Used test: Audi A1 Sportback vs Mini 5dr

The Audi A1 and the Mini 5dr both offer a luxury feel in a small car package, but which one makes the most sense when bought used? We have the answer.....

New Audi A1 vs new Mini 5dr

What will they cost? 

New, it’s the Mini that would have cost you more, but here at two years old it’s the cheaper car by quite a substantial margin - £2500, in fact. This, of course, looks good on paper, as it’s cheaper to buy, but it also hints at its heavier depreciation. If this were to carry on over the next two or three years of ownership it would obviously add a large amount to the overall total it would cost to run, whereas the A1, with its solid residual values, should cost you less in this area. 

Audi A1 back seats

The Mini is also slightly thirstier, according to the official average WLTP economy figures, at 47.9mpg against the A1’s 48.7mpg, and pricier to service. Both should cost the same to insure and to tax. 

You get more kit for your cash in the Mini, though. As tested, it gets extras such as 17in wheels, climate control and heated seats. The A1 comes with no such trinkets; in fact, it’s pretty sparse.

Mini 5dr rear seats

If you’re comparing safety kit, however, it’s the Mini that looks parsimonious. While the A1 gets automatic emergency braking and lane-keeping assistance as standard, you’d have had to spend £800 on the Driving Assistant Pack to get these safety aids on the Mini when it was new, and it’s likely that not all will have been specified with this option. 

The Mini isn’t rated very highly by Euro NCAP, either, managing just four stars out of five, whereas the A1 managed top marks - five out of five. 

In our most recent reliability survey, the Mini finished in a mid-table position in the small car class, while the previous version of the A1 (this latest one didn’t feature in the survey) came in 20th out of 25 cars. Audi as a brand also came in a slightly disappointing 20th place out of 31 manufacturers in the same survey, while Mini came in a more commendable eighth place. 

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