He arrived at Seat Sport as soon as he finished his degree in 1997 and, after going through Peugeot, he returned to the Spanish firm, which now focuses on its sports car subsidiary, Cupra, his activity in competition. And, after winning in the World Rally Championship and the World Touring Car Championship, now the efforts are focused on electric racing. “The situation is curious,” he explains Xavi Serra, the competition director. “We are the only brand that competes in Formula E, Extreme E and ETCR. There is no other brand in the world that does it. Only McLaren comes close, which is in two of them.
And it is that, according to Serra, “Cupra’s bet in competition is electric. We will continue to serve our combustion vehicle customers with the León, a car with which we continue to win various national championships, but our future lies elsewhere. We want to be pioneers and we will not be in classic championships. It is not easy to change the ‘petrohead’ philosophy, but our future is heading towards other goals. And not only in electric vehicle competitions, but also we are making a strong commitment to research and development in the virtual world”.
And the ‘electric’ hits have not been long in coming, as shown by the titles obtained in the ETCR, the European Touring Car. “We are very proud of those successes,” acknowledges Serra. “It is a championship in which we compete against an automotive and competition giant such as Hyundai, and winning the championship is of great value to us.”
“But the competition also helps us to evolve series vehicles”, says the competition director of the Spanish firm. “In fact, Mattias Ekstrom and Jordi Gené worked on the development of the Born model. And now we have the UrbanRebel prototype, a model that will be the future in competition and on the street. It is a car that can do everything, as shown by the fact that we have competed in the Race of Champions in Sweden with it”.