What do you get when you blend petrol with copper and add a dash of graphite? The answer is ‘The Old Guitarist’ from Pablo Picasso’s Blue Period and this Cupra Ateca in Graphite Grey with Petrol Blue interior.
The Ateca is available in just one trim in Australia, the VZx, and it is the top spec with pretty much everything that you will included as standard and framed in an attractive and fun medium-sized SUV. Powering the Ateca is a 2.0 litre, 4-cylinder inline, turbocharged petrol with a maximum of 221kW between 5,300 – 6,500rpm and maximum torque of 400Nm between 2,000 – 5,200rpm. The Ateca has the performance to match its good looks and it will complete the 0 – 100 km/h dash in 4.9 seconds. The official combined fuel efficiency is 7.8L/100km and for my time with the Ateca I used 10.4L/100km.
The Cupra button on the steering wheel or the rotary switch on the centre console will change the drive mode on the Ateca, from Comfort, to Sport, Off-road, Snow, or Individual. Under Individual mode, which could also be called ‘Picasso’ mode, you can adjust the Dynamic Chassis Control, Steering, Engine, Adaptive Cruise Control, and A/C to suit your mood.
Activating Cupra mode engages an enhanced exhaust sound from the optional Akrapovic exhaust. It also produced plenty of tap, taps, pops and bangs when I was aggressively pulling up and down using plastic wheel mounted paddle shifters through the 7-Speed DSG transmission. But like the Cupra Formentor that I previously drove I found that the paddles were too far back for my fingers to properly reach them.
There was some loss of traction from front tyres when I enthusiastically turned out of the corners, but otherwise the Ateca remained well adhered to the road thanks to the 4Drive all-wheel drive. Under the 19″ Sport black and copper alloy wheels on the Ateca I drove were the optional front Brembo calipers with Performance disc rotors, which finish off the look of the Ateca nicely.
Open the front doors using the keyless entry and you are greeted with a puddle light shaped like the Cupra logo. Inside the cabin of the Ateca feels bright and airy thanks to the optional Panoramic sunroof and I really like the Petrol Blue leather bucket seats with copper stitching. Both front seats are heated and driver’s seat has power adjust for recline, forward/back, seat height front and rear, and 2-way lumbar support with three memory positions. The passenger seat only has manual adjustment for recline, forward/back and seat height.
I am also a fan of the Ateca’s heated steering wheel design, with the big Cupra emblem in the middle of it, with the 10.25″ digital driver’s dash that has multiple views. Voice control is activated by pressing one of the buttons on the steering wheel and it worked well for making phone calls and changing the radio station, but voice input for setting a destination on the sat nav is not supported.
The 9.2″ infotainment system connects to your phone through either wired and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, but does get bad finger marks on it. The Beats sound system comes standard and has nine speakers with a subwoofer and 340w amplifier. Media sources in the Ateca, in addition to smartphone projection, include AM/FM radio, Bluetooth, and My media.
The wireless pad is located at the front of the centre console in a deep storage cubby and above it is two USB-C ports and one 12V socket. In the centre console there are two cup holders, one deeper than the other, with removeable mat in the base for easy cleaning and good size drink bottle storage cubbies in the front doors.
The rear seats have ample head and leg room for two adults to comfortably sit in the back or there are two ISOFIX/two rear tether child seat restraint points for younger passengers. The centre seat folds down as an arm rest with three different sized rigid cup holders in the front of it or there is good-sized drink bottle storage in the rear door cubbies, but at a 450 angle.
Rear passengers get two central air vents with individual direction controls and one central manual on/off controller. There are two USB-C ports located under the central air vents and there are mats on floor but not over transmission tunnel
Showing how highly specced the Ateca is, it even has a gesture open/close tailgate or you can open/close form button under tailgate and in the cabin, while the button on the key fob opens it only. The boot is adequately sized and would fit the weekly shop or a pram and a small shop and it has good height available as well for taller items. If more space is required there is a manual release for 40:60 split fold rear seats located in the boot. The boot space has no tie downs, but it does have four hooks and one light and there is a tyre repair kit (in lieu of space saver spare thanks to optional Brembo brakes) located under the boot floor.
The Cupra Ateca does not have an ANCAP safety rating, but does come with front airbags (driver and passenger), knee airbag (driver), side airbags (2 front), and curtain airbags (2). Active safety includes adaptive cruise control, Travel Assist, Front Assist, Lane Assist, Side Assist, and Blind spot monitoring with Rear cross traffic alert. For convenience you get rain sensing wipers and dusk sensing headlights with a 360-degree camera and standard rear-view camera with front and rear parking sensors.
All new Cupra’s come with a 5-year unlimited kilometre warranty and 5-years Roadside Assist that gives you 24-hour roadside assistance, emergency accommodation, car rental, and towing. The service intervals are every 15,000km/12 months (whichever occurs first) for the Cupra Ateca and 3-years servicing was included in the purchase price on MY23 Pre-configured Cupra vehicles (excluding Born) purchased before 31 October 2023.
Like the Cupra Formentor I previously drove this Ateca provides an artful combination of performance and style. The MY23 Cupra Ateca VZx is available from $61,750 excluding on-road costs and the optional Panoramic Roof is $1,800, Akrapovic Exhaust $5,950, and Performance Brakes with Brembo Calipers $4,050. You can order your Cupra Ateca on-line or visit one of the Cupra garages for more information about this Spanish Master.
|It’s a great colour combination||Paddle shifters too far back from steering wheel|
|The interior design||Passenger seat only has manual adjustment|
|Gesture open/close tailgate||No ANCAP safety rating|
Photographs by Driven Women Magazine.