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Audi A1 Sportback hatchback (2012-2018) - Interior & comfort

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

Carbuyer Rating

3.5 out of 5

Owners Rating

3.6 out of 5

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Interior & comfort Rating

3.0 out of 5

As with most of Audi’s models, how comfortable your Audi A1 Sportback is depends a lot on which model you go for. Most cosseting of all are the basic SE models, which get softer suspension and smaller wheels that do a great job of soaking up bumps in the road. Sport and S line models have firmer suspension that might not be to everyone’s tastes, but Audi will let you order softer suspension at no extra cost.

Audi A1 Sportback dashboard

The great thing about the A1 is that Audi has perfectly transferred the beauty and classy design of its bigger, more expensive cars (such as the Audi A3 and Audi A4) to the A1. The dashboard is a beautiful thing to behold and its design is enhanced by the Sport model’s three-spoke leather steering wheel and stylish air-vent sleeves, which are finished in high-gloss black. You can also choose to customise them with contrasting colours, such as blue, red grey or white, for a fee. All A1 Sportbacks have a pop-up screen that displays trip computer and stereo information, and you can even have sat nav fitted retrospectively if you don’t add it when initially purchasing the car.

Equipment

The problem with Audi is that you need to tick lots of expensive options to equip your car, as standard kit isn’t that great. Even a handy armrest is £125 and Bluetooth phone connectivity isn’t standard either, unless you choose one of the Sport or S line models. However SE trim is equipped with a DAB digital radio and 15-inch alloys. You get larger alloys with the Sport or S line, but don’t expect climate control or heated seats. The S line does have bright xenon headlights and daytime LED running lights, however. A Black Edition trim adds gloss-black exterior trim for features like the grille and even the tailpipes, while adding climate control, unique wheels and an enhanced stereo.

Options

If you want to customise your Sportback, Audi has an options list on par with MINI when it comes to additional equipment and choice of colours. Like MINI, it groups options together in packs, so you can choose between Technology (for items like sat nav and Audi Connect), Comfort (for cruise control, light and rain sensors and auto-dipping headlights) and Design (for privacy glass, a panoramic sunroof and LED interior lights).

If you want your Audi A1 Sportback to stand out from the crowd, there are plenty of contrasting paint shades – from Vegas Yellow with pearl effect to Floret Silver with Scuba Blue. If you really want to set your car apart, though, Audi can create an almost-bespoke colour with the exact metallic or pearl-effect shade you want from anything in the range.

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As standard, the A1 Sportback has a good range of contrasting cloth trim colours. For £1,250 extra, you can get heated Super Sports seats, which come with two-way lumbar support and shaped side bolsters to keep you firmly in place when driving down your favourite B-road.

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Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

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