Audi’s little A1 is getting a bit bigger in 2012 with the release of the five-door 2012 A1 Sportback. Introduced to the world at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show, the 2012 A1 Sportback adds two doors to the three-door A1 that was released in 2010. The A1 Sportback 2012 has the same overall length and wheelbase as the non-Sportback, but both width and height are increased by six mm, resulting in more head room and shoulder room.
The 2012 A1 Sportback comes standard with four seats, though a fifth one is available as an option. Unlike the other Audi Sportbacks, A5 and A7, the elongated 2012 A1 Sportback looks almost exactly like the car on which it’s based. Like the regular A1—and the VW Polo, ŠkodaFabia, and SEAT Ibiza, with which it shares its platform—the 2012 A1 Sportback is one of the most agile, capable offerings in its class.
The 2012 A1 Sportback weighs just 50 pounds or so more than the three-door, so we don’t anticipate a discernible difference in the dynamics of the two.Audi says the 2012 Audi A1 Sportback is very rigid yet quiet on the road, with no vibrations or intrusive noise.The 2012 A1 Sportback is also marginally taller and wider by 0.2 inches, improving head and shoulder room for the rear occupants which, claims Audi, can now number three.
The 2012 A1 Sportback exterior sees wheel sizes ranging from 15″ to 18″ depending on trim or options, integrated rear spoiler, LED daytime running lights and tail lights and optional xenon headlamps.The 2012 A1 Sportback luggage compartment, meanwhile, has a capacity of 270 litres with the rear seats in the upright position, though that increases to 920 litres with the seats folded down. The 2012 A1 Sportback engine lineup is identical: 1.2- and 1.4-liter gasoline engines with up to 185 hp and 1.6- and 2.0-liter diesels offering up to 143 hp. In 140-hp trim, the turbocharged 1.4-liter gas engine will offer cylinder deactivation, running on just two cylinders under low load. A manual transmission comes standard on all 2012 A1 Sportback models except the top TFSI version, which gets a 7-speed S-Tronic transmission. The S-Tronic is available as an option on the other 2012 A1 Sportback models, and steering wheel paddle shifters can also be added as extras.
Audi has announced six 4-cylinder engines for the 2012 A1 Sportback German market, with three gasoline and three diesel engines.The A1 Sportback 2012 Germany include a 1.2-litre TFSI engine, a 1.4-litre TFSI, and a supercharged and turbocharged 1.4-litre TFSI, as well as two 1.6-litre diesels, and a 2.0-litre diesel that will be added later. The smaller 2012 A1 Sportback diesel engines consume 3.8 L/100 km of fuel according to Audi.
Competitors 2012 A1 Sportback
The 2012 A1 Sportback becomes available in the UK later this month, although customers won’t take delivery until spring 2012. The 2012 Audi A1 Sportback price commands a premium of €850, around $1000, over the regular A1. That’s not too much, considering the added flexibility and convenience. There isn’t much competition for the 2012 A1 Sportback, the Citroën DS3 is only available as a three-door, and the Mini only comes with five doors if you opt for the ungainly Countryman. We think the 2012 A1 Sportback will do well in Europe—and we wish Audi would decide to offer it here as well.
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