Audi’s new A1 supermini has gone on UK sale today, priced from £13,145 for a 1.2 TFSI SE trim model to £18,280 for a range-topping 1.4 TFSI auto. That pitches the A1 slightly above the Mini, whose boggo First three-door kicks off at £12,620.
But study the two rival supermini ranges from Audi and BMW more closely and you’ll see they’re quite evenly matched. Most new models tend to come in pricier than ageing opposition and Audi will be hoping to cash in on the interest in the first small Audi since the high-tech A2.
Audi A1: the model range
The A1 will be available in three trim levels: SE, Sport and S line. Basic SE models come with start-stop, 15-inch alloys, six-speaker CD Player with MP3 compatibility, voice control, a 6.5in multimedia screen, cloth seats, air-con, electric front windows and door mirrors, ESP, remote locking and six airbags.
Climb to Sport spec, and you’ll upgrade to 16in alloys, sports suspension (rarely a good idea in our view), Bluetooth phone spec, sports seats, trip computer and various flashes of alloy and piano black trim, front foglights and a polished tailpipe.
Maximum S line A1s add 17in alloys shod with 215/40 R17 rubber, even harder suspension, part-leather upholstery and multi-function steering wheel, black headlining, high-gloss radiator grille, sports bumper, side skirts, rear diffuser and a rear spoiler.
What are the engines on the A1?
At launch, Audi is offering a 1.2 TFSI and 1.4 TFSI petrols with 85bhp or 120bhp, and a solitary 1.6 TDI diesel with 104bhp. The 1.4 petrol can be had with S-tronic seven-speed twin-clutch transmission for £1420.
The order books open today at Audi dealers; first deliveries are due in autumn 2010. Expect to see plenty of A1s in fashionable parts of London and other cities, and we’d wager plenty of buyers will swap out of BMW’s Mini.