Review

Audi A1 Sportback hatchback

Price  £14,935 - £26,110

Audi A1 Sportback hatchback

reviewed by Carbuyer

Pros
  • Top-quality interior
  • Superb engines
  • Very stylish
Cons
  • Expensive to buy
  • Limited rear-seat space
  • Uncomfortable ride

At a glance

The greenest
1.6 TDI SE 116PS 5dr £16,010
The cheapest
1.0 TFSI SE 95PS 5dr £14,935
The fastest
2.0 TFSI 231PS quattro 5dr £26,110
Top of the range
2.0 TFSI 231PS quattro 5dr £26,110

"For a little extra money, the Audi A1 Sportback offers even greater versatility than the three-door A1."

The Audi A1 Sportback sounds like an all-new body shape, but in reality Sportback is what Audi calls its five-door hatchbacks. Going for the Sportback means you lose some of the three-door A1's youthful appeal, but it also means you get a lot more practicality. However, it's not as practical as a five-door VW Polo (as well as being more expensive) and it's not as much fun to drive as the new MINI five-door hatchback, either.

Apart from the extra doors and space, in all other respects the Sportback is the same as a normal A1, which means it comes with one of the nicest interiors in its class. Plus, the car can be brightened up with colourful trim, which will really appeal to younger buyers.

The A1 is available with a decent choice of petrol and diesel engines, ranging from a 1.0-litre petrol to a 1.6-litre diesel. The top-of-the-range model is now the Audi S1 quattro, which can get from 0-62mph in just 5.8 seconds. We’ve reviewed it separately.

The A1 Sportback range starts with the basic SE model, which gets a 6.5-inch colour display, DAB digital radio, alloy wheels and air-conditioning. Sport models add equipment such as sport seats, a sports steering wheel, sports suspension and 16-inch alloy wheels. S line models get stiffer S line suspension, 17-inch alloy wheels and a subtle body kit.

The S1 model is most striking of all, featuring quad exhaust pipes, bright xenon headlights and LED rear lights, plus adjustable suspension and quattro four-wheel drive.

MPG, running costs & CO2

4 / 5

All engines in the Audi A1 Sportback offer superbly low running costs thanks to clever technology

Engines, drive & performance

3.5 / 5

All Audi A1 Sportback engines are smooth, quiet and offer plenty of power

Interior & comfort

2.4 / 5

The Audi A1 Sportback is impressively comfortable for a small car, although high-spec models have firm suspension

Practicality & boot space

3.5 / 5

Audi A1 Sportback model has more space than standard A1, but is still far from spacious

Reliability & safety

4 / 5

Audi A1 Sportback provides five-star safety and top dependability

What the others say

4 / 5
based on 3 reviews
4 / 5
On our twisting test route, the two-cylinder mode didn’t have a chance to engage very often, but when we encountered a straight or downhill section of road, the switchover was imperceptible. Considering how popular stop-start has become, this fuel saving technology looks like being the next big thing.
4 / 5
Back-seat passengers get slightly more head- and shoulder room than they do in the three-door A1, thanks to the Sportback's extra height and re-designed rear seat. The wheelbase remains the same, so legroom and boot space are unchanged.
4 / 5
Exclusive to the Sportback is a contrasting roof to differentiate it from the 'smaller' A1, as well as a clever new engine that has the ability to shut down two of its four cylinders for super-economical driving.

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What owners say

2.8
2.8 /5 based on 5 reviews
40%
 people would recommend this car to a friend

Owner rating:

4 star   0
3 star   0

Common problems:

Last updated
17 Dec 2014
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