Audi A1 Review

Side view of a blue Audi A1 with a black roof in the countryside

The Audi A1 has been produced by the German brand since 2010, after being revealed at the Geneva Motor Show the same year. Initially it was launched as a three door model only before the five door Audi A1 Sportback was introduced in 2012.

Now in its second generation, the Audi A1 Sportback is still the smallest car in Audi's range but packs a lot of great equipment and style into the model. Our Audi A1 review will guide you through the current model to highlight its successes and help you to decide which version is the best for you and your needs.

Design and Style

The biggest change in this model version of the Audi A1 is that there is no longer a three door option in the line up. This follows a shift in the market towards less three door models being produced on existing models. This makes the A1 more versatile and suitable for families or those that usually have more than just one passenger in the car.

It's built on the Volkswagen Group's MQB platform which is shared with the VW Polo and the Seat Ibiza so it guarantees tried and tested quality. Don't be worried that you'll lose any of Audi's signature style however, that is still firmly in place thanks to the strong front grille and matching air intakes and the long narrow headlights that are distinguishably Audi.


The Audi A1 interior has been given a major upgrade since it's previous version. There's no longer an infotainment screen that just out from the dashboard, instead there's an integrated 8.8 inch touch screen and a fully digital dash for the driver. It really brings the Audi A1 into the now and places it directly against rivals such as the VW Polo and the SEAT Ibiza for style.

It's a great move on Audi's part to highlight that the Audi A1 deserves its place in the premium supermini class and that even small cars can be a technology haven for drivers.

The layout itself is simple and streamlined which makes it incredibly user friendly. Audi have opted to keep physical dials and controls for the air conditioning system, an ever popular choice with drivers compared having it integrated into the touch screen, and additional controls on the steering wheel allow you to control media from your fingertips.

Opting for anything above the entry level Technik model will give you sports seats for the driver and front passenger, giving more ergonomically designed support. This is paired with manual lumbar support and additional seat adjustment to be able to get yourself as comfortable as possible.

Comfort and Practicality

Passengers in the front seats will have 1019mm of headroom, only 10mm less than the larger Audi Q2 and 27mm more than the Ford Fiesta. Unfortunately for those in the back seats there will less at 944mm so it's not going to be ideal for taller passengers.

As a small car the Audi A1 Sportback has a great amount of boot space available with 335 litres available with all five seats in use. This is much more than some other supermini cars, for example the Ford Fiesta offers 292 litres with all five seats in use, but chances are if you're buying an Audi A1 it's not because you need a huge car.

Folding the rear seats down open the space further to give you 1090 litres of space and a flat loading bay. As well as this, the rear seats fold in a 60:40 split so if you need to carry passengers and lots of luggage you can still do so.

Performance and Engine Options

The current Audi A1 model give you the choice of 3 turbo charged petrol engines: 25 TFSI, 30 TFSI, and 35 TFSI. Audi have ditched the diesel engine entirely from the range as it moves towards a more sustainable offering.

The standard engine option is the 25 TFSI which is available as a five speed manual or an automatic and has an output of 95PS. You can expect good fuel economy from this, with a WLTP combined cycle mpg of 51.4 and fairly low CO2 emissions too at 124g/km. If you're looking for the automatic transmission you'll need to opt for the Sport trim upwards as it's not available on the entry level Technik.

The mid level engine is the 30 TFSI, again available with a six speed manual or automatic transmission, available on all trim levels, and 110PS. The combined mpg for this engine is 53.3, making it the best fuel economy from the range, and it's CO2 emissions are lower than the entry engine at 120g/km.

The top engine choice is the 35 TFSI, an automatic that is only available on the S Line and Black Edition models. It has the quickest 0-62mph time of 7.7 seconds thanks to its power of 150PS. This does mean that it's fuel economy is lower than the other engine options, with a combined mpg of 45.6 and CO2 emissions of 140g/km.

Trim Levels

There are four trim levels available on the Audi A1: Technik, Sport, S Line, and Black Edition.

The entry level Technik will give you 15 inch alloy wheels, dynamic suspension, automatic LED headlights with LED rear lights and dynamic indicators, LED daytime running lights, rear fog lights, matt black exterior details, electrically folding and adjustable heated door mirrors, manual height adjustment for the front seats, 3 spoke leather multifunction steering wheel, height and reach adjustment for the steering column, heat insulating windscreen and side windows, heated rear windscreen,

In terms of interior technology, the Audi A1 has had a huge upgrade from its predecessor. An 8.8 inch touchscreen sits in the centre of the console with Apple Carplay and Android Auto compatibility. It also has a voice control system, Bluetooth, 6 passive speakers, and two different USB charging points.

This is paired with a 10.25 inch digital cockpit for the driver which displays fully digital versions of classic instrument dials and also information on speed, time, temperature, fuel level, gear change recommendation, and music information.

Upgrading to the Sport adds 16 inch alloy wheels, Audi Drive Select, exterior details in matt black and matt aluminium, front sports seats, manually adjustable lumbar support for the front seats, accent areas in silver grey with a diamond paint finish, aluminium interior elements, cruise control, and rear parking sensors.

The Audi A1 S Line models then add 17 inch alloy wheels, sport suspension, S Line badges on the front wings, S line exterior bumpers, S Line roof spoiler, body coloured side sills, front spoiler clip and rear diffuser clip in matt platinum grey, front sports seats in part cloth and part leatherette with an embossed S logo and contrast stitching, S badging on the steering wheel with contrast stitching, black cloth headlining, door sills with aluminium inlays and the S logo, stainless steel pedals, and an interior LED lighting pack.

Finally, opting for the Black Edition will add 18 inch alloy wheels, a black styling pack comprising of a radiator grille, underbody protection, and air inlet grille in black, exterior mirrors and side skirts in black privacy glass, and a black contrast roof.

Reliability and Safety

The Audi A1 has a five star safety rating from Euro NCAP which puts it on par with other superminis such as the, Ford Fiesta and the SEAT Ibiza, and outperforms other like the Mini Hatchback and the Nissan Micra.

This comes from a really strong set of standard equipment that helps to keep you and your passengers safe. This includes electronic stabilisation control with ABS, EBD, ASR, and EDL, seat belt monitoring, isofix points in the rear and front passenger seats, Audi Pre-sense Front which has pedestrian and cyclist recognition, hill hold assist, lane departure warning, a speed limiter, and Audi Connect Safety and Service.

Every new Audi A1 has a three year manufacturers warranty which has no mileage limit on the first two years but only applies in he third year if your car has done less than 60,000 miles. This lets you relax knowing that should any part of your car happen to have an issue that stems from its manufacturing then it will be covered and repaired by your nearest Audi Approved Dealer, making Audi ownership even easier.


The Audi A1 is a well priced supermini and falls into the same price range as others such as the SEAT Ibiza and the Mini Hatch.

An entry level Technik starts with an on the road retail price of £19,760 with the manual 25 TSFI engine, giving you a large amount of equipment and solid power output. Stepping up to the Sport will cost £21,210 and the S Line models begin at £22,860, not a huge jump in price for the additional equipment that you get with it. The top of the range Black Edition, with all of its additional trim and detailing, will start at £24,655.

Upgrading your engine option, adding accessories, and changing your paint colour will all alter the base cost of your Audi A1 from the listed price.


It's no surprise that the Audi A1 is still as popular as it's ever been. It's the perfect car for those who want to be able to zip around the city centre whilst also being comfortable on longer drives or to feel sturdy on country roads.

It's got many of the features that you'd find on a "big car" in the Audi range and doesn't compromise on the brand's signature style and class. You can see how it fairs against a larger Audi model by reading through our comparison: Audi A1 vs Audi A3. Or see what makes it different to another iconic supermini as we compare it against the MINI Hatch: Audi A1 vs MINI Hatch.

For more information, or to have any further questions answered please don't be afraid to contact our knowledgeable teams at Aberdeen Audi and Dundee Audi.