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Audi A1 Sportback 1.4 TFSI 2016 review

EXPERT RATING
6.8
Peter Anderson road tests and reviews the Audi A1 Sportback 1.4 TFSI with specs, fuel consumption and verdict.

The A1 Sportback is one of those solid performers that is probably mistaken for its bigger brother, in this case the A3. With the recent of addition of the rear doors and a base model 1.0-litre, the 1.4 is now the middle child in the A1 line-up.

It is, however, probably the best of the lot with its efficient turbo, Mini-baiting pricing and finely judged specs to lift it above the rest of the shopping-trolley hatchback pack.

Audi A1 2016: Sportback 1.4 TFSI Sport
Safety rating
Engine Type1.4L turbo
Fuel TypePremium Unleaded Petrol
Fuel Efficiency5.1L/100km
Seating5 seats
Price from$21,888

Does it represent good value for the price? What features does it come with?   6/10

The 1.4 TFSI Sportback starts at $29,900 for the six-speed manual, with a mere $200 more landing you in the Sport seven-speed dual clutch. As if you wouldn’t unless you’re a dead-keen self-shifter.

The extra $2400 over the entry-level three-cylinder turbo buys you 16-inch wheels, an-eight speaker stereo with Bluetooth and special Audi cable phone connection, remote central locking, cruise control, selectable driving modes, floor mats, gear shift paddles, auto headlights and wipers, colour screen in the dash, upgraded cloth-and-fake-leather trim, leather steering wheel, power windows and mirrors and tyre pressures sensors.

Great fun can be had watching the people in the car behind you trying to work out why “that A3 looks so small.”

Our car had the premium paint with contrasting black roof ($1690), the $1990 Style package which adds Xenon headlights, LED daytime running lights and very cool 17-inch wheels with wider tyres (215mm). There was also the $2490 Technik package which boosts the speaker count to ten speakers and adds sat-nav, bringing the price to a somewhat sobering $36,270.

Audi’s MMI is mounted on the dash rather than the console owing to a lack of space (and mechanical handbrake). Like the Q3 it’s not in the best spot, but it does the job with a rotary dial, four context buttons that map to on-screen options and shortcut buttons for major functions.

Well-weighted steering and grip from the 215 tyres making corner-carving plenty of fun

All this is displayed and fold-down screen that sits in the middle of the dash. It’s probably a bit small for anything other than 20-20 vision but does the job, with a good sat-nav that is only let down by slightly jagged graphics.

Is there anything interesting about its design?   7/10

The A1 does look rather like the A3 – we noticed a lot of double-takes from passing punters and great fun can be had watching the people in the car behind you trying to work out why “that A3 looks so small.”

If you whipped the badges off, it would still be instantly recognisable as hailing from Ingolstadt – big grille, cool lighting and that crease down the side all conspire to make you feel that everyone knows you’ve spent a bit extra on your city car.

Inside the Sport has shapely front seats with fake leather inserts (that get really hot in the sun), leather steering wheel and a dash that takes its cues from the new A3 and TT with the circular air-con vents.

The rear bench is quite upright, with the squab up off the floor meaning that a six-footer can get in without grazing their knees on the driver’s seat (providing another six-footer is in front and doesn’t drive straight-armed like Stirling Moss).

Our test car’s alloys worked well with the dark colour and black roof.

What safety equipment is fitted? What safety rating?   6/10

The A1’s five ANCAP stars come courtesy of six airbags, ABS, brake assist, traction and stability controls.

Warranty & Safety Rating

Basic Warranty

3 years / unlimited km warranty

ANCAP Safety Rating

ANCAP logo

Verdict

The 1.4 is definitely the sweet spot of the new A1 range – not much more expensive than the base model, it comes with a bit of extra mumbo and a more casual demeanour. Of course, ours was loaded up a bit, but you could go without a a pack and nip and tuck a few costs to keep it under $35,000 and for that you’ll have one the best small cars on the road.

Is the A1 the perfect city hatch? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Click here for more 2016 Audi A1 Sportback 1.4 TFSI Sport price and spec info

Pricing Guides

$22,880
Based on 21 cars listed for sale in the last 6 months
Lowest Price
$18,800
Highest Price
$25,800

Range and Specs

VehicleSpecsPrice*
Sportback 1.0 TFSI 1.0L, PULP, 7 SP AUTO $18,800 – 25,550 2016 Audi A1 2016 Sportback 1.0 TFSI Pricing and Specs
Sportback 1.4 TFSI Sport 1.4L, PULP, 6 SP MAN $21,888 – 25,800 2016 Audi A1 2016 Sportback 1.4 TFSI Sport Pricing and Specs
Sportback 1.8 TFSI S Line 1.8L, PULP, 7 SP AUTO $26,180 – 32,340 2016 Audi A1 2016 Sportback 1.8 TFSI S Line Pricing and Specs
EXPERT RATING
6.8
Price and features6
Design7
Engine & trans8
Safety6
Driving7
Peter Anderson
Contributing journalist

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