Welcome to summer 2021. Not exactly balmy, is it? With Caterham Sevens and Lotus Elises still tucked up warm and snug in their garages, we need something more predictable and watertight for our B-road antics in the coming months.
With a bespoke quattro four-wheel drive system, the S1 can put down its 228bhp effectively whatever the weather. And with 272lb ft of torque, it can hit 62mph in less than 6.0sec.
There’s no sporting variant of the current second-generation A1, and it’s very rare for cars of this size to be equipped with such a complete four-wheel drive system. This fact, partnered with its high original launch price, means the S1 only looks all the more appealing today.
We’ve got our eye on this five-door S1 Sportback quattro in Competition trim and decked out in striking Misano Red. While the car’s infotainment system is now showing signs of its age, the interior quality is high and the original owner’s generosity with the options list means there’s cruise control, parking sensors and high-beam assistance. Plus you get the standard LED headlights, Bluetooth and climate control to play with.
This 2017-reg example has 46,000 miles on the clock, which is certainly nothing to worry about, especially as it comes with a full service history and has recently passed an MOT test.
If you want supermini levels of urban manoeuvrability combined with the open-space flamboyance of a full-sized hot hatchback, not to mention an upmarket interior and badge, then the S1 is really quite a compelling option.