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Audi introducing 5-door A1 Sportback; fuel consumption as low as 62 mpg US for diesel versions

Audi A1 Sportback. Click to enlarge.

The new Audi A1 Sportback, which will go on-sale in 2012, is a five-door version of the compact 3-door A1. Buyers in Europe will be able to choose between three TFSI gasoline and three TDI diesel four-cylinder direct-injection engines producing between 63 kW (86 hp) and 136 kW (185 hp). Audi pairs some engines with the seven-speed S tronic transmission.

All the engines follow the downsizing principle of substituting forced induction for displacement. All versions except the 1.6 TDI with S tronic and the most powerful gasoline engine are equipped with a start-stop system.

The base engine, the 1.2 TFSI, produces 63 kW (86 hp), with fuel consumption of 5.1 liters per 100 km (46.1 mpg US). The two 1.4-liter TFSI engines produce 90 kW (122 hp) and 136 kW (185 hp). The top-of-the-line gasoline engine is supercharged and turbocharged, resulting in 250 N·m (184.4 lb-ft) of torque, a zero-to-100 km/h (62 mph) time of 7.0 seconds and a top speed of 227 km/h (141 mph).

Three TDI units round out the lineup. The 1.6-liter engine is available in two different versions, with 66 kW (90 hp) and 77 kW (105 hp). When paired with a manual transmission, both versions consume 3.8 liters of fuel per 100 km (61.9 US mpg) on average, which corresponds to 99 grams of CO2/km (159.3 g/mile). The 105 kW (143 hp) 2.0 TDI to follow later accelerates the A1 Sportback to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 8.5 seconds, yet its average fuel consumption is 4.1 liters of fuel per 100 km (57.4 US mpg).

Audi offers the seven-speed S tronic as an option with the 1.4 TFSI with 90 kW (122 hp) and 1.6 TDI with 66 kW (90 hp); it comes standard with the top TFSI model with 136 kW (185 hp).

The driver can let the seven-speed S tronic, which also includes a hill hold assist, shift automatically or control it manually. Shift paddles on the steering wheel are available as an option. The manual transmissions with a five-speed or six-speed gearbox depending on the engine are available.

The Audi A1 Sportback is 3.95 meters (12.96 ft) long and has a wheelbase of 2.47 meters (8.10 ft), just like the three-door model. It is six millimeters (0.24 in) wider and taller than the three-door model, however, at 1.75 meters (5.74 ft) and 1.42 meters (4.66 ft), respectively. Its aerodynamics have been fine-tuned so that the base version has a coefficient of drag of 0.32.

High- and ultra high-strength steels comprise roughly two-thirds of the A1 Sportback’s body. The strongest of these are the hot-shaped steels, which are used primarily in the occupant cell. A large temperature increase during the shaping process lends them their extremely high tensile strength. Hot-shaped steels make thinner walls and thus a lower weight possible.

The lightweight body lays the groundwork for the low gross weight—the A1 Sportback 1.2 TFSI weighs 1,065 kilograms (2,347.92 lb). The body is also very rigid and impact-resistant yet quiet on the road.



As low as 62 mpg and 99 g CO2/Km. Where does this leave CAFE 2025?


The Seat 1.2 diesel does 67 mpg (US gallons, EU combined cycle) and 92 g CO2/km. Max speed 108 mph. Where does this leave CAFE 2025?


Oops, a little more Googling reveals:

Only 62 mpg and 99 g CO2/km?

Try 74 mpg and 85 g CO2/km.

(US gallons, EU combined cycle)

Kia Rio 1.1 CRDi Ecodynamic. But only if a 98mph top speed is acceptable to you.

Where does this leave CAFE 2025?


"The lightweight body lays the groundwork for the low gross weight—the A1 Sportback 1.2 TFSI weighs 1,065 kilograms (2,347.92 lb)."

The Hyundai Veloster(35 cu. ft storage, rear seat down) is only ~2550 lb.

Lighter auto weights without using carbon fiber yet.

Brian Petersen

For those commenting about CAFE 2025, keep in mind that the fuel consumption figures quoted in this article relate to the European test procedure, which appears to be even more out of whack with reality than the uncorrected EPA test (which is what is being used for the North American CAFE requirements). Still, something roughly like this is about what would be required for *average* in 2025. It's worth noting that only the diesel versions of this car have such low consumption figures.

The biggest problem will be convincing American drivers that something like this is all they really need. 54.5 mpg CAFE in a big square SUV is not going to happen regardless of drivetrain.


Yes BP...heavy bricks and/or boats on wheels will hardly get 55+ mpg unless very efficient hydridization is used. Manufacturers will have to learn how to make much lither vehicles. The technology exist to replace steel with aluminium and/or composites and much smaller ICE but resistance to change is still very present.


The technology exists to build high $$ electric cars hybrid SUVs, superlight Ti, Mg, Al, carbon paper cars and even fragile gossamer short lived cars, but resistance to fiscal irresponsibility is still very present.

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