The Cupra Born helped me answer a key question: Could a full-electric compact hatchback become my one and only car? After a 600 km (373 miles) test drive the answer is: probably not.
The Cupra Born, the first battery-electric car from the Volkswagen Group subsidiary, uses the company’s MEB platform. Other cars on the platform are the VW ID3 hatchback and ID4 crossover, Skoda Enyaq iV and Audi Q4 e-tron.
The Born has a sportier look than its siblings and special features such as an e-Boost that increases the maximum power output to 228 hp from 201 hp for 30 seconds at a time, which helps it top the ID3's 201 hp.
The Born also has dynamic chassis control as an option to improve handling. The driver can modify the response of the acceleration, steering and suspension through five driving modes that include Range (to save energy) and the sportiest option, called Cupra.
The version I drove was equipped with a 58-kilowatt-hour battery that Cupra says has a WLTP consumption of 15.4 kWh per 100 km and a 420-km range. The Born is also available with a 77-kWh battery, with a 548-km range.
The Cupra Born offers a very pleasant drive, with good acceleration -- 0 to 100 kph (62 mph) in 7.3 seconds -- and agile handling, although the suspension felt a bit stiff on bumpy country roads.