We know it’s not – and almost certainly never will be – available in Australia, but the launch of the 2010 Seat Leon Cupra R in the UK seemed like as good a time as any to give you another glimpse of this quirky and individual hot hatch.
The Cupra R is the big brother of the already-tweaked Cupra. Power from the 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine grows from 177kW to 195kW, while torque is up 50Nm to 350Nm and is all available from 2500rpm.
Those numbers make the Cupra R the most powerful Seat ever sold in the Spanish brand’s 25-year history in the UK.
Its other numbers aren’t too shabby either: 0-100km/h in 6.2 seconds, 250km/h top speed, combined fuel consumption of 8.09 litres/100km and CO2 emissions of 190g/km.
Trying to help keep the front-wheel drive Cupra R in a straight line is Seat’s electronic XDS system – which uses enhanced ABS functionality to imitate a traditional limited slip differential – as well as stability and traction control and emergency braking assistance.
Instantly recognisable in its standard guise, the Cupra R stands out even further from the pack thanks to its 19in white or silver alloys, twin central exhaust pipes and customised rear diffuser, extended rear spoiler, ebony black front seat backs and R badging inside and out.
Production of the Seat Leon Cupra R is limited to around 500 per year and UK customers will begin to take delivery of their £25,205 ($42,600) pocket rockets in the coming weeks.