The Cupra Formentor Plug-In Hybrid SUV: The Complete Guide For India

Cupra Formentor Plug-In Hybrid SUV
Price: N/A
Type of electric vehicle: Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV)
Body type: SUV
Battery size: 12.8 kWh
Electric range (WLTP): 34 miles
Tailpipe emissions: 26 - 32g (CO2/km)


Electric Cars: The Basics


For those of you new to zero-emission electric driving, we recommend a read of the following articles:


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The Cupra Formentor PHEV SUV


SEAT CUPRA, S.A.U, simply known as CUPRA, is the high performance motorsport subsidiary of SEAT. SEAT S.A. is Spain’s first family car manufacturer. The automotive company was founded in 1950 and is headquartered in Martorell, Spain.

In 1986, SEAT was sold to the German automotive group, Volkswagen A.G. Cupra was previously known as SEAT Sport. The Cupra brand was created in 2018. Cupra has the following portfolio of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) and battery-electric vehicles (BEVs).

The production version of the Cupra Formentor compact SUV was unveiled in 2020, with production commencing in September 2020. The SUV is marketed as a ‘Coupé SUV’ by the Spanish automotive manufacturer. The Formentor SUV is also available as a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV).

As is expected from the copper Cupra badge, the Formentor plug-in hybrid sporty exterior stying certainly attracts attention. Put simply, it is good looking! The plug-in hybrid electric SUV is positioned to combine performance and efficiency, to include, improved fuel economy and lower tailpipe emissions. The Formentor PHEV has tailpipe emissions up to 32g(CO2/km) compared to 193g(CO2/km) for the CUPRA Formentor VZ3 TSI 4Drive Petrol 310 variant. A reduction of over 80% in tailpipe emissions.

The Cupra Formentor EV has a claimed fuel economy up to 235.4 mpg. Though, real-world fuel economy will be lower than claimed economy, using the pure electric mode on a regular basis will improve the fuel economy and lower the cost of driving. If the plug-in hybrid is driven primarily on the combustion engine, then expect a fuel economy closer to 40 mpg.

The Cupra PHEV has a 12.8 kWh onboard EV battery, with a WLTP certified zero-emission electric range of up to 34 miles. Depending on driving style, weather condition, road condition, passenger load, wheel size, speed, services used in the EV, expect a real-world pure electric range closer to 27 miles. However, that would be more than sufficient for most day-to-day commutes i.e. driving emission-free and also saving money. The running cost per mile of an EV is far lower than a petrol or diesel car.

We at e-zoomed recommend a ‘topping up’ approach to EV charging. This way, EV range is available to use and regular charging also improves the long-term maintenance of the onboard EV battery. Cupra offers a 8 years or 100,000 miles warranty.

Though the PHEV cannot be charged using fast DC charging, it can be fully charged in under four hours using a dedicated home EV charging station, like the Easee home EV charging station. The Cupra plug-in electric car has a 3.6 kW onboard charger. We discourage the use of a domestic 3-PIN plug for charging an electric car.

The Cupra plug-in hybrid pairs the 1.4 e-HYBRID DSG-6 petrol engine with an electric motor. The all-wheel drive plug-in electric SUV can achieve 0-62 mph in 7.8 seconds (maximum power: 204 PS). The top speed of the EV is 127 mph.

The interior is high quality and practical. Adults seated on the rear seats have ample legroom and headroom. The copper details are visible through the cabin. However, due to the hybrid hardware, the boot space is smaller (345 L) compared to the conventional petrol Formentor. Standard equipment includes: 12″ navigation system, full link smartphone integration (mirror link, wireless Apple CarPlay, wired Google Android Auto), keyless start, keyless entry, driver alert system, dynamic road sign display, high beam assist, dynamic headlight range control and more.

Bottom-line, electric driving is good for the environment and the wallet! The electric car is not available in India.


PROS CONS
Attractive, distinctive, stylish exterior. Also, practical for families.Limited to a 3.6 kW on-board charger. DC charging not available
Decent emission-free range (up to 34 miles)Boot space limited (345 L)
Low tailpipe emissionsAn expensive PHEV compared to alternatives

Gallery


The Cupra Formentor PHEV SUV (credit: Cupra)


One of the key advantages of driving an electric vehicle (EV), is that, it is cheaper to drive, compared to conventional internal combustion engine (ICE), petrol and diesel vehicles. For many years, we have witnessed a significant increase in prices at petrol pumps across India. However, this is not an ‘India’ only trend, but a global trend. We can continue to expect an inflation in global petrol and diesel prices for the foreseeable future.

Both, a pure electric car and a plug-in hybrid electric car, offer significant savings on driving costs per mile, when driven on zero-tailpipe emission electric mode. In India, filling a petrol or diesel car can cost anything between Rs 5,000 to Rs 10,000. As an example, the very popular Audi Q7 diesel SUV has a fuel capacity of 85 litres. Assuming an average cost per litre of Rs 90, the cost of filling a full tank will be up to Rs 7,650!

In comparison, the all-electric Audi e-tron SUV , which is now available in India, and a similar size to the Audi Q7, can be fully recharged for less than Rs 1,000. Put another way, charging the Audi electric SUV, can save up to 85% compared to filling a full tank of fuel (in India, the average cost for residential electricity is between Rs 5 to Rs 10 per kWh).

At an average one can expect a cost per km of Rs 1 for a zero-emission EV, while for an equivalent petrol or diesel vehicle, the cost per km could be up to Rs 7 per km. The annual cost savings achieved by switching to electric driving is significant! The sooner you switch to green cars, the sooner you can start saving money. That is simply the bottom-line!


At A Glance
EV Type:Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV)
Vehicle Type:SUV
Engine:Petrol-Electric
Available In India:No

Variants (4 Options)
Cupra Formentor V1 eHybrid
Cupra Formentor V2 eHybrid
Cupra Formentor VZ1 eHybrid
Cupra Formentor VZ2 eHybrid

EV Battery & Emissions
EV Battery Type:Lithium-ion
EV Battery Capacity:Available in one battery size: 12.8 kWh
Charging:DC charging not available. Onboard charger 3.6 kW (0% – 100%: 3 hrs 33 mins)
Charge Port:Type 2
EV Cable Type:Type 2
Tailpipe Emissions:26 – 32g (CO2/km)
Warranty:8 years or 100,000 miles

Charging Times (Overview)
Slow charging AC (3 kW – 3.6 kW):6 – 12 hours (dependent on size of EV battery & SOC)
Fast charging AC (7 kW – 22 kW):3 – 8 hours (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Rapid charging AC (43 kW):0-80%: 20 mins to 60 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Rapid charging DC (50 kW+):0-80%: 20 mins to 60 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Ultra rapid charging DC (150 kW+):0-80% : 20 mins to 40 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Tesla Supercharger (120 kW – 250 kW):0-80%: up to 25 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)

Dimensions
Height (mm):1510
Width (mm):1839
Length (mm):4450
Wheelbase (mm):2680
Turning Circle (m):11.4
Cargo Volume (L):345

1.4 e-HYBRID DSG-6 (V1 & V2)
EV Battery Capacity:12.8 kWh
Pure Electric Range (WLTP):34 miles
Electric Energy Consumption (kWh/100km):14.5 – 15.7
Fuel Consumption (MPG):201.8 – 235.4
Charging:DC charging not available. On-board charger 3.6 kW AC:(0% – 100%: 3 hrs 33 mins)
Top Speed:127 mph
0-62 mph:7.8 seconds
Drive:All-wheel drive (AWD)
Max Power (PS):204
Torque (Nm):350
Transmission:Automatic
Seats:5
Doors:5
Weight (kg):1,681
Colours:10
NCAP Safety Rating:Five-Star

Air Quality: The Basics


It does not matter where in India one lives, no one can escape the increased level of air pollution engulfing our villages, towns and cities, across the country. However, this is not unique to India.

Air pollution has been documented globally as one of the key issues in increased mortality rates, in particular, for those that are most vulnerable: the children and the aged. Increased air pollution has been linked to increases in premature deaths, higher rates of cancer, heart attacks, stroke and lung diseases.   

In India, air quality worsens closer to more densely populated urban centres, the 1st, 2nd and 3rd tier cities. Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Bengaluru are just some of the examples of cities with dangerous levels of toxic air pollution or poor air quality. In fact, air pollution levels have been so high in India in the recent years, that it has captured the attention of the world media. 

Many factors affect the level of air pollution, but one that is significant, is the pollution released from road transportation, commonly referred to as ‘emissions’ or tailpipe emissions. For the majority of the globe, to include, India, emissions from petrol and diesel vehicles contribute more than 30% to air pollution. This is an average, and certainly, in more populated cities like Delhi and Mumbai, the level of toxic contribution from vehicle exhausts will be even higher. The other major contributor to air pollution is energy production and consumptions (fossil fuels).  


So, what is air pollution?


  • Air pollution is the release of pollutants in our atmosphere that have a negative impact on the health of individuals and the environment as a whole. 
  • The majority of pollutants are invisible. The are minutely small particles (finely divided solids) or gases that cannot be seen with the naked eye. These extremely small solid or liquid particles are also called particulates. Examples are: fumes, smoke, dust and soot. The majority of these particulates are less than 10 micrometres.    
  • Air pollution can affect the environment both outdoors and indoors. There are a number of different types of pollutants, but the most well known are particulate matter, carbon dioxide, methane, carbon monoxide, sulphur dioxide and nitrogen dioxide.  
  • Both carbon monoxide (CO) and nitrogen oxides (NO2), contribute to smog formation, very common in the winter months. Sulphur dioxide (SO2) contributes to haze and also acid rain formation. Particulate matters also contributes to haze and acid rain. All the above negatively impact health by increasing irritation of breathing passages, aggravation of asthma and irregular heartbeat. 
  • Pollutants like carbon dioxide have a far reaching consequence on our lives. It is not only air pollution that it impacts, but as being a major source of greenhouse gas, CO2 has a long-term and detrimental impact on our environment and ecosystem. More commonly refereed to as ‘climate change’.
  • Most of us know in India are familiar with PM 2.5 (fine particulate matter). These are tiny particles or droplets that are two and one half microns or less in width. A micron is a unit of measurement of length equal to one millionth of a metre. An increase in levels of PM 2.5 concentrations result in an increase in unhealthy air quality, haze etc. Vehicle exhausts are a major contributor to higher levels of PM 2.5 in the air.    
  • Though measures like reducing traffic (odd-even system in Delhi), wearing air masks etc. can help reduce the impact of pollution, the reduction is not far-reaching. Zero-emission road transportation i.e. electric cars, are a panacea for a sustained and comprehensive improvement in air quality. The sooner, we in India, migrate to electric vehicles, the sooner can we start to improve our local air quality.  



Author

Ashvin Suri

Ashvin has been involved with the renewables, energy efficiency and infrastructure sectors since 2006. He is passionate about the transition to a low-carbon economy and electric transportation. Ashvin commenced his career in 1994, working with US investment banks in New York. Post his MBA from the London Business School (1996-1998), he continued to work in investment banking at Flemings (London) and JPMorgan (London). His roles included corporate finance advisory, M&A and capital raising. He has been involved across diverse industry sectors, to include engineering, aerospace, oil & gas, airports and automotive across Asia and Europe. In 2010, he co-founded a solar development platform, for large scale ground and roof solar projects to include the UK, Italy, Germany and France. He has also advised on various renewable energy (wind and solar) utility scale projects working with global institutional investors and independent power producers (IPP’s) in the renewable energy sector. He has also advised in key international markets like India, to include advising the TVS Group, a multi-billion dollar industrial and automotive group in India. Ashvin has also advised Indian Energy, an IPP backed by Guggenheim (a US$ 165 billion fund). He has also advised AMIH, a US$ 2 billion, Singapore based group. Ashvin has also worked in the real estate and infrastructure sector, to including working with the Matrix Group (a US$ 4 billion property group in the UK) to launch one of the first few institutional real estate funds for the Indian real estate market. The fund was successfully launched with significant institutional support from the UK/ European markets. He has also advised on water infrastructure, to include advising a Swedish clean technology company in the water sector. He is also a member of the Forbury Investment Network advisory committee. He has also been involved with a number of early stage ventures.

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