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2017 Audi A1 Review

By Matt Zimmerman


Updated on


2017 Audi A1

Audi’s hatchback lineup is even quite versatile like its other cars. The hatchbacks are really an important class of cars. Especially the families prefer to get hatchbacks. As they seem to offer better mileage and lower maintenance cost.

But there are some hatchbacks that not just bring up good fuel mileage. Instead, they even offer luxury and performance. Well, we have a number of examples of performing hatchbacks. But in the last few years back we got an example from a luxury car manufacturer.

Well, that is Audi A1. Something that Audi calls a sporting hatchback. But we would term it as a luxury hatchback. In 2007 Audi displayed the Metroproject Quattro at the Tokyo Auto Show. That was a plugin hybrid that could travel up to 60 – 65 miles. Well, as all it had a 1.4 L engine. The Metroproject Quattro was called the A1 Project Quattro in 2008. Well, these cars were three-door hatchbacks.

By the fall of 2008, Audi came up with the 5-door hatchback. It was titled as the A1 Sportback. The car went on display in Paris Motor Show.

After all these displays, the Audi A1 came to life in 2010. It replaced the Audi A2. In a way it even replaced the Audi A50 that was discontinued in 1978.

Well, the Audi A1 got a lot of fame in the UK. In the very next year of its launch, it won the award for the Car of the Year 2011.

The famous actor/ singer Justin Timberlake remained the brand ambassador for Audi A1. Audi marketed the A1 through numerous ways. But specifically, it remained with the smartphone and PlayStation games.

The Audi A1 is priced as low as $19,230. While the finest A1 is available for as low as $31,160.


1.2 – 2.0 L5 & 6 – speed manual

7 – speed automatic

85 – 256 hp118 – 258 lb – ft
0 – 62 MPHTop SpeedBody StyleMPG
5.8s123 mphHatchback27 city/ 33 highway


Hood of 2017 Audi A1

Audi A1 offers various drivetrains. Well, usually you would not find a hatchback with so many mechanical options. The base model is equipped with the 1.2 L TFSI engine. This is one of the most economical models of the A1 series. Whether it is the fuel or the maintenance, every cost is economical on this car. Well, this 1.2 inline-4 offers 85 hp of power revving at 118 lb-ft of torque. This powertrain is mated to the 5-speed manual transmission.

After this decency, you meet the 1.4 L TFSI engine. This a mid-spectrum engine with 120 hp of power and 148 lb-ft of torque. And you get two choices for the transmission. The first is the 6-speed manual. While the second is the 7-speed S-Tronic automatic transmission. Well, we love the manual transmission. As you can sway at your speed while driving a manual car.

The 1.4 inline-4 is even available in two more tunings. First, comes with the 138 hp of power at 184 lb-ft of torque. This is a mechanically optional car. As you can adjust the number of cylinders as per you wish. The maximum would be 4 only. While the second gets over with the massive 182 hp of power with 184 lb-ft of torque.

The former one offers the manual and the automatic transmission. While the latter one has only the 7-speed automatic transmission.

The most powerful drivetrain is available in the “S” version of the A1. It is the S1 that comes with the 2.0 L turbocharged engine. This engine moves with 256 hp of power and 258 lb-ft of torque. And the most amazing this is that it is available only with the 6-speed manual transmission.

The diesel drivetrains have 1.6 and 2.0 L engines.


2017 Audi A1 Exterior

Unlike the common hatchbacks, the Audi A1 has an attractive exterior. But still, it is a hatchback. A1 is available in two body styles. The first one offered is the 3-door hatchback. While the second one is the common 5-door hatchback. Audi calls the 5-door hatchback as the Sportback.

The A1 has a classified exterior design. LEDs, big alloy wheels, and aerodynamic application are available on this car. The front grille is the signature Audi grille. The rear drop has the spoiler on it. And that becomes useful for the high-performing engines.

Well, there are a number of colors available for the exterior. Even the frame and body contrast colors are even available. The sports model features a carbon fiber roof. Along with that, it has some sporty add-ons available on it.

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Interior of 2017 Audi A1

The interior of Audi A1 is not as rich as the other cars from Audi. But it looks luxurious as compared to the other hatchbacks. The interior design begins from the seats. The leather sports seats are standard in A1. Well, an optional Super Sports Seats are also available. The Super Sports Seats enhance the seating experience. And even they keep the driver and the passenger stay away from all pangs.

The carbon fiber has been used for the accent. Well, the Alcantara is even available, depending on your choice. Further, the 3-door hatchback A1 offers space for 4-people. But it certainly congestive like the common 3-door hatches.

While the 5-door Sportsback is spacious. You can easily fit it 4-people in this car. But you would complain about the cargo space in both body styles.

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Features of 2017 Audi A1

The touchscreen infotainment system is optional in this car. You would have to pay an additional $771 for the infotainment system. Well, that is certainly a navigation screen. For the radio and music, there is a separate system available. The sound system is fine. We do not have any complaint about that. And even the optional navigation is also responsive. But you just need to understand the mapping before navigation.

Further, a customizable driver’s cluster is available. And along with that Bluetooth phone connectivity is standard on all the models.

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2017 Audi A1 Safety

Initially, A1 was suffering from some safety issues. The pedestrian protection was weak in this car. Mainly it was because of lack of vision. But Audi has addressed this concern pretty diligently.

The safety score improved drastically from Average to Good. The Audi A1 scored 5-Stars in the safety tests. But still, there is some improvement required. Actually, the improvement is required in the design.

Well, the occupant safety is guaranteed in this car. The airbags, seatbelts and the latches are pretty accurate and respond promptly upon any impact. Well, it is a family car, and it is supposed to have enough safety for the families to ride.

Along with the passive safety, the active safety features are even quite responsive. Well, the A1 has the cruise control, hill-hold assist and the rear parking sensors. And if you need the whole frontal and rear parking system, you would have to acquire it for $372.

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Mini Cooper

It is pretty easy to find a competitor for a standard hatchback. But when the discussion is about a super-hatchback, you need to dig hard to fetch a competitor. Well, luckily we found one. It is the Mini Cooper. The custom revamped Mini Coopers are quite agile. But the standard Coopers had been just a liability. Somehow, their performance could match the Audi A1 a lot.

But still, the Audi A1 is one of the hatchback leaders. Are you planning to save on fuel and maintenance? Then why wait, go and grab one Audi A1.



About Matt Zimmerman

Matt is no stranger to the automotive world, writing about cars since 2008 as a contributor for several huge automotive websites such as Car and Driver, AutoEvolution, Motor1, CarAdvice or MotorTrend. A true fan of everything with wheels, his garage includes a dozen of different cars, including an old BMW M3 and a Tesla Model S. Learn more about GCB's Editorial Process.

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