IT'S not hard to see why the latest model from Spanish performance car maker Cupra was given the name Formentor.
Just like its namesake - an area on the northernmost point of Majorca - it has a rugged and dramatic appearance and always promises an element of excitement.
The Formentor is the first model developed exclusively by Cupra, the sporting, upmarket brand of SEAT.
This trendy, sporting coupe crossover has a dramatic macho appearance with bold cuts and curves in the metal and a striking grille with the copper coloured Cupra symbol at the centre of it.
On the inside the entry-level 1.5-litre, V1 model is a little unassuming with a plethora of black, although copper coloured highlights on the air vents and the steering wheel and copper coloured stitching on the doors and dashboard do give a nice contrast.
The 10.25-inch virtual instrument screen immediately in front of the driver offers a choice of six different displays ranging from the traditional speedometer and rev counter to a minimalist digital readout only.
Sitting high on the centre of the dashboard is an impressive 12-inch iPad-style touch screen for the satellite navigation system as well as most of the car's onboard functions, ensuring the Formentor has a clutter free look with a distinct lack of buttons and switches.
It's all clear and concise although I found certain features required too many on-screen actions taking the driver's eyes off the road for far too long.
Considering the model driven here is the lowest spec level - the V1 - and boasts the lowest powered engine in the range it's very well equipped and delivers sharp, punchy performance.
There's a choice of driving modes and if you opt for Sport mode everything tightens up nicely to give more responsive acceleration and heavier weighted steering for more inspiring motoring.
With a price tag of just over £27,000 the Cupra Formentor 1.5-litre, V1 is very competitive indeed.
The ride as you would expect is slightly on the firm side but never at the expense of comfort and the cabin is always pleasantly quiet thanks to a high level of soundproofing.
The Formentor handles well at speed and flows through fast bends with an inspired amount of grip, no body roll and no nasty surprises.
High backed sports seats with good side support hold you comfortably in place and legroom in the rear is generous with plenty of space beneath the two front seats to allow rear travellers to stretch their legs.
There's three zone climate control, keyless entry/exit and starting, an artist's pallet of ambient lighting colours, a hill holder clutch, and a whole gambit of safety features as well as smart 18-inch black and silver alloys.
In this format the Cupra Formentor is a sensibly priced, generously spacious family SUV with a distinct sporting bias which will appeal to a lot of buyers.