SEAT Leon Cupra 300 review - More excitement than a Golf GTI? - SEAT Leon Cupra performance and 0-60 time

Easily the match of its rivals on paper, and entertaining to drive, but less exciting than some rivals

Evo rating
from £30,140
  • Serious pace and ability for sub-Golf GTI money
  • Lacks a little excitement

The fastest model in the Cupra 300 range is the all-wheel drive ST 4Drive with the DSG gearbox, hitting 62mph from rest in 4.9 seconds, helped by launch control. It'll top out at a limited 155mph too, which seems plenty from a practical estate car. The extra traction makes this a quick car in the real world too, and even on loose or slippery surfaces - a recent drive of the Cupra 4Drive on a frozen lake in Finland, admittedly on studded tyres, revealed it feels plenty fast even when you're not pointing in a straight line.

Regular Cupra 300s are quick too, of course - a DSG-equipped Cupra SC hits 0-62mph in 5.6 seconds, while the manual version covers the same sprint in six seconds flat. Top speed here too is 155mph.

Subscribe to evo magazine

Experience the thrill of driving with evo magazine. Subscribe now and get your first 5 issues for £5 or buy the latest issue in all good newsagents!

Either way, it’s the quickest and most powerful road-going car the company has ever made. Despite its power, the 300 is anything but a garrulous show-off – much more the shy guy who's handy in a fight. Superfast DSG paddle-actuated gearshifts suit the engine beautifully but, on balance, the snickety precision of six-speed manual is more satisfying still.

We've long wondered whether the old Cupra models were making a little more power than suggested by their outputs, and the 300 feels as brisk as ever. What it isn't is particularly dramatic - perhaps the impression that it’s never having to try that hard saps some of the enjoyment. Some similarly-powerful rivals, even those that feel a little slower outright, deliver their urge in a more dramatic and more enthralling fashion.


Most Popular

Ford Mustang

Ford Mustang Mach-E uncovered as all-electric SUV

The Mustang has been hit with the all-electric, SUV treatment
20 Nov 2019
Porsche 911

Porsche 911 GT3 vs GT3 RS vs GT2 RS - track battle

Porsche’s GT3, GT3 RS and GT2 RS are the most hardcore of the 911 breed, but pitched head‑to‑head which will we crown champion?
15 Nov 2019
used cars

Best used cars for sale this week

We’ve delved into the classifieds and chosen our favourite cars for sale this week
15 Nov 2019
Hyundai i30 N

Hyundai i30 Fastback N versus the Nurburgring

We brought the Hyundai i30 Fastback back to its spiritual home in Germany's Eifel mountains, where there is a racing track you might well have heard o…
7 Oct 2019