Currently reading: 2024 Cupra Tavascan makes public debut at Munich motor show
Sharply-styled coupé-SUV finally makes production; represents the brand's "dream" and will inform future models

Cupra has publicly presented its third bespoke offering and second electric model at the Munich motor show, which will go on sale next year to strengthen its breakaway success from sister brand Seat

The Cupra Tavascan, the firm’s coupe-SUV, was launched earlier this year alongside the tagline “the brand’s dream comes true”. Its arrival will help accelerate the brand’s rise as its prominence increases in the electric car market. 

Based on the Volkswagen Group’s MEB platform, the Tavascan builds on Cupra’s sporty credentials, with a top-rung 335bhp, 501lb ft, dual-motor, four-wheel-drive model offered alongside a less powerful 282bhp single-motor variant.

This positions it alongside the entry-level 260bhp Tesla Model Y RWD and the top-spec 295bhp Audi Q4 E-tron Performance.

Power is drawn from the same 82kWh (77kWh usable) battery as in the ID 5, which is good for 341 miles of range in its most economical form. By comparison, the ID 5 – with which the Tavascan will share a production line at the group’s Anhui factory in China from later this year – offers 327 miles.

The new SUV offers a major premium interior uplift on the smaller Cupra Born and the Cupra Forementor – the firm's other two bespoke vehicles – with gold trim, flecked lighting and a central 'spine' that mirrors the car’s front end.

Cupra tavascan front left

It also comes with the same 15in infotainment touchscreen as found in the new Volkswagen ID 7 and a Sennheiser speaker system. It uses the same digital driver's display as the smaller Born – itself based on the Volkswagen ID 3.

The Tavascan is only subtly distinguishable from the rather bold-looking concept that previewed its design in 2019 – something the young Spanish brand is key to emphasise.

Put them side by side and the key carry-overs are shown, if made less radical: a sharp, hammerhead-style, angular front end, with a large grille and a distinctive three-triangle light signature, joined by a raked roofline and a boot-width rear light bar.

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These design cues – which Cupra hopes will help the brand build on last year’s record 150,000 sales – will shape future models, such as the upcoming Terramar hybrid SUV (the brand’s final ICE car) and UrbanRebel city EV, Cupra confirmed.

“There are so many purely rational electric cars coming to the market. That’s not what Cupra is about,” said boss Wayne Griffiths, likely hinting at the designed-for-purpose Tesla Model Y, which, with more than 30,000 sales in the first three months of 2023 already, is dominating the premium European electric SUV segment in which the Tavascan will compete.

Cupra tavascan interior

“In 2019, we had a vision to reinvent electrification: we wanted to show the world that electric cars could be fun and sexy, with a great design, while providing unique sportiness. Back then, maybe it was only a dream. Now with the Tavascan, our dream comes true.”

According to Volkswagen Group boss, Thomas Schäfer, investment in Cupra will ramp up - and the Tavascan is expected to play a vital role in the firm’s plans. 

This means we could soon say goodbye to Seat, with Schäfer explaining at the Munich motor show that Cupra had far more earning potential. 

Meanwhile, it’s Taviscan’s bold look that Cupra hopes will entice buyers away from the likes of the Audi Q4 E-tron, Genesis GV60 and Model Y – which, at between £40,000-55,000, it is expected to match on price – in the ever-growing and competitive premium EV segment.

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When it arrives here in late 2024 (a few months after left-hand-drive models enter Europe next summer), this would also allow parent company Volkswagen Group to push for a better portion of the segment, in which it already offers the Volkswagen ID 5 – with which the Tavascan is twinned and shares noticeable visual cues, especially side-on.

Will Rimell

Will Rimell
Title: News editor

Will is a journalist with more than eight years experience in roles that range from news reporter to editor. He joined Autocar in 2022 as deputy news editor, moving from a local news background.

In his current role as news editor, Will’s focus is on setting Autocar's news agenda; he also manages Autocar Business and Haymarket's aftermarket publication CAT.

Writing is, of course, a big part of his role too. Stories come in many forms, from interviewing top executives, reporting from car launches, and unearthing exclusives.

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shiftright 22 April 2023

Seat struggled mostly unsucessfuly to find an identity since the VW takeover and Cupra hasn't fared any better. Derivatively overstyle VW reskins, now with more scowlig anger! What's thhe point?

johnfaganwilliams 22 April 2023

Looks like something you'd find under your shoe for me. Too much already? Stop trying so hard.

However, living in Spain, boy do you see some Cupras? Like everyone else I thought the breand premise was ridiculous but at the moment I can see it outlasting SEAT.

Zeddy 22 April 2023

As said on another forum:

Tavascan gives me indigestion looking at it.

Gaviscon is needed to stop it.

Anton motorhead 22 April 2023
Next time you see a Tava-scam try Nexium. Works faster and more efficiently plus doesn't make you queasy. By the way Bol, I agree with you about coupe SUVs. They are about the worst looking contraptions on our roads.
Anton motorhead 22 April 2023
Next time you see a Tava-scam try Nexium. Works faster and more efficiently plus doesn't make you queasy. By the way Bol, I agree with you about coupe SUVs. They are about the worst looking contraptions on our roads.