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Audi's A1 uncovered

2010-02-10 10:44
From concept, to street art, to reality, Audi's A1 is fast taking shape. The first official images of the all-new Mini rival have been released ahead of its Geneva Motor Show debut.

The littlest Audi looks like the rest of the Ingolstadt gang, and the manufacturer has gone to great pains stressing this is a true, bona fide Audi.

In production form, A1 remains true to the Metroproject Quattro concept shown at the 2007 Tokyo Motor Show and the study of the A1 Sportback seen at the Paris show in 2008.

The car's design takes on a coupe-like profile, while large wheel arches convey a definite sense of presence.

Even the interior is similar to that seen on the concepts and, as appears to be the current car fashion, customisation of the A1 is big. The list of options should make for exhausting reading, including as it does a contrasting roof arch, LED interior lighting and seats covered in "expressive" colours.

Other features include the latest infotainment offerings with connection to mobile phones, portable music media, and a Bose audio system with LED fibreoptic technology. This model is, after all, expected to appeal to the young, trendy and fabulous set… Just take a look at the four round air nozzles said to resemble the turbines of a jet.

Young and very hot...

According to Audi, this car should be fun to drive thanks to its "agile chassis, sporty setup and optimised weight distribution". Sharing a platform with family members Volkwagen Polo and Seat Ibiza, A1 measures just 3.95 metres. Its wheelbase is 2.47 metres long.

For the car's European unveiling at Geneva, a choice of two TDI and two TFSI engines are available, with output ranging from 63 kW to 90 kW. A six-speed manual gearbox is standard on petrol derivatives, while the turbodiesels will send power to the front wheels via a five-speed gearbox. Audi's seven-speed dual-clutch S tronic transmission is optional.

To lessen the load on the environment, all cars are equipped with energy recuperation and stop-start systems for the engines.

The line-up for the South African market will become clearer closer to A1's local introduction early in 2011.


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