Can the Cupra Ateca beat the lighter and more aerodynamically efficient VW Golf R on a drag race? Physics say no – but ABT says yes, provided that you install their software upgrade.
High-performance compact SUVs are slowly but steadily becoming a thing, and the Cupra Ateca is one of the first of the breed. Power comes from VW Group’s turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder producing 296hp (300PS) and 295lb-ft (400Nm) of torque. A seven-speed dual-clutch transmission sends power to all four wheels, making the Cupra Ateca capable of a 0-62mph (100km/h) in 5.2 seconds and of a 153mph top speed (247km/h).
While these performance figures are more than good enough, the extra bulk of the Cupra Ateca means it will always be a little bit slower than the VW Golf R, with which it practically shares its powertrain. However, for those who want their compact SUV to beat hot hatches on a straight line, ABT offers a simple chip tune to make it happen.
Carwow raced the Cupra Ateca on its stock form against the Golf R just to see what the differences are and then flashed the ECU to repeat the process. ABT promises 345hp (350PS) and 324lb-ft (440Nm) of torque with its tune, an increase of 49 hp and 29 lb-ft compared to the stock output.
But how does ABT’s software upgrade translate on the drag strip? Can the more powerful, but heavier and larger, Ateca actually beat the all-mighty Golf R? Let’s find out.