Seat boss: Thanks to VW “one of the world’s best technology platforms” for electric cars

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Seat boss: Thanks to VW

In an interview with the trade journal Auto Zeitung, Seat CEO Luca de Meo explained why he sees the Seat brand as a pioneer when it comes to connectivity, which electric cars can be expected from the Spanish VW brand and what Seat’s long-term strategy for electromobility looks like.

Initially, Seat is concentrating on the conventionally powered SUV Tarraco, which shares the platform with the VW Tiguan. The car is a “highly interesting and lucrative model” with high sales margins. This gives Seat “various opportunities to invest in new technologies. Think about the electrification and hybridization of certain models, or the necessary investments in terms of connectivity,” explains de Meo.

The first electric car from Seat can be expected in 2020: “We are starting with a sporty compact model that is slightly larger than the Leon,” says the manager. De Meo finds the design of the vehicle “great, and that’s not easy, because the electric cars are in principle relatively high” because of the battery installed in the underbody.

Access to Volkswagen’s modular electric car kit (MEB), “one of the world‘s best technology platforms,” as de Meo says, is helpful for Seat’s electric car strategy. This is “a huge opportunity for relatively small brands like Seat or Cupra.In the Volkswagen Group’s e-car offensive, Seat is the second group brand where, thanks to the MEB, “the new electromobility is beginning. Next year VW will bring the I.D., and right after that we come.”

Cupra is also becoming electric

Seat’s new sports car brand Cupra will also have purely electric models in the future. However, “mass is not necessarily the friend of sportiness,” as de Meo notes in view of the battery packs in electric cars, which weigh several hundred kilograms. “The colleagues in the test department are completely enthusiastic about the Cupra e-Racer, a concept vehicle with up to 680 hp.“ At Cupra there should be a mix of different drives: “This includes electrification, because the issue of CO2 also affects us, of course. There are also new plug-in hybrids.”.

Cupra is currently preparing to enter the ETCR electric touring car racing series, which will start in 2020. “We are currently working on optimizing the range,” says de Meo about the current status of the project. “Under extreme conditions, the vehicles have to manage up to 45 minutes with one battery charge. And we want to be faster than Tesla with the GT.”

When it comes to networking, de Meo sees Seat as a pioneer: “We are the first car manufacturer to integrate Alexa or Shazam, to name just two examples, into our vehicles. We will reinforce this trend. And we will continue to invest in intelligent mobility solutions.”

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