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Cupra Tavascan review

2024 onwards (change model)
Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 54.0
” High drama for Cupra's range-topping electric coupe “

Pros & cons


  • Sharp handling
  • Bold  interior and exterior
  • Huge infotainment screen

  • Interior feels cheap in places

Written by Curtis Moldrich Published: 17 May 2024 Updated: 17 May 2024


It’s been five years since Cupra revealed the electric Tavascan SUV, but it’s finally here and we’ve driven it. It represents the ushering in of a new era for the brand – even if it’s essentially based on an existing Volkswagen Group car with a little added drama inside and out.

It’s a simple strategy that’s already proving to be effective: the rear-wheel drive Cupra Born is one of the more interesting electric hatches cars to drive – and that’s before we even move to the hotter Born VZ.

So, being closely related to the Skoda Enyaq Coupe, Audi Q4 E-Tron Sportback and Volkswagen ID.5, you can pretty much guess it’s going to be like those to drive, only sportier. Outside of the Volkswagen Group, the Tesla Model Y is a natural competitor. Musk’s SUV has a sparse but more premium interior, but the Cupra is far better on the road.

You could also look at the Ford Mustang Mach-E, Kia EV6 and Hyundai Ioniq 5. But is it actually any good, and does it do enough to separate itself from its more sensible relatives? Read on to find out.

Cupra Tavascan review (2024)
Interesting and good to use, the Tavascan’s interior is welcoming.

What’s it like inside?

The striking looks are similar to the original concept car’s interior, and that’s a pleasant surprise in a production model. However, there are some examples of poor execution. The interior plastics feel too hard for a car with premium aspirations. Even the lashings of copper – now an interior signature of Cupra – don’t really help.

A huge 15.0-inch infotainment touchscreen tilted toward the driver is the biggest in a Cupra so far. Its clear display and quick response makes it relatively easy to use. We’d prefer more shortcuts and a few switches, but it wasn’t too hard to get to trying out the Sennheiser sound system – which delivers a hefty aural punch when needed.

The navigation system is good too, especially when specced with the Tavascan’s expansive head up to display, and interior lights. Both proved incredibly inuitive when traversing the dense roads of Barcelona.

Cupra Tavascan review (2024)
Long, wide loadbay has a reasonably flat floor.

Rear seat passengers will be pleasantly surprised by the generous legroom and there’s also adequate headroom too. That airy feeling is helped by the Tavascan’s panoramic sunroof, though. Boot space is fine at 540 litres, though probably a little smaller than you’d expect given the size of the car. This is another casualty of dynamic styling.

What power options are there?

The Tavascan has a pretty performance-biased spec sheet. The top of the range four-wheel drive VZ packs in a combined 340hp thanks to dual electric motors. That makes for 0-62mph dash of 5.5 seconds with a limited top speed of 112mph.

Up to 30% of the torque can be diverted to the front wheels, depending on your drive mode and the conditions. The entry-level rear-wheel-drive model, with 282hp, does away with such complexity, and delivers straight-line performance figures that aren’t far behind.

Cupra Tavascan review (2024)
The Tavascan is fun to drive… for a large SUV-shaped electric car.

What’s it like to drive?

As you’d expect Cupra’s engineers have fine-tuned the suspension for improved dynamics. Elsewhere, the steering has been designed to offer more feedback than the VW, Audi and Skoda platform sharers, with the overall package being designed to be more dynamic to drive than its counterparts.

Simply put, it’s sharper, grippier and overall more interesting to drive than its Volkswagen counterpart, the ID.5, and can be good fun in the right conditions. In performance-focused VZ trim, the Tavascan develops near-to-neck-snapping acceleration to 30mph at least. It’s enough to excite when exiting corners.

Steering feels similar to the smaller Born, with each drive mode (ranging from Comfort, Range and Performance to all-out Cupra mode) weighting up the wheel and providing varying levels of feedback depending on mode.

The ride is fine too, with very little body roll in corners without distracting amounts of jolts, vibrations or harshness though the wheel or seat – though driving on non-UK roads makes it harder to judge.

Cupra Tavascan review (2024)
Acceleration is a rapid, and steering is sharp – lack of brake feel is a problem though.

The brakes are less impressive. They feel powerful, though a little uncertain and wooden at times. Simply put, something is happening when you use them, though it doesn’t exactly track with the amount of pressure you’re using. It’s the same in the Skoda Enyaq vRS.

Range and charging

The lower-powered Tavascan has a range of 353 miles, while the more powerful dual-motor model can do 324 miles. A heat pump is available though not standard on either model and both use the same 77kWh battery.

Our experience of the similar Skoda Enyaq vRS is that you’ll get an easy 280-mile motorway range, which is more than good enough especially if you can plan your route around rapid chargers. When you need to do it all again, the Tavascan can charge from 10 to 80% in just half an hour when using a 135kW charging point. That’s an ideal amount of time for a comfort break.

Cupra Tavascan review (2024)
Model range is made of two cars at launch, but expect more to follow.

What models and trims are available?

You will be able to order one from July 2024, with deliveries set to commence before the end of the year.

There are just two version of the Tavascan for now, the rear-wheel-drive model and the high-performance VZ model we drove. Cupra is trying to offer a more streamlined choice for customers when it comes to extras, with a Winter Pack currently being the only way to spec a heat pump, although UK specs are yet to be confirmed.

Should you buy a Cupra Tavascan? Read on for our verdict to find out what we think

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