The 2020 Audi A1 Sportback collects the best in terms of technology, comfort, road dynamics, and engineering solutions,, showing a maturity increase compared to the previous generation, getting closer and closer to the bigger sister A3.
The Audi A1 renews itself after almost nine years from its debut, showing a new, more angular design, growing in size and becoming a more mature car from all points of view. Everything new then, including the platform that now takes the name of MQB A0 and characterizes all the most compact models of the Volkswagen Group, with lowered or slightly raised body like the new Volkswagen T-Cross. Great revolutions also in the 3 or 4 cylinder engine sector, which all become petrol-driven, the diesel is abandoned as was to be expected and the new Audi nomenclature is introduced, with the numerical part indicating the power range within which the engine will be placed.
2020 Audi A1 Sportback Exterior & Interior
Sharp, modern lines for the exterior, enhanced by the S-Line Edition One package. The new stylistic course of Audi introduces new lines, more angular and elaborate than in the past with really marked ribs on the whole bodywork, making the group mastery in knowing how to work sheet metal panels according to particular technologies. The dimensions change above all: the small A1 now exceeds 4 meters, 4 meters, and 05for accuracy, for a width of 1 meter and 76 and a wheelbase of 2 meters and 56 cm. Audi also follows the market trend of abandoning the 3-door bodywork, in fact, only the 5-door Sportback version will be available, more popular with customers and more versatile. In the front, there are new Full-Led optical groups, optional on request, with a pierced light signature, which also incorporates progressive arrows.
The gaze immediately focuses on the large central grille, grown in size, single frame, and three-dimensional design, supported by two air intakes, only aesthetically placed at the sides, which give a truly sporty look. Particularly also the reference to competitions and to the past, we talk about the legendary Audi Quattro with the 3 grooves placed above the grille.
The version we tested was the S-line Edition One, reserved for the launch of the car, which presents the S-line aesthetic package, embellished with Audi logos and the abbreviation made in black as well as the rear badge, black contrasting roof, dedicated 18 “wheels in white color with red sports pizzas and the white Audi logo on the side. Also in the back, the shape of the 2020 Audi A1 Sportback is twisted, with a squarer and less rounded line, with clear cuts in the bodywork and an elaborate bumper for the S-Line. Unfortunately, the double exposed exhaust will be reserved only for the 40 TFSI version, powered by the 2.0 turbo 2.0 4-cylinder turbo.
Even inside it is all new, there is a decidedly premium air and it is basically the triumph of digital. However, there is a great revolution compared to the past, with a three-dimensional dashboard tilted towards the driver, a driving position more inserted in the passenger compartment and placed lower down, with more space in all directions.
The seats are comfortable, even the sports seats, with larger side panels to better contain the occupants’ bodies, never seem too intrusive. The materials are of excellent quality, as one might expect, especially on those controls where “the hands come” more often. A master in the discipline, Audi offers even the smallest of its production that typical premium car feedback, which is perceived by touching some controls, the climate rotors or vents, the wheel for the volume and the steering wheel buttons. It may be irrelevant for many, but the build quality perfectly matches what we can find on high-end models. However, we are slightly disappointed by the door panel and by the plastics used for the lower parts of the passenger compartment, a little too rough and of low quality, clearly departing from the care used for example for the dashboard.
Even in the back, you can feel comfortable, better than in the past thanks to 9 centimeters more than pitch, with more space for the legs and the head. The third central passenger is no longer so sacrificed, even if the tunnel for future versions with all-wheel drive, steals space from the feet. However, the rear air vents are not present, not so much a lack for a car of this segment as for a car of this caliber.
The trunk is also growing slightly, reaching 335 liters (70 more than the previous A1) in normal conditions or going up to 1090 liters by pulling down the rear seats.
2020 Audi A1 Sportback Equipment
The new 10.1-inch MMI Plus Infotainment system stands out immediately, optional in this case, but in any case an 8-inch multimedia system is always found full touch, in addition to the 10.25-inch digital instrumentation in front of the steering wheel, standard on all versions, but the Virtual Cockpit, with more features and graphics, is an option from around $300. A separate service would then be needed to talk in depth about the infinite functions of the multimedia system which, in addition to the now discounted Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, is able to offer 360-degree support by interfacing with the apps of our smartphone. The Audi Connect system is equipped with a 4g sim card to communicate with the network and to show you various useful information, from news to news, to weather, to inform me about incoming emails, to book a hotel, parking lots and much more. Well done then the voice commands of the system, probably not as advanced as those present on the Mercedes MBUX system, but perform their job perfectly, avoiding us to look away from the road to search through our contacts or on the navigator, this last option for $550.
It takes just a few meters to understand that the 2020 Audi A1 Sportback is no longer a mere entry-level Ingolstadt b-segment, but transmits those typical perceptions of upper-segment cars: soundproofing, isolation from road vibrations and absorption of holes are significantly higher than the direct competitors. It must be said that the MQB A0 modular platform on which the new Audi A1 is built, which is shared with Polo and Ibiza, ensures considerable torsional rigidity and superior driving pleasure compared to the past.
On this S-Line Edition One version, driving precision is also ensured by the electronically controlled sports suspension of the Dynamic package, which vary the rigidity according to the driving modes selected with the Drive Select: in comfort they can digest even the most pronounced holes, despite the lowered shoulder of the 18 ″ alloy wheels, while in dynamic they ensure a discreet driving precision and low roll. Even the progressive steering appeared level, precise and with good feedback, able to change its solidity according to the driving mode, without being excessively sensitive to high speeds.
Braking also seemed to live up to expectations, with a 15 ″ increased braking system at the front incorporated in the Dynamic package. The pedal has good sensitivity and the brakes, for road use, can easily support higher performance than our 30 TFSI of 116 hp. Great technology, as mentioned above, which is found above all in active safety systems: the distance radar helps us to break in the event a pedestrian arrives or in case the car in front of us suddenly stops. The 2020 Audi A1 Sportback then brakes and accelerates by itself even on the motorway, thanks to the Adaptive Cruise control, and manages to maintain the road thanks to the radar that corrects the angle of the steering wheel, monitors the blind spot and activates or deactivates the high beam headlights at second of the cars in front of us. It is also equipped with parking sensors and, if necessary, also a rearview camera. There is also the parking assistant who undertakes the maneuver for us.
The 30 TFSI version is powered by the small but crisp 1.0 3-cylinder turbo that I have already had the pleasure of testing in the past on a Golf MK 7.5, but which in this version has been revised to deliver 116 hp and 200 nm of torque already at 2000 laps. In fact, it enjoys a decent performance, with a 0-100 of 9.4 seconds and a maximum speed of 203 km / h. The small turbine ensures immediate promptness to the pedal pressure, combined with the typical liveliness of a 3-cylinder engine, so we find a truly reduced turbo lag, with a unit capable of pushing well up to over 4500 rpm. The noise inside the passenger compartment is almost nil, only over 4000 rpm you start to feel the slight swirl of the small engine, while at a minimum the vibrations of the 3 cylinders are contained. However, in dynamic mode, the stereo system amplifies the engine tones, reproducing a slight hiss from the speakers in line with the engine revs. Not the best systems at this juncture, in fact, some competitors have managed to replicate the sound of the engine in a more natural and “digestible” way. As for the gearbox, this version is equipped with the double 7-speed S-Tronic clutch, a revised version of the famous DSG, by now a certainty among the Audi models, which ensures fast and almost imperceptible changes. I found it slightly jerky only in some restarts, especially in cold weather or in the classic slowdowns from first and second that can be encountered in the city. In all the other situations it proved to be a valid ally for traveling, also following a more dynamic driving style.
2020 Audi A1 Sportback Fuel Economy & Pricing
Probably, given the extreme compactness of the engine, some could expect much lower consumption or in line with the 5.7 liters / 100km declared by the house, so about 18 km per liter. In reality, taking advantage of the comfort mode and being slightly careful with the pedal, we were able to stabilize our average consumption on about 14 km per liter, rising to over 18 km / l only in the case of extra-urban roads at an average speed of 80 / 90 km / h.
A positive figure, however, which, however, risks falling steeply if we were to adopt a more lively and sporty driving style. I was rather surprised by the values recorded in consumption, considering that the same unit 1.0 3 cylinders on the Golf(car heavier than 60-70 kg), combined however with a 6-speed manual gearbox, had recorded an average consumption of about 16 km per liter in urban and over 22 km / l in extra-urban areas. Looking at the price lists, the starting price for the A1 range is € 21,750 for the 25 TFSI of 95 hp. We go up to $25658 for the 30 TFSI we test, going to the $28395 of the 35 TFSI with 150 hp and the $36891 for the 40 TFSI with 200 HP top of the range. Beyond the engine that you could choose, it is advisable to remain cautious with the configurator and with the selectable options, because the price of the car could grow considerably depending on the desired configuration.