Audi A1 variant gets urban off-roader look
Looking for an economical five-door city hatchback but hanker after something a bit more rugged? No need to go the whole SUV route – the A1 Citycarver offers useful extra ground clearance and a chic design full of urban off-roader appeal.
Close cousin to the A1 Sportback, the A1 Citycarver is a five-door hatchback with that model’s sporty lines, broad track and short overhangs. Unlike the Sportback, the Citycarver features Audi’s large, octagonal singleframe grille in a strongly sculpted honeycomb pattern inspired by the ‘Q’ series Audi SUV range. Other distinguishing features include two slots above the grille, underbody protection in stainless steel paint and a protective contrast finish for the wheel arches and sills. Just as significant is an extra 4cm (1.6 inches) of ground clearance, which makes entry and egress easier and gives a higher viewpoint, both of which are valuable in urban driving.
The A1 Citycarver is available with Audi’s 30 TFSI petrol engine, which has three cylinders and a capacity of 1.0 litre. It’s an eager, peppy motor that produces 116 metric horsepower and 200Nm of torque and 0-62mph takes 9.9 seconds. Both a six-speed manual gearbox and a seven-speed automatic are available. All models are front-wheel drive.
Even the base model A1 Citycarver comes with a 10.25” digital instrumentation cluster and smartphone interface. LED headlights and LED rear lights with dynamic rear indicators are also standard. This specification can be augmented with the optional Audi Virtual Cockpit featuring Connect Navigation and the Information Plus package. The optional Audi phone box adds wireless phone charging and connection while Audi’s Comfort and Sound pack adds Bang & Olufsen audio, heated front seats and a more advanced park assist function.
Key safety system is Audi Pre-Sense front, which uses radar to sense potentially hazardous situations such as vehicles or pedestrians ahead of the vehicle, even when visibility is poor. Following a visual and acoustic warning it will initiate a short jolt of the brakes and then, if the driver takes no action, emergency braking. The A1 Citycarver also comes with a lane keeping system, rear parking sensors and hill hold assist as standard.
Verdict: when you think about it, a supple suspension and high ground clearance can be as useful on potholed city streets as it is down a country byway. The A1 Citycarver is a smart looking ‘urban off-roader’ based on a compact, efficient and fun five-door hatch with Audi’s premium brand appeal.
CitycarverHighlights for citycarver include: