Read Caroline’s Cupra Born e-Boost review for everything you need to know about buying Cupra’s electric hot hatchback in Ireland.

The Cupra Born is one of most exciting electric hatchbacks on sale at the moment offering eye-catching design and some of the best handling and driving dynamics of any battery-powered hatch of this type.

In Ireland, the Born is available with two different battery sizes. The 58 kWh offers a range of up to 427 kilometres of range, while the larger 77 kWh can travel up to 552 kilometres on a single charge.

The Cupra Born 58 kWh with a standard 204hp motor is available from €40,080 including grants, while the Born 77 kWh e-Boost is available from €51,890.

The Cupra Born e-Boost on test for Changing Lanes
The Cupra Born e-Boost on test for Changing Lanes

What’s so special about the Cupra Born e-Boost?

The Born shares batteries and underpinnings with the popular Volkswagen ID.3. But Cupra offers the Born with a special performance package that’s not available for the ID.3 because Cupra is positioned as a sporty premium brand within the Volkswagen Group. The unique ‘e-Boost’ package ups power to 231 hp and adds stronger front brakes. It retails from about €45,830.

Cupra’s styling is also a little more daring and exciting. The Born is much sharper and sportier looking than the Volkswagen with Cupra’s copper trim accentuating its rock chick credentials.

19-inch alloy wheels come as standard on the Born e-Boost with a number of captivating styles available. There’s also the option to upgrade to 20-inch with performance tyres.

Sportier bumpers, side sills and a diffuser-effect in the rear bumper add to the Born’s hot hatchback looks. There’s a range of unique colours like Aurora Blue, Vapour Grey and Quasar Grey that really look good with Cupra’s contrasting copper trim and striking LED lighting at the front and rear.

It looks good inside too and the Born e-Boost has the extra power to really impress on the road.

Inside the new CUPRA Born
Inside the Cupra Born

Inside the Born e-Boost

The Born gets a bespoke cabin that really suits its more sporty positioning in the market. It’s finished well with some good quality plastics and more of Cupra’s signature copper trim.

The highlight is the sports seats with integrated headrests finished in soft fabric. They really make the cabin feel special. There’s also a Cupra-branded steering wheel, with e-Boost versions adding two satellite buttons to access the sportier driving modes more quickly.

The dashboard design is very minimalist with most of the car’s functions controlled from a large touchscreen with Cupra specific graphics and menus. It looks good but the lack of physical buttons for things like adjusting the climate control makes it a bit frustrating to use. This is not helped by haptic buttons on the steering wheel that are equally unsatisfying to use.

Still, it features modern equipment like a wireless smartphone charging pad, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The high spec includes heated steering wheel, heated front seats and reversing camera.

There’s loads of storage space and plenty of room for passengers thanks to an EV-specific platform. In the back that’s most obvious with a flat floor that runs the width of the car giving ample legroom. The boot offers 385 litres of boot space, which is a bit off the best in class like the Renault Megane E-Tech but still very usable – but there’s no where to store the charging cables when not in use.

The Born e-Boost is the most powerful of the range with 231hp
The Born e-Boost is the most powerful of the range with 231hp

Driving the Born e-Boost

The Born e-Boost is the most powerful of the range with 231 hp. Power goes to the rear wheels, which naturally adds a certain amount of dynamism and agility to the Born. Cupra has also made a few tweaks to the Born including a lowered, stiffer suspension, more responsive steering and lastly, stronger front brakes for e-Boost models.

It handles with some real style. Maximum power and torque is possible in the Cupra driving mode, with e-Boost versions doing the 0-100 sprint in just 6.6 seconds. It’s hot hatchback-like performance capable of throwing you back in your seat. Standard 58 kWh versions will do it in 7.3 seconds.

The Born still shares most of the same smoothness and refinement as the ID.3. It does ride a little firmer but it’s far from uncomfortable. While there isn’t quite the same excitement as driving a petrol-powered hot hatchback like a Volkswagen Golf GTI, the acceleration, handling and quick steering mean that there’s still plenty of fun to be had behind the wheel.

My average consumption was about 18.3 kWh per 100 kilometres during my time with the Born e-Boost.

DC fast charging is available up to 120 kW for the Born 58 kWh for an 80% battery charge in about 35 minutes at a high power charging station. While AC charging is possible up to 11 kW for a full battery in a little over 6 hours.

The Cupra Born e-Boost is a fun to drive electric hatchback
The Cupra Born e-Boost is a fun to drive electric hatchback

Did you like it?

The Cupra Born e-Boost stands out among electric hatchbacks with its stylish looks and sporty cabin. It’s good to drive and feels more driver-focused than rivals, while retaining much of the same comfort and smoothness as the best in class.

It’s not cheap to buy, particularly in e-Boost spec but it’s well-made, practical and truly fun to drive. So if that’s important to you, it would be hard at the moment to find a better electric hatchback to fit that bill.

Model tested: Cupra Born e-Boost 58kWh
 58 kWh
Range: 422 km (WLTP)
Power: 231hp
Torque: 310Nm
Top speed: 160 km/h
Acceleration (0-100 km/h): 6.6 seconds
Motor Tax: 
€120 per year


Written by Caroline Kidd

Founder and Editor of Changing Lanes, Juror for Irish Car of the Year