When the Audi A1 entered the market in 2011 it was well received as an upmarket compact hatchback, finding just over 13 700 buyers since launch.
Now Audi brings round two, the Audi A1 Sportback, pitched as an ideal urban commuter but also well-suited for longer journeys, with fully networked infotainment and interior features in line with the full-size class.
It’s longer by 56mm but width remains the same, with a wide track and short overhangs that make for a taut and sporty look.
Daytime LED running lights take inspiration from hydrofoil shapes in sailing, as do the design of the shutters in the main lights. The cabbie is available in an awesome set of 10 colours.
Then there’s plenty of choice for the customer. With three equipment lines, and numerous features, the opportunity for customisation off the factory floor is vast.
On the interior, Audi has leveraged off the smaller size by creating a distinctive cockpit character, with instrument clusters and controls being strongly driver-oriented. Various seat and upholstery options are available, as are decorative inlays and accents.
The increased length has contributed to more interior space, always a bonus with a small hatch, and luggage capacity has increased by 65 litres.
The digital graphics and smartphone connectivity are right up there with the best, as is the touch-screen infotainment centre.
But it’s the engines that make this cabbie so much fun. There is a choice of three petrol powerplants (1-litre, 1.5-litre and a range-topping 2-litre) with outputs ranging from 85kW to 147kW. Turbocharging and direct injection are standard.
Pricing starts at R359 900 with the range-topper at R488 000.