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Cupra, a Spanish Performance Brand, Plans to Sell EVs in America

cupra formentor
How Cupra Plans to Sell EVs in America by 2028Cupra
  • Cupra is a Spanish car brand that's part of the VW Group, and it's planning to come to the U.S.

  • Initially part of Seat, Cupra is now a standalone brand and it plans to built EVs in North America by the end of the decade.

  • The lineup could include two SUV models, a Sportback-style hatch, and even possibly a sports car similar to the Dark Rebel concept.

Cupra, the up-and-coming Spanish satellite of the Volkswagen Group, is on a roll. And now the team is preparing the next coup, a launch in the U.S. before the end of the decade. Here are the details.

What Is Cupra?

cupra formentor
Cupra

Cupra started life in 2016 as a subdivision of the Spanish Seat brand that specialized in sporty equipment packs, kind of a poor man's AMG Line or BMW M Sport. But only two years later, it got upgraded to full-fledged brand status. The kick-off product, a go-fast version of the Ateca small SUV, was followed by the Leon hatchback and the Leon wagon in 2021. The first standalone Cupra model was the Formentor SUV (pictured at top), which shares its genes with the Audi Q3 and VW Tiguan. Two and a half years ago, the Born crossover based on the VW ID.3 marked the brand ́s entry to the EV segment, which will eventually become its sole battleground.

When Will Cupra Come to the U.S.?

The next big thing for Cupra is the confirmed expansion into North America. If all goes according to plan, the Spanish underdog will begin building cars here in 2028 or 2029. The Audi plant in Mexico is claimed to be the preferred option for a larger Cupra model, but the VW factory in Chattanooga and a still-to-be-determined U.S. site may also enter the equation.

At least initially, this will not be a nationwide effort but a campaign focusing on the West and East coasts together with selected metro hubs. The marketing strategy is to sell not only online and through a select dealer body but also by establishing new, contemporary channels.

What Cars Will Cupra Sell?

cupra dark rebel concept
Cupra Dark Rebel conceptCupra

Product-wise, we should see a double whammy led by the next-generation Formentor and a bigger crossover said to be the sister model of the Audi Q6 e-tron. The third model in the lineup could be a Sportback-type four-door hatchback with conceptual Audi Allroad overtones. And finally, we expect a toned-down version of the eye-catching Dark Rebel concept, which could serve as Cupra's first halo car. But the end of the decade is still a fairly long way off, and with the markets presently swinging from one extreme to the other, the product portfolio of Cupra USA is not yet cast in stone.

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