Audi is pushing ahead with plans for a second-generation A2, due in 2014. However, the size and shape have evolved significantly since the A2 concept starred at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show – and our illustrations reveal how the finished car is likely to look.
Last year’s A2 concept was designed to be a premium city car boasting a big interior package but a small footprint on the road. Customer clinics revealed a desire for more practicality, though, and the arrival of the VW Group’s MQB platform has allowed Audi to make the A2 longer, taller and offer a similar footprint to the A3’s. That means the car will go head-to-head with the Mercedes B-Class and BMW 1 Series GT.
The interior package will be key and should provide lots of space for five adults, with generous head and legroom, a substantial boot and clever storage solutions. An inside source said: “In the segment between the A1 and A3, it’s certainly a good idea to have a car with more room which doesn’t need much of a parking area and can carry four or five with plenty of cabin space. We can do a lot with that car concept.”
Basing the A2 on the MQB platform opens up a host of engine options for Audi. The original idea was to offer the car only with electric and plug-in hybrid engines, but now it can use the full suite of powertrain options which includes 1.4 and 1.8 TFSI turbo petrols ranging from 120bhp to 178bhp. Diesel options will include a 148bhp 2.0 TDI and a 1.6 TDI producing less than 100g/km of CO2.
The initial plan to electrify the A2 won’t be forgotten, though. Audi CEO Rupert Stadler has already confirmed a plug-in hybrid A3, which will arrive in 2014. A fleet of A3 e-tron test cars has also been built, giving a 31-mile electric-only range from a combination of a 208bhp 1.4 TFSI engine and a 27bhp motor. The A2 and A3 are set to use a development of this system.
It’s only right that the new A2 should be so technically advanced. The 2000 original had an all-aluminium chassis and a radical aero package, weighed 895kg and returned up to 95mpg. But the use of materials never before seen in the sector meant it was pricey, and it proved a slow seller.
Audi won’t make the same mistake again this time. The use of the versatile MQB platform to underpin the new A2 will enable the company to keep costs down.