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CUPRA DarkRebel World Premiere

CUPRA DarkRebel Showcar Debut at the Volkswagen Group Night IAA in Munich

The covers are off the CUPRA DarkRebel. It is the maximum expression of the brand’s obsession. A car that pushes the boundaries of design and performance, that questions the way the car will be imagined and created in the future. It’s the physical translation of the first car fully created in the virtual space, for a future generation of drivers.

The CUPRA DarkRebel: Using Data to Design with the Hyper Configurator

More than 270,000 CUPRA configurations from the CUPRA Tribe – including brand ambassadors and FC Barcelona players such as Alexia Putellas, Marc ter Stegen, Ansu Fati and the actor Daniel Brühl – helped shape the design of the CUPRA DarkRebel. Data collected from the virtual Hyper Configurator was injected into the final design of the CUPRA DarkRebel, which has now moved from the virtual to the real world with the reveal of the physical version at the IAA in Munich.

The result is a 100% electric two-seat sports car with a shooting brake architecture that pushes the passion and disruptive mindset of the CUPRA brand. Incorporating an enigmatic exterior liquid body colour, light as a tangible material and heightened attention to sustainability.

According to Wayne Griffiths, CEO of CUPRA: "Thanks to the passion and creativity of the CUPRA Tribe, we have now been able to make one of our most powerful obsessions into a real showcar. The CUPRA DarkRebel is the maximum provocation of CUPRA design. It is a rebel with a purpose: to prove that electric cars in the future can be sexy and emotional”.

The DarkRebel Concept Intertwined with CUPRA DNA

Illumination is a key element in the design of the CUPRA DarkRebel with everything starting from the lighting of the logo. The vehicle’s radical sharp front look is focused by CUPRA’s iconic triangular light signature as it emerges from the body, bringing the car to life. The lighting concept is based on breaking down the CUPRA logo into three triangles, which are then applied as DRLs (Daytime Running Lights).

The vehicle’s central spine, like a sailboat keel made of glass connects the front and the rear of the CUPRA DarkRebel. This concept emphasises the vehicle’s progressive design, inspiring its sporty appeal.

Sensual surfaces with a strong combination of sharp lines, create tension in the design, expressing a concentration of energy and purpose. All underscored by the enigmatic liquid body colour.

The fluid character of the dark violet tone evolves and changes depending on how environmental light touches the vehicle’s body, enhancing the strong stance and setting the tone for the DarkRebel as an ultra-sporty car created to drive.

Seating the DarkRebel to the ground, its wheel design is influenced by the brand’s racing cars, with performances and efficiency key attributes. The triangular shaped CUPRA logo is expanded parametrically through the whole wheel, from the structure to the aero covers and design copper parts.

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The CUPRA DarkRebel’s cutting-edge exterior CUPRA design is enhanced by its dimensions of 4.5 meters in length, 2.2 meters in width, and 1.3 meters in height, the DarkRebel comes to life, especially when its doors open to a height of 2.2 meters. These helped achieve its 1/3 cabin in contrast to the 2/3 body proportions and strong shoulders that deliver its sporty soul.

“The CUPRA DarkRebel condenses all of the brand’s DNA and values. With wider shoulders, a long bonnet and lower cabin focused on the driver. It stands for people who love to drive and not be driven,” said CUPRA Design Director Jorge Diez. “The CUPRA Dark Rebel is designed to enter a new dimension where desire, emotion and pushing without limits are our obsession.”


A Rebel with a Cause

The CUPRA DarkRebel pushes the boundaries of design in its interior too. Its use of parametric design and additive manufacturing delivers a more substantive approach to sustainability. And on entering the vehicle, passengers find themselves in an embracing, radical, extreme environment.


The key element of the cabin is the central spine with its asymmetrical shapes, lightness, and sculptural appearance. Produced using the latest 3D metal printing technology, it provides structural performance with maximum lightness, emerging from between the base of the seats and extends forward to embrace the driver.

Once sat in the Supersport bucket seats, with headrests made from glass and copper inserts and covered with 3D knitting fabric, the driver sees the steering wheel, which combines geometries from the world of racing with the interactivity of the world of gaming.

The gear shifter is located in the central spine and made of exquisite glass, that illuminates and invites touch.

A performance focused sportscar both on the road and in terms of technological advancement. On the roof, a thermal camera monitors the condition of the cabin, and the intelligent climate control system adjusts the temperature and airflows accordingly, with the air exiting through gills located under the windscreen. The gills, lined with a breathable stretch fabric developed in the world of high-performance sport, push, and become visible depending on the amount of air supplied. Finally, the colour of the ambient backlighting in this area explains whether the interior is heating up or cooling down.

Communication through lighting continues thanks to the cabin’s use of a fluid canvas made from 90% biodegradable bamboo to create a perfect template for lighting effects, boosting the emotions and experiences of the occupants. Light flows through the front of the cabin, below the windshield, emerges from the sides of the seats, the seat backs are crowned with light, creating a vibrancy that can switch colour between dark blue to a shimmering reflective magenta and violet. Components, such as the steering wheel, add to the effect glowing with energy.

From the interior the driver is well placed to experience the CUPRA DarkRebel’s blistering performance on the asphalt. The CUPRA DarkRebel is the most powerful showcar ever made by the brand, with over 450 horsepower (peak power), accelerating from 0 to 100 km/h in under 4 seconds.

The CUPRA DarkRebel was unveiled at the Volkswagen Group Night and will be presented to the public at the CUPRA Open Space at the IAA Mobility 2023 in Munich, Germany (4-10 September).