As much as I like looking at them and thinking about how good it would be to drive them, I wouldn’t necessarily like to own one. It just wouldn’t be practical.
Instead the cars I really admire are the three-door hatchbacks of this worlds, cars which are fit for meeting my needs and that are maybe not a million miles away from me being able to afford them.
One such car that fits this bill perfectly is the Audi A1 and I’ve been following news about it closely. When you look at in pictures, it’s hard to get an understanding of its size and it initially struck me as being only slightly smaller than an Audi A3 or a BMW 1-series.
I was even disappointed to think that Audi may have missed a trick in making a real premium alternative to a Mini. But I needn’t have worried, because when I saw the Metroproject Quattro for the first time at Goodwood I was very impressed.
To me, size and style-wise it’s like a cross between a Fiat 500 and a three-door Ford Fiesta; both good starting points in car design. The proportions looked just right and the styling was bold, especially with the bumpers, grille and the typically stylish Audi interior.
The engine range is also set to be appealing, too. The VW Group have some excellent powerplants at present, none more so than the 1.4-litre TSI. I’m sure this will compliment the A1 well and the car will be quick as well as desirable. There’s also talk of an S1 model, which would go head to head with the Mini JCW. That’s an Autocar group test I’d be very interested to read.
There is a point to my Audi A1 praise. This could be all the car someone like me could ever really need. With kids to worry about or a house to furnish with furniture from Ikea, this just leaves me only really caring about something that looks nice and is practical for my motorway and town driving and being able to fit a cricket bag in the boot. As much as I admire the Mini, its styling is hardly modern and revolutionary anymore.
Audi has pretty much nailed all the new markets it has tried its hand in in recent years, best highlighted by the R8. There’s certainly room for a bit of healthy Audi/Mini competition. I’m sure the Audi A1 won’t disappoint.