Electric cars are becoming more affordable.
The new Cupra Born electric hatchback will have a $59,990 price tag when it arrives in March, becoming the first electric car to combine 500-plus kilometre range with a price tag that starts with the number five.
Based on Volkswagen’s ID. 3, the Cupra Born does not share its platform or structure with combustion-powered vehicles, a quality that separates it from many sub-$100,000 electric cars.
The Born sends 170kW to the rear wheels through a rear-mounted electric motor that frees up the front end to focus on steering and stopping the car.
Capable of sprinting to 100km/h in seven seconds flat, the Born is billed as an electric hot hatch, though it has less power than the VW Golf GTI and weighs about half a tonne more.
Cupra Australia director Ben Wilks said it was important for the brand to deliver similar range and performance figures to the Tesla Model 3 at a more attractive price.
“We wanted the Cupra Born to arrive with pricing that bests comparable BEVs [battery electric vehicles], but most importantly is comparable to the hot hatchbacks that Australians love and really engage with,” he said.
“To combine a long 500km-plus EV range with instant electric performance, and controllable dynamics through the sharp steering and rear-wheel-drive chassis places the Cupra Born in an exclusive part of the market.”
Australian examples are loaded with a good degree of equipment as standard, including a digital dashboard and central touchscreen with smartphone mirroring, wireless charging, a 360-degree camera and dual-zone climate control.
Customers who want more can choose a $2900 interior package adding heated front seats with a massaging function, along with suede-like interior trim and a nine-speaker Beats stereo.
A $2600 performance package delivers adaptive suspension and swaps standard 19-inch wheels for wider 20-inch rims with low-profile Michelin performance tyres that reduce claimed range to 475km.
Both option packages make the car a four-seat proposition – the standard model has accommodation for five.
PRICE About $63,000 drive-away
MOTOR Electric, 170kW and 310Nm
WARRANTY/SERVICE 5-yr u’ltd km, TBC
SAFETY 7 airbags, auto emergency braking, active cruise control, lane keep assist, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert.
BOOT 385 litres
SPARE Repair kit