Cupra to build the Tavascan in China for global markets
Cupra will produce the all-electric Tavascan in China and export it from there to sales markets such as Europe. However, with production in China for world markets, the Tavascan is likely to remain a one-off within the VW Group.
Volkswagen told Bloomberg that the SUV coupe, planned for 2024, will be manufactured at the MEB plant in Anting, as capacity in Europe is limited. “The plant in Anhui was the plant with the right capacity and technology at the time of production planning,” a Volkswagen statement said. But it said the group had no plans to produce other vehicles in China for export.
The Tavascan will be Cupra’s second electric model after the Born, which is known to be produced at the Volkswagen plant in Zwickau. As an SUV coupé, the Tavascan is likely to resemble the VW ID.5, Audi Q4 e-tron Sportback and Skoda Enyaq Coupé, which like the Cupra Born are built in Zwickau (VW and Audi) and Mlada Boleslav (Skoda). The only difference is that both plants are already working to full capacity, as the delivery times for the MEB models show. In order to use the existing capacities in Zwickau for those models that are only built in this plant, the ID.4, for example, is now also coming off the production line in Emden – and the ID.3 in Wolfsburg next year. Nevertheless, there was no space available for the production of the Tavascan in Saxony.
The plant in Anting, where the Tavascan is to be built instead, was built by SAIC-Volkswagen specifically for the production of MEB vehicles. In the factory, which is located in the greater Shanghai area, SAIC-VW produces the ID.4 X and ID. 6 X, for example – and for a little more than a year, the ID.3 for the Chinese market. This is interesting, since SAIC itself has meanwhile launched a real ID.3 competitor on the market with the MG4 Electric.
Seat had already presented a first concept car with this name at the IAA 2019 (then still in Frankfurt). About a year later, it became public for the first time that the company was working on a production version. The pictures published in the meantime show a design that is much closer to series production, but the basic features of the concept and the Cupra brand design are unmistakable.
There is still no definite information on the technology of the Tavascan. However, the powertrains of the other SUV coupés based on the MEB should be a good indication – despite the fact that they are manufactured in China.
The export of vehicles built in China is not without precedent even among German carmakers. BMW is known to be building the iX3 in China. At Tesla, all Model 3s and numerous Model Ys sold in Europe currently come from the Giga Shanghai, and Polestar is also currently only building in China. And the Dacia Spring also comes off the production line in the Far East.