SEAT is kicking off its e-mobility offensive at Geneva Motor Show. In the framework of one of the main meeting points for the automotive industry, the brand is presenting its vision of electric technology applied to such diverse vehicles as an urban two seater or a high performance CUV (Cross Utility Vehicle), two complementary alternatives for today's mobility needs.
The company is presenting two concept cars for the first time globally in Geneva: the el-Born, its first 100% electric vehicle based on the Volkswagen Group's MEB platform, and the CUPRA Formentor, a high performance plug in hybrid CUV with CUPRA DNA which is the first vehicle developed specifically for this brand. The SEAT Minimo is also making its first appearance at the motor show; it is a forward looking city ally that is going to revolutionise urban micromobility. They all underscore the company's commitment to developing more sustainable mobility.
SEAT has equipped all three concepts with hyperconnectivity technology, featuring breakthroughs such as voice controlled infotainment systems, which the company has developed in recent years and which as made SEAT a front runner in this aspect. Electrification, connectivity and micromobility, together with records sales and financial results, are the main assets that shape SEAT as a future proof company.
At the press conference to present the brand's latest innovations in Geneva, SEAT President Luca de Meo states that "after three consecutive years of growth and posting a historic record in 2018, we come to Geneva with three powerful news and essentially the message that this company has never been as competitive as it is today, and it will continue to be strong tomorrow and the day after tomorrow."
SEAT has broken financial and sales records over the past years, boosting the expansion of the brand and establishing it as one of the fastest growing car makers in Europe. After closing 2018 with its highest sales figures ever, it went on to maintain double digit growth in the first two months of 2019 (88,900; +12.8%).
el-Born, electrifying SEAT
The el-Born concept car is the first SEAT conceived as an electric vehicle, and it will reach the market in 2020. Created to spearhead SEAT's e-mobility offensive, it is a real game changer for the company, both for its features, which meet today's mobility needs, as for the changes involving the company's purchasing, sales and marketing strategy, among others. As a brand with a customer base that is 10 years younger than the European average, SEAT is going to play a key role in bringing e-mobility closer to young drivers.
SEAT will be the second brand of the Volkswagen Group to build a car on the MEB platform, and a new generation of products based on the most advanced electric and connectivity technology will roll off its assembly lines. SEAT's first 100% electric car will be designed and developed in Barcelona and manufactured at the Group's plant in Zwickau, Germany.
The el-Born model takes its name from one of Barcelona's most emblematic neighbourhoods, which has been the source of inspiration for SEAT designers and engineers who created a sporty vehicle equipped with the most advanced electric technology.
With a real world range of up to 420 km based on the WLTP drive cycle from its 62 kWh energy dense battery pack, the vehicle is ready to travel beyond the city limits. And with compatibility with up to 100 kW DC supercharging, the battery can be returned from 0 to 80% in as little as 47 minutes.
CUPRA Formentor, the manifesto of the brand
Following a complete year of operation as an independent brand, CUPRA is unveiling its Formentor concept in Geneva, the first model to be developed specifically by and for CUPRA. This CUV incorporates all the character traits of a brand such as CUPRA - uniqueness, sophistication and performance.
The car, which will reach the market in 2020, was named after cape Formentor, one of the most beautiful, wildest and therefore exclusive capes on the island of Mallorca and a name that evokes power, strength and safety.
SEAT continues its sales growth in 2019 while CUPRA deliveries go up.
With the Formentor, the brand's most emotional and technologically advanced model, CUPRA celebrates its first anniversary full throttle by entering a new segment and committing to an innovative high performance plug in hybrid engine. The Formentor revs up the shift towards electrification and previews the design direction of future CUPRA models.
After a successful first year on the market, selling 14,499 cars and registering a 40% growth, CUPRA is consolidating its own path. In the first two months of 2019, the brand increased sales by 101.4%, with a total of 3,600 units. CUPRA is rolling out a network of 280 specialised selling points all over the world, and has set the goal of doubling its sales within the next three to five years.
Minimo, the ally for the city
With the Minimo, SEAT takes a step forward in shaping the future of micromobility. The Minimo, which was shown last week at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, combines the best of a car and of a motorcycle. This electric concept delivers excellent handling and easy parking, and features the comfort and the safety of a vehicle and the agility of a two wheeler. It is a leap in SEAT's urban micromobility strategy and expands the easy mobility ecosystem powered by the Barcelona brand. The company wants to listen to citizens and institutions to further develop the concept with their input.
The name Minimo stands for its minimum size and maximum mobility. It has been designed with the needs of future cities in mind, where different vehicles will operate on just a few mobility platforms. Because of that, it has a battery swap system that allows full vehicle charging in just a few minutes and provides a range of 100 kilometres. The set up of the vehicle can be adjusted via smartphone according to user profile, and it has 5G connectivity, Google voice assistant and a digital key for a seamless digital experience.
5G technology is going to be key for the automotive sector in the future, SEAT is participating at the Mobile 5G Barcelona, a project that aims to promote the city as one of the benchmark European capitals of 5G technology. In this context, SEAT and Telefonica launched the 5G Connected Car pilot project at the MWC, the first to be carried out on city streets in Europe to demonstrate how the vehicle communicates with surrounding infrastructure and other cars as an initial stage for achieving cooperative, autonomous driving.
With the step forward in e-mobility shown at the Geneva Motor Show, SEAT reasserts its commitment to sustainable mobility. By incorporating 100% electric vehicles, designed for more efficient journeys within cities, and providing high performance vehicles equipped with hybrid engines, SEAT points the way forward of its contribution to a decarbonised society, as set out in the Paris Agreements.
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