I was fascinated by all the improvements made by the Cupra brand over a VW ID.3 with Cupra Born when announced last year. Reviews from What Car and carwow seemed to confirm this belief.

Earlier this week, Bjorn Nyland performed his 1000km challenge with a Cupra Born 58 and remarked about the poor efficiency but consistent fast charging speed without coldgating.

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Is Cupra Born 58 inefficient compared to a VW ID. 3?

This blog investigates the design decisions and potential inconsistency in Bjorn's testing that might have inadvertently contributed to this conclusion.

Weight & Dimension

As per the EV database, the weight of a VW ID.3 Pro (1812kg) and Cupra Born 58 (1811kg) is almost identical. While 61cm longer, Cupra Born is 28cm shorter than ID.3, offering a sportier look.

Cupra Born Dimensions

As per Bjorn, the resulting design change has increased the weight of the Cupra by 40kg.

# Car Weight (kg)
1 Cupra Born 58 1880
2 VW ID.3 1840

As per the brochure, Cupra has used Aluminium for battery casing and body structure to reduce weight, which appears insufficient.

Weather & Tyre

We noticed that almost all tests performed by Bjorn with VW ID.3 were on summer conditions resulting in a lower Wh per km (higher efficiency).

Cupra Born Vs VW ID.3 Efficiency

When comparing the two models with the 19inch wheels, we found that Cupra Born had an efficiency drop of around 10%, explained with temperature difference alone.

Cupra Born Vs VW ID.3 19inch wheels

At 167 Wh/km, Cupra Born even matches the efficiency provided by the EV database (166 Wh/km).

No coldgating

In Bjorn's tests, Cupra Born 58 consistently charged above 120 kW at cold weather conditions despite not scavenging heat to pre-condition the battery. This observation is inconsistent with the charge curve data from Fastned which indicates a max charge rate of 100 kW.

Fastned charge curve for Cupra Born

We believe this new behaviour is thanks to the software improvements announced in ID. Software 3.0 being already available in Cupra Born 58.

Conclusion

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We, therefore, do not agree with Bjorn's assertion that Cupra Born 58 is less efficient than VW ID. 3.

The design improvements, improved charge rates, without compromising efficiency make Cupra Born 58 a great car for your shortlist this year.

References

EV database for VW ID.3 Pro

EV database for Cupra Born 58 kWh

Cupra Born Brochure