and ‘Individual’.

There’s a new 9.2-inch touchscreen with sat nav, Android Auto, wireless Apple CarPlay and natural voice recognition. Other standard equipment includes SEAT’s Digital Cockpit instrument display, wireless phone charging and adaptive cruise control, while it’s marked out from other Atecas by aluminium pedals, illuminated door plates and blue leather sports seats.

While connectivity has improved, so has the level of driver assistance. The Cupra Ateca now features Side and Exit Assist for when you’re leaving a parking space, plus pre-crash and emergency assistance, and blind-spot monitoring. For when you just want to get to your destination (on a motorway, perhaps), it now also includes predictive adaptive cruise control, which reads the road ahead to automatically adjust your speed, and travel assist, so the Cupra can essentially drive itself in some situations.

Power and performance

Power stands at 296bhp, like before, and the Cupra Ateca gets an automatic gearbox and 4Drive all-wheel drive as standard. The all-wheel-drive system, steering and throttle response have all been fettled, resulting in a quicker 0-62mph time than before. Accelerating to this threshold now takes 4.9 seconds, which is three tenths of a second quicker than the pre-facelift car.

Beefy 17-inch Cupra brakes are fitted as standard, or you can upgrade to Brembo ones that are an inch bigger. The car in these pictures has an Akrapovic sports exhaust, which improves the sound of the engine. It’ll either be available optionally or will be packed into a range-topping Limited Edition version.

Fuel efficiency figures are unlikely to be drastically different from the 32.5mpg and 197g/km of the current model.

What does it mean for car buyers?

We think the exterior and interior updates smarten up the Cupra Ateca, and move it slightly upmarket - although the same is true of the much cheaper SEAT Ateca SUV on which it’s so heavily based. While you won’t be able to feel much of a difference in the real world, the Cupra’s new sub-five second 0-62mph time carries extra bragging rights.

It may be considerably more expensive than the SEAT-badged version but in terms of performance SUVs, it looks like quite good value against its rivals. The Volkswagen T-Roc R, BMW X2 M35i and an equivalently powerful Porsche Macan are all more expensive, while the Audi SQ2 isn’t as practical and the diesel-powered Skoda Kodiaq vRS isn’t nearly as quick.

However, the forthcoming Cupra Leon estate should be even cheaper and more practical than the Cupra Ateca, so you’ll need to decide how important the higher ride height is.

Read our Cupra Ateca review, or check out the forthcoming Cupra Formentor SUV.

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