Switzerland is Cupra country: in the three years since Cupra was ennobled by the sports label of the Spanish Volkswagen subsidiary Seat to an independent brand, it has achieved in this country what Cupra is only striving for elsewhere: every fifth Seat sale is to be accounted for by the athletic daughter Cupra go.
Before the VW ID.3 brother Cupra Born or 2024 the E-SUV Tavascan will join Cupra Ateca and Leon at the end of 2021, the big growth rate king will be Formentor: As the first “own” Cupra, it will run like warm sports tracks. Currently over 32,000 orders! And Cupra has understood: if you want to achieve even more as a brand, you need more. A hit that fuels dreams.
Not an SUV – a piece of sports equipment
This is exactly what the Formentor VZ5 wants to be. We expected a faster Formentor. We got a power and curve grenade that made fans’ mouths filled with gas. This is not an SUV with more horsepower, it is suitable for everyday use, but it is a real piece of sports equipment. Useful? No, but fun.
For the first time outside of Audi, the VZ5 features the current five-cylinder turbo consisting of the RS Q3, TT RS and the new RS3, which will be launched in 2021, only slightly tamed to 390 hp (287 kW): 480 Nm @ 2250–5700 rpm, 7-speed automatic dual clutch , 4×4 – so it goes to 100 km / h in 4.2 seconds and further up to 250 km / h. Since the VZ5 is the pre-series on the first test drive in Spain, weights and consumption values are open. Braking is done by 375 discs with six pistons, the 20-inch wheels have 255/35 tires.
In addition, there is high-tech from the future RS3. Like the torque splitter, which distributes the power between the wheels in such a way that, depending on the mode, even without slippage at the front, “permanently 50 percent at the rear is possible and it feels like rear-wheel drive”, says drive manager Nico Gerhardt: “We wanted to show what we can do ! »
Visually relatively discreet
From the outside you can recognize the VZ5 by details such as the black frame around the grill or pairs of diagonally superposed exhaust tailpipes, typical of the brand, copper-colored. Inside, the familiar, familiar space and comfortable sports seats (two variants) await. Only the touch bars of the current Volkswagen infotainment are impractical, otherwise everything is in balance.
Start button – well, mumbled nice, but not exaggerated, no neighbor will get the crisis. When moving off, the VZ5 treats itself to a short turbo plus DSG hole in «Comfort» mode. The village makes it a bit tighter, but not tough. Very suitable for everyday use! For a moment you think: Well, that was it. Even the “normal” Formentors are not children of sadness on bends, but they are not extreme athletes. So how is the VZ5 supposed to be? Thought wrong.
The rocket in the SUV
End of town, “Cupra” mode, full throttle – now you don’t think anything anymore. One grins. Man, this box goes off! Hiss, hiss, hiss – the gears just fly through the double coupler, the propulsion is merciless and the typical sound is cool. First corners – it doesn’t even push. Further curves – playfully safe and easy. Wow! Only in long, fast arcs can you seldom feel that the center of gravity is even higher here, despite the fact that it is ten millimeters lower.
But just a touch, you can chase the 4.45-meter thing around corners like a compact rocket. Not even driving the wrong way – turning far too quickly, up at the wrong time or off the accelerator – brings the VZ5 out of calm or perfect traction. And the progressive steering is superbly accurate. Enclosed: VZ5 comes from the number of cylinders (5) – and the Spanish “veloz” (German for fast). Probably true.
“Drift” mode included
Later we test the «drift» mode on a closed area. You shouldn’t drift – but it’s just fun. Finally, three laps of the race track. It works very well if you manually toggle up to 7000 rpm. It is not built for that. Who cares? I bet that fans will lick their fingers after the VZ5. The crux: It is limited to 7000 pieces. It will not be a bargain because of the attractive “normal” Formentors (from 43,700 CHF) thanks to the many facilities. The tariff to start in the last quarter is open, rumors in the industry are 60,000 euros. That would be over 65,000 francs, depending on the local equipment it could be over 70,000. Wait. You like to wait for hot guys.