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Audi A1 Sportback (2018–)

Last updated 20 June 2019

All models get digital instrument cluster. Lots of personalisation options available.
Not a huge departure in terms of styling...
Updated 5 June 2019

Report of 2019 Audi A1 Sportback 1.5 35 TFSi 150 Start/Stop S Line Manual suffering "loss of throttle and very little torque in low gears, as and when it decides to pick up. This happened again on Monday...

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The entry-level Audi shares a platform with the Volkswagen Polo and SEAT Ibiza. Available as a five-door model only, the new A1 is longer, wide and lower than before. It's more angular in its design - a nod to the iconic UR-Quattro rally car from the 80s, says Audi. We say it looks like a shrunken Q2 with some extra creases added.

As is typical for Audi's range, the new A1 Sportback will be available in three different trim levels: SE, Sport and S-Line. The latter features larger air intakes, additional sill trims and a larger rear wing as well as various other cosmetic upgrades intended to give it a beefy appearance. Until a sporty S1 arrives (rumoured for 2019), the top version will be a 2.0-litre TFSI producing 200PS.

Other engines available at launch include a three-cylinder 1.0-litre petrol producing 116PS and badged the 30 TFSI, and a 150PS 1.5-litre four-cylinder dubbed the 35 TFSI.

An entry-level 25 TFSI with 95PS will follow. All engines bar the 200PS version will be available with a manual gearbox or seven-speed S tronic dual-clutch auto. The warmest engine in the range will come exclusively as an auto.

Buyers of the new A1 will get a choice of 10 colours which, in a bid to cater for younger buyers desperate for the ability to customise their car, can be combined with a contrasting roof colour.

Taking the S Line specification as a foundation, Launch Edition models will be offered in a range of vivid colours along with 18-inch alloy wheels finished in bronze, white or black, while darkened LED rear lights are said to reference the classic Sport Quattro. Audi badges are finished in black, while various exterior and interior styling packages will be available.

Audi says the cabin of its new A1 is driver focused, with a fully digital 10.25-inch instrument cluster standard on all models. An infotainment system previously used on larger Audis has trickled down to the A1, positioned towards the driver for ease of use.

Go for the Navigation Pack for a 10.1-inch MMI touchscreen with navigation and a higher specification Virtual Cockpit while the Technology Pack adds various internet-based services and wireless phone charging.

As well as being more premium and tech-packed, the interior of the revised A1 is also bigger than before. Luggage capacity has increased by 65 litres to 335 litres, and there's more head and legroom than before.

Driver assistance technology has also trickled down from elsewhere in the Audi range. Lane departure warning helps keep the car in lane at speeds of 40mph and above, while a speed limiter is fitted as standard. So is Audi pre sense front which uses a radar sensor to warn the driver of approaching obstacles such as other vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists.

Radar-based adaptive cruise is an option, whlie there are various parking systems from a reversing camera to a park assist feature which can automatically park the car in parallel or perpendicular parking spaces.

Alongside the standard suspension, a tauter sport set-up is available as an option. Buyers can also upgrade to adjustable dampers plus various other driver-focused features including a sound actuator (for a dose of fake noise), red brake calipers and larger brake discs. Audi's drive select system is also available, allowing drivers to select from four modes ranging from efficiency to dynamic.

List Price from £17,730
Buy new from £16,182
Contract hire from £184.79 per month

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