Audi has proved its small cars can be just as upmarket as its larger ones, and taken the fight to the MINI Hatch and Citroen DS3. The Audi A1 is available as a three-door hatchback and a five-door version it calls Sportback, which is more practical. Underneath, the A1 is closely related to the Volkswagen Polo but you wouldn’t know it, thanks mainly to its curvaceous roof, which is available in contrasting colours. Turbocharged petrol and diesel engines blend performance and efficiency.
- Stylish looks
- High-quality interior
- Strong resale values
- Firm ride
- MINI is more fun to drive
The Audi A1 is a stylish entry into the growing niche of upmarket superminis, which was invented by the MINI Hatch and also includes the Citroen DS3. These cars are the perfect fit for high-flyers living in the city, or those who simply don't want a big car yet still crave luxury and the latest technology.
There's a choice of either the standard three-door model or a five-door version called the Audi A1 Sportback, which is more practical, particularly for buyers with children.
Whether you need to get from A to B economically, or you want a car that can accelerate from 0-62mph in just 5.8 seconds, there's an A1 for you. The petrol engine range features 1.0 and 1.4-litre engines and those seeking lower running costs can choose from a 1.6-litre diesel.
The quickest version of the A1 is the Audi S1 quattro, which packs grippy four-wheel drive and a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine. There are a number of different trims to choose from and a wide range of options to customise your A1.
But no Audi A1 is quite as much fun to drive as the MINI. Instead, it triumphs as a small car that feels big inside and makes an excellent motorway cruiser.
- Top-quality interior
- Superb engines
- Very stylish
- Expensive to buy
- Limited rear-seat space
- Uncomfortable ride
The five-door Audi A1 Sportback is a more practical version of the three-door Audi A1 supermini. It costs around £500 more than the three-door, and it's slightly taller and wider, so has more head and shoulder room in the back. However, boot space is the same as the three-door's at 270 litres, which is a lot better than the rival MINI hatchback. The A1 Sportback uses the same range of turbocharged petrol and diesel engines as the standard A1, all of which come with stop-start as standard.