In-depth reviews

Audi A1 review - engine and gearbox

A1 exhibits all the usual Audi traits, but lacks any real fun factor.

Evo rating
Price
from £14,990
  • Exceptional quality for such a small car and still fun to drive
  • Expensive compared to its rivals

Engine and gearbox

All Audi A1s come as standard with a manual transmission, a five-speeder on the 1.0-litre and TDI and a six-speed item on the 1.4-litre TFSIs and S1. Both gearboxes are light and unobtrusive to use, making fast gear changes easy. Sadly neither are the most satisfying, feeling like there’s more plastic than metal in the linkage.

There is an optional seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox available on all models except the S1. The S tronic is an incredibly impressive gearbox, changes are almost instant and there’s no hint of sloppiness. However, its incredible precision leaves no room for character so can dull the driving experience slightly.

The manual is much nicer to use and makes you feel much more involved with the car, even if every gear change isn’t perfect.

There’s a small drop in economy with that S Tronic transmission in the three-cylinder 1.0 TFSI and diesel, although it doesn't change the 0-62mph time. Emissions do drop a percentage point in the tax payable, which, in this marketplace really counts. Fitted to the higher power 1.4 TFSI model economy and emissions are unchanged, as is the performance.

Most Popular

Litchfield Toyota GR Yaris 2021 review – superstar hatchback picks up expert UK-tuning
Litchfield Toyota GR Yaris – front cornering
Toyota GR Yaris

Litchfield Toyota GR Yaris 2021 review – superstar hatchback picks up expert UK-tuning

Litchfield’s been fiddling with Toyota’s brilliant GR Yaris with predictably fantastic results
31 Jul 2021
Range-topping Honda NSX Type S coming to Pebble Beach
Honda NSX Type S – burnout
Honda NSX

Range-topping Honda NSX Type S coming to Pebble Beach

It’s the end of the line for Honda’s pioneering NSX, but it’s going out with a bang
3 Aug 2021
Car pictures of the week
Bishops Heritage Range Rover – rear tracking
Land Rover

Car pictures of the week

An epic Bishops Heritage Range Rover Restomod stars in this week's gallery
30 Jul 2021