Cupra Formentor Interior Layout & Technology | Top Gear
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Sunday 1st October


What is it like on the inside?

Who turned out the lights? It’s dark inside the Formentor, despite the lashings of bronze trim. It’s a bit of a pity the cabin is so obviously inherited from Seat, in contrast to the bespoke bodywork, but the bean counters clearly won the boardroom over.

We question the logic of some of Cupra’s flourishes: the engine stop and mode buttons amid the steering wheel are easily confused, and at least once you’ll prod the ESP-off button next to the stubby gear selector, assuming that’s the engine start button (it is in the Ateca, after all).

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I'll try to get used to it. What else?

There’s much to like, though: the bucket seats up front (standard in higher spec models) are fantastic, there’s plenty of oddment storage and though the materials employed are sub-Audi, it’s all tightly put together.

Front and centre is Seat’s 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment. The screen size and resolution is very impressive, but the cheery coloured menus will take some learning, especially as there’s nowhere to brace your hand as you tap and swipe, so arriving at your chosen radio station can be a lottery.

More woes from the VW Group's button allergy?

Like the latest VW Golf and Skoda Octavia, heater controls are unilluminated touch-sensitive pads, which are an acquired taste we’re not very partial to. Cupra counters the lack of tactile switches with voice control, but given the trigger word is ‘Hola hola’, you’ll have to possess the embarrassment threshold of a Big Brother contestant to use it.

We've also had issues with the touch controls that Cupra uses for the panoramic roof and ceiling lights: they'll work for a while and then not work at all. To save you looking for the manual, if you need to close the sunroof, pull over and hold down the lock button on the key fob – it's set to close all open windows and it'll sort the roof for you while it's at it.

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Is it practical?

The back seats offer enormous legroom, and because Cupra’s interpretation of a ‘coupe-SUV’ doesn’t have a particularly swoopy roof, there’s plenty of headroom too. Eat your heart out, BMW X4. That said, while adults will be pleasantly surprised just how roomy the Formentor is, children not perched on booster seats will moan they’re missing out on a view of the countryside as it rushes past. The rear window is slim for style’s sake too, but luckily the parking cameras are some of the best in the business.

If you live the outdoor adventure life of someone in an SUV advert, you’ll be pleased to learn the boot is fairly generous with a reasonably low loading sill and nets for lashing down errant items. It does depend greatly on what engine you go for, mind: the base petrol offers you 450 litres of bootspace, but adding AWD nabs 30 litres of that and the PHEV version of the car has a less impressive 345 litres available.

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