Apart from the badge and the sportier seats, you might not even notice you’re in the sporty one, because it’s mostly standard Seat Leon inside the Cupra Leon. In most respects, that’s not a bad thing.
So long as you stay away from the plug-in hybrids, whose battery packs rob an annoyingly large amount of boot volume, the Leon is a particularly roomy hatchback, offering 380 litres of boot space, and almost as much rear leg and head room as the most spacious rivals. The boot is a slightly awkward shape, though, and could really do with a variable floor.
In the front of the Cupra are two sports seats with just enough lateral support to keep you in place during hard cornering, but whose bolsters aren’t too extreme for daily use. In lower-spec VZ1 and VZ2 Leons like our test car, they are adjusted manually and lack the pull-out thigh support and cushion angle adjustment of more expensive versions, but lumbar support is standard.
Even the lower-spec models keep up a reasonably convincing air of luxury. The materials are generally a cut above those in a Volkswagen Golf and the imitation leather on the seat bolsters does a decent enough impression of the real stuff.