The new Audi A1 Sportback: Big car luxury in a stylish little package

“The new Audi A1 Sportback: Big car luxury in a stylish little package”

  • Fun, sporty design

  • Stylish, high-tech cabin

  • Strong engine line up

82%

Overall Rating

  • At the pricier end of the market

  • Limited legroom in the back

  • Expensive (& tempting) option list

Overall Rating

Overview

Audi have just introduced their new A1 Sportback and its edgy new design looks set to give BMW’s recently facelifted MINI Hatch a run for its money. The taut lines, wide track and short overhangs give the baby of the Audi range a sporty new look and a meaner, more aggressive stance. They’re certainly not after the ‘cute’ tag with this one.

Like what you see?

Find a dealer
Subscribe to our channel
Follow us on Twitter
Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Instagram

Interior Gallery

Loading...

Space & Practicality

It’s also grown quite a bit in size on the previous model and the bootspace now measures in at 335 litres which is decent enough, depending on what you compare it to. It’s quite a bit bigger than the MINI’s 278l, but still smaller than that of the Volkswagen Polo which measures in at 350l.

Space in the back is unsurprisingly limited, but it’s not bad either. All Sportbacks are five door so it’s easy to access and headroom is fairly generous thanks to its boxy shape. Legroom might be a bit of a squeeze depending on how tall your driver is and you can forget about fitting three adults in a row because it is quite a narrow bench. Kids on the other hand should be fine and there are Isofix anchors for their childseats.

Equipment and Safety

There’s no end to the tech available in the tiny but well-appointed cabin – which is a miniature version of what’s happening further up the Audi food chain. Like its tiny premium rivals, the scope for personalisation is also huge with a choice of contrasting roof designs and vibrant colour pallet to choose from.

Standard features on the A1 include alloy wheels, a leather multi-function steering wheel and a touchscreen multimedia display – an easy and instantly familiar system to use.
That starts at €24,500, but you can upgrade to the SE model which at €26,550 adds larger wheels, cruise control, and parking sensors. For the ultimate baby Audi experience you’ll  want to upgrade to the S-Line, which adds the sporty S-Line styling, 17 inch alloy wheels, LED lights, scrolling indicators and sports seats, but unfortunately that also ups the asking price to a shade under €29,000.

There’s also a long and tempting option list which is where you’ll need to exercise a bit of self-control lest you end up with a price tag far beyond what makes sense for a super mini, even one as nice as this. Highlights of what’s available include Alcantara and leather upholstery, heated seats, an interior design pack, Drive Mode Select, Parking system plus, a Bang & Olufsen sound system, Adaptive cruise control, Ambient lighting and MMI Navigation Plus which will project your driving route directly to the Virtual Cockpit right in front of you.

Performance & Running Costs

The engine line-up is purely petrol and the 1.0l 116hp TFSI 30 looks set to be one of the more popular choices here. It’s availabel as both a six-speed manual or with the S-tronic automatic transmission. There’s also a 1.5l 150hp version, again available in both manual or automatic, or at the top of the range at the moment a 2.0l 200hp version for some proper tiny thrills.

Even in its least powerful combination the A1 is tonnes of fun to drive. There’s plenty of power available from the off, good speedy progress thereafter and a nice light feel to the controls, as well as the car itself. Manual Audis might be few and far between these days but the gearshift is pleasant and direct, and offers an involving and rewarding drive.

While the body control is very good, it doesn’t quite have that go-kart feel of the MINI around bends but it still offers enough engagement to raise a smile. One slight niggle comes in the form of the poor visibility caused by the thick C-pillar – it does make things a little tricky if you’re reversing out of your driveway or a parking space and for some reason the only thing not specced on our test car is a reversing camera.

On a more positive note, running costs are suitably low for a city car with a claimed fuel economy of 4.9l/100km and a low Motortax bill of just €200. (NEDC figures)

Reliability & Residuals

You do pay for the premium build quality but the upshot is that it will hold on to its value well on the used market, even more so because it’s a small petrol which there will always be demand for. The engines and components are well tested across the Volkswagen Group range and there’s a three year manufacturers warranty as standard.

Find One
Build One

Like what you see?

Find a dealer
Subscribe to our channel
Follow us on Twitter
Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Instagram
Details correct at time of publication
47 Shares