With its large battery, the Cupra Born not only offers autonomy worthy of the best. And it also takes over the charging performance.
The Cupra Born XL is a car apart in the world of electric cars because, if the models in its segment generally carry batteries of 60 kWh on average, the Spaniard chooses a 77 kWh unit which we find usually in much larger family SUVs. Result: this competitor to the MG 4 Luxury and Renault Megane e-Tech has long-distance driving range on the highway! And she has nothing to envy them when it comes time to refuel.
Charging curve for the Cupra Born XL: a useful full tank in 28 minutes
The compact announces a maximum DC charging power of 170 kW. However, it can aim even higher in practice. Its SK On battery allows it, as on the Volkswagen ID. Buzz, to be able to reach a peak of 186 kW at the start of charging (at 13%). The charging curve is therefore identical, with a gradual drop in power up to a charging rate of 80%, where the terminal still displays 93 kW (- 50% compared to the observed peak). It is therefore no surprise that the end of charge is just as quick with copious amounts of power up to 100%. If the BMS (Battery Management System) system allows this gap, it is because the technology can handle these high powers. We can be confident, but we would still advise not to abuse it.
Because greedy users could be tempted to take advantage of the charging times of this Cupra Born XL more than necessary. Between 10 and 80% load, we measured a time of exactly 28 minutes (average power of 124 kW). It takes 7 minutes more to reach 90% and another 12 minutes to fill up completely. In the end, the entire exercise, which will rarely be repeated, requires only 47 minutes. Except for the ID. Buzz, only Korean women on the e-GMP 800V platform are below the 50 minute mark to reach 100%! Note that on a Total terminal with a maximum power of 175 kW, we clocked a time of 31 minutes on the 10-80% exercise.
|10 to 80%
|80 to 100%
|10 to 100%
|Cooldown time (in mins)
|Range gained (in km)
Autonomy recovered: 259 km in 30 minutes
During our long journey of 500 km via the motorway (see below), we measured consumption of 21.4 kWh/100 km, or an average range of 360 km with a full tank. On this basis, the Cupra Born can therefore recover 158 km in the time of a coffee, and 259 km in the time of a sandwich. It is placed between a BMW iX xDrive60 and a Kia EV6 RWD! For example, an MG 4 Luxury, which recharges quickly, recovers 185 km in 30 minutes.
|Cooldown time (in mins)
|Range gained (in km)
Cost of recharging the Cupra Born XL
Announced at 77 kWh to simplify the catalogs, this battery differs from the others: as with the ID Buzz, it offers a little more capacity than the 77 kWh CATL unit present in a Skoda Enyaq iV 80 for example. This is verified when doing the accounts: the Cupra Born consumed an average of 57.9 kWh between 10 and 80% load. In the end, we estimate its total capacity at nearly 79 kWh. Brief. It is with the Cupra Easy Charging subscription at €14.99/month that charging is most interesting at Ionity. The compact thus has an approximate cost price of €8.3/100 km on the motorway.
|Ionity (offers Cupra)
|Unit price (€/kWh)
|Total price (10-80%)
|Cost price (€/100 km)
Travel time for 500 km: 4 hours 50 minutes
The Cupra Born XL can very easily provide a little over 310 km of autonomy before turning its gauge red. On our route, the Ionity station at Maison-Dieu is located 300 km away. The crossing of Lyon always allows you to save money, there is no doubt that the compact can complete this route with just one recharging stop. Which it will do with the greatest of ease, since we arrived in front of the terminal with 8% of charge remaining. And we didn’t need to exceed the 80% mark to finish the trip and try to cross the finish line with almost 20% charge remaining. In the end, only 26 minutes of downtime were necessary before getting back on the road.
This brings the total journey time to 4 hours 50 minutes. This is the final stage of this Supertest, which allows the compact to climb, if it was necessary to remind us again, to the very top of the hierarchy: it dislodges from third place the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and is positioned just behind the BMW i4 eDrive40 and the Hyundai Ioniq 6, by far the fastest with us to date with a time of… 4 h 41.
The journey planner proved to be quite convincing on the road. But as always, you have to wait to drive several dozen kilometers on the motorway before he refines his proposals: from the start, only a 13-minute recharge 350 km from the starting point would have been necessary to complete the journey according to him. Utopian. On the other hand, its indications on recharging and the downtime to be expected were very precise once the system was calibrated.
Supertest Cupra Born XL: the results
The Cupra Born XL presented remarkable autonomy values for a compact sedan. With its battery with an official capacity of 77 kWh, it has arguments against the best SUVs on the market, which must use even larger batteries to compensate for their logically higher consumption: the nearly 460 km of mixed autonomy and the 360 km on the motorway are enough to seduce. And to make matters worse, it also benefits from recharging capabilities at the very top of the table since it can refuel in less than 30 minutes, with copious average power. Above it are only the untouchable Koreans based on e-GMP and luxury cars like the BMW i7 or the Mercedes EQE.
In short, the Cupra Born XL is undoubtedly one of the best electric cars currently on the market, and an alternative that is too often forgotten. Especially since there is nothing indigestible in terms of price: the Spanish is priced at €46,550 without options, like this test model. This is barely €1,000 more than the VZ L version, which has a 58 kWh battery. Its performance is similar, but its range is much more measured (421 km WLTP), while its battery is far from having the same performance in terms of recharging. Buyers would therefore be wrong to deprive themselves of it!
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