FIVE INTO ONE DOES GO (some text hidden)
By Andy Enright
Introductionword count: 130
Improving some cars is a tough task. Development cycles being what they are, as soon as a new car is launched, companies set about designing its successor. In order to do that, they must make a very swift and objective assessment of that car's areas for improvement. When Audi launched the A1 in original three-door form back in 2010, we loved it but its shortcoming was obvious. It was tiny. If the Ingolstadt company wanted to broaden the appeal of their pert city scoot, it needed a bit more in the way of rear passenger space and back seats that could function as something other than a place to sling your jacket. Cue the A1 Sportback. Here's what to look for if you're thinking of tracking down a used example.
Modelsword count: 16
5dr supermini (1.2, 1.4 petrol, 1.6, 2.0 diesel [SE, Sport S line, Style Edition, Black Edition])
Historyword count: 96
Audi announced the five-door Sportback version of the A1 in 2010, with the first cars arriving in UK showrooms in November 2011. The range mirrored that of the short-wheelbase A1, with buyers offered 86PS 1.2TFSI, 122PS 1.4 TFSI and 185PS 1.4 TFSI petrol engines as well as a 105PS 1.6 TDI diesel. In March 2013, Audi fitted DAB stereos to A1 models, while in June, Audi launched an A1 S line Style Edition, available in red, silver or black. A revised Audi A1 range was announced at the end of 2014 for the 2015 model year.)
What You Getword count: 234
Although the silhouette isn't quite as pure as that of the three-door A1, this Sportback model is still a handsome thing with the rear set of doors well integrated into its compact wheelbase. It's six millimetres taller and six millimetres wider than the three-door model and inside offers a smidgeon more head and shoulder room as a result. It also makes provision for a third passenger in the back, although it's a squeeze for adults. Luggage capacity is on a par with the three-door A1 - expect 270-litres with the backrests of the standard split/folding rear seat in place, or 920-litres with the seat folded. The retractable head restraints do not have to be removed to do this. The loading lip is a comfortably low 66 centimetres, and stowage can be further simplified by an optional luggage package which features divided storage compartments under the loading floor to prevent your bottles of Coke scrambling your eggs on the way home. The cabin is quiet and maturely finished with no speedometers the size of dinner plates or garish graphics. Audi contend that if you're downsizing from a bigger car, you expect big car sophistication and the A1 serves that up in spades. Everything is soft touch, silicon damped and consistent in feel and design. You'll need to work hard to spot compromises brought about by cost, fulfilling the car's original design brief to the letter.
To see the full road test text contact us on 0330 0020 227
Pictures (high res disabled)
Scoring (subset of scores)
Category: Small Runabouts
|Styling, Build, Value, Equipment, Depreciation, Handling, Insurance and Total scores are available with our full data feed.|