We're taking a small break from our Auto Shanghai 2023 coverage to travel thousands of miles to the Nürburgring where Cupra has been spotted testing a Leon Sportstourer. SEAT's performance brand is preparing a mid-cycle update for its speedy compact estate, which had a 300-bhp 2.0 TSI engine judging by the quad exhaust. As a reminder, the Cupra Leon can also be had with a smaller 1.5 TSI producing half the power along with a 190-bhp 2.0 TSI.

The lack of a charging port on the driver's side front fender tells us the prototype was not a plug-in hybrid. As a refresher, Cupra sells the electrified Leon with a 1.4-litre engine and an electric motor providing a combined output of either 204 bhp or 245 bhp. Although there's camouflage applied at the front, it's hiding an updated fascia we saw nearly a year ago when the facelifted model was officially previewed.

2024 Cupra Leon Sportstourer spy photos

The 2024 Cupra Leon will be getting a more aggressive front bumper and slimmer headlights with a trio of LED daytime running light modules shaped like triangles. It will bring the hatchback/estate duo in line with the upcoming Tavascan and Terramar SUVs and the yet-to-be-released facelifts for the Born and Formentor. Last year's UrbanRebel concept also adopted the triangle motif for the headlights ahead of the production model's debut in 2025.

The official premiere is expected to take place later this year, with sales likely to commence by the end of 2023 or early 2024. Considering Volkswagen has already decided against making a ninth-generation Golf with combustion engines, this is likely going to be the last update for the mechanically related ICE-powered Leon. Cupra has already said it wants to become a purely electric brand by the end of the decade, so the petrol-fuelled Leon is running out of time.