Audi A1 Sportback (2018) Review
Audi A1 Sportback (2018) At A Glance
Insurance Groups are between 16–31
On average it achieves 78% of the official MPG figure
When Audi replaced the A1 in 2018, it did so with only the five-door Sportback model to make its premium small hatch challenger as practical as possible. Given the strength of opposition not only from MINI but also the likes of the Volkswagen Polo, Ford Fiesta and Renault Clio, this was a sound move. The A1 Sportback is also longer and wider to offer more space to compete with others such as the Renault Clio and Nissan Micra. A range of turbo petrol engines offers everything from frugal to fast, while trim options are more varied than the car it replaced.
Audi has dared to be a little funkier with the second generation of A1 Sportback, placing it ideally between the sobriety of the Volkswagen Polo and the style-led MINI.
This is not to say the A1 is small. Far from it as it has grown in every direction compared to the first generation of the model that was launched in 2010.
When Audi unveiled this replacement in 2018, the A1 had ditched the three-door model and stuck solely to the five-door Sportback version. This makes the A1 a more versatile and practical car for its owners, as well as giving the opposition more competition while not compromising on driving dynamics.
It’s good to drive in town or on the open road, though Audi has yet to learn lessons from the original A1 about suspension settings. This latest A1 Sportback comes with a standard supple set-up, but models with the Sport suspension remain too harsh on most roads.
Also ushered in with this A1 Sportback is Audi’s slightly confusing engine identifying nomenclature. It starts with the 95PS 25 TFSI petrol, which is the first of four turbo petrol motors on offer and has a five-speed manual gearbox or seven-speed S tronic auto. Next up is the 30 TFSI with 116PS and a choice of six-speed manual or the S tronic transmission.
Top of the pile for most trims is the 35 TFSI 1.5 with 150PS and only available with the S tronic gearbox. If you opt for the S Line Competition model with its 40 TFSI boot badge, you get a 2.0-litre turbo petrol motor with 200PS to make this the quickest A1 Sportback in the line-up and this model also comes with stiffer, adjustable sports suspension.
As for trim levels, Audi launched the A1 Sportback with SE as the entry-point to the range, but this has since been renamed Technik. It’s far from basic thanks to 15-inch alloy wheels, LED lights front and rear, while inside there’s Audi’s Smartphone interface and an 8.8-inch touchscreen for the infotainment.
Next in line is the Sport that adds larger 16-inch alloy wheels, rear parking sensors, cruise control and some sporty front seats. S Line customers are treated to 17-inch alloy wheels, exterior styling pack including a more aggressive front grille, and firmer Sport suspension.
There are three additional versions of the S Line, starting with the Contrast Edition that has 18-inch alloys, darkened headlight lenses, Python yellow paint.
It also has a gloss black roof, door mirrors and other outside details in this finish. Choose the Style Edition and you get different alloys in a bronze finish, while inside there’s and LED Ambient Lighting pack. The big change for the Competition is its more potent engine, but it also comes with red brake calipers and platinum grey wheels and door mirror caps.
Finally, the Vorsprung model ups the ante with its own 18-inch wheel design and front sports seats trimmed in Alcantara and leatherette. Audi also includes its MMI Navigation Plus with MMI touch infotainment as well as the Virtual Cockpit that lets the driver configure the main dash display with a variety of different screens.