Audi press on with quattro for A1

Speaking with a motortrade insider about the benefits of four-wheel-drive in winter weather, like we have experienced in this country with a vengeance over the last couple of months.

While Audi has underlined its commitment to four-wheel-drive with the development of the Audi A1 quattro, he, and I, were puzzled that BMW were still shunning four-wheel-drive for their saloons and hatchbacks in the UK.


A prototype of the forthcoming Audi A1 quattro undergoes snowy trials

One Audi dealership in Scotland reports that quattro models now represent more than half of its total new car sales. Yet, BMW still do not import xDrive saloons or Tourings into the UK. If you want a four-wheel-drive BMW here, you will have to look at their X3, X5 and the forthcoming X1.

I have long been a fan of four-wheel-drive saloons and hatchbacks. In the past seven years I have had a saloon, cabriolet and now a hatchback with all-wheel-drive.

I like the handling during the summer, when a well sorted four-wheel-drive car exhibits the same sort of handling balance as a rear-wheel-drive car, but with even greater security. Come the winter, four-wheel-drive has obvious advantages.

Apart from when the snow is simply too deep to negotiate, I have only ever become stuck once with my four-wheel-drive cars. Ironically that was after the thaw had set in and deep slush brought the car to a halt.

After the severest weather in the UK for more than 100 years, expect even more people to be seeking out four-wheel-drive for their next family car.
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