Seats may unveil future EV models if development costs are low

Unlike Capra, which is rapidly electrifying its range, there is no EV in the current lineup of seats, which is limited to plug-in hybrids. Although seat-branded EVs are not a priority at the moment, the Spanish automaker could get an EV range in the future when development costs are reduced.

Despite having access to VW Group’s MEB architecture, Seat has not yet used it, its only BEV is now off Mii Electric. Cupra, on the other hand, is already offering a Born compact hatchback that will be followed by a Tavascan SUV in 2024 and an UrbanRevale crossover / Supermini in 2025. In fact, these two models were initially planned to be offered by SIT but the board decided to go for Sportier and more premium Capra brands instead of VW Group.

See also: The new 2024 Cupra Terramar has been released as a hybrid-only compact SUV

The Seat Leon Hybrid has a plug-in hybrid powertrain, an EV variant of which has been scrapped from the start for an MQB-based compact hatchback.

When asked about the seat’s electrification plan, R&D boss Werner Tietz told Autocar: “For now, electrification is still a bit expensive. We think we need to focus on electrifying Capra, and when the cost of components goes down – batteries and e-machines become cheaper – then we can talk again and talk about seats again. ”

Tietz defended the strategic decision to prioritize Capra at the moment, saying the seat has a brand new Leon, unveiled in 2020, along with the recently facelifted Ibiza Supermini and Arona B-SUV. The rest of the seat lineup includes the Ateca (facelifted in 2020) and Tarraco (unveiled in 2018) SUVs.

The R&D boss of the seat further said that Kapra cannot replace the seat as the two companies have separate customers. He noted that the overlap between Seat and Kapra customers was only 10-15 percent, while there was “almost no overlap” with other brands in the VW Group.

Last year, there were reports that seats and caps would share fewer models in the future, widening the gap between them. Still, both brands are sourcing their components from the VW Group’s Parts Bin, which makes mechanically-related models inevitable, although part-sharing won’t come in the amount of existing seats / Kupra Leon or Attic.

As Europe prepares for an ICE sales ban in the 2030s, the seat will inevitably have to be electrified at some point in the coming years, as current models move toward the end of their life cycle and compete to electrify Europe.

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