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The argument against the A1's different coloured pillars.

By Rigval on 01 Mar 2010

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So we now have heard that Audi is about to enter the premium small car market with the Audi A1. The current market leaders of this market segment are the BMW Mini, the Fiat 500 and to some extent the Alfa Mito. These cars allow car manufacturers to charge a whole lot more for the same small package and of course, Audi being the premium marque in the VW-Audi stable is their contender. But after scrutinizing the pictures it is my opinion that Audi is trying too hard with those flowing A to C pillar 'different colour from the body' scheme. It isn't a design cue or anything like that. It's just colour over sheet metal. Imagine the SMART car with its interchangeable panels. Innovative, but the main highlight about that car, or even the Mini, or even any Fiat 500 is the timeless classic design of these cars, which Audi doesn't have. One look at any of the cars mentioned and you can recognize it. The Audi A1 on the other hand looks like any small hatch with an Audi nose stuck to it and those different coloured pillars. The only plus point are those funky looking LED lights, which are really funky.

Attached Image: Mitsubishi_Colt2.jpg

To prove a point, we now have here is the Mitsubishi A1 (a Colt badly photoshopped by yours truly). Stick an Audi grill, paint the pillars, put on aftermarket LED strips (the one like the A4 but not as chic as the A1) and you have something that looks somewhat like the A1. If you consume a couple of Flaming Lamborghini's and then squint a little that is.

Attached Image: blogentry_60387_1266161639_thumb.jpg

Okay, it may look exactly like the A1 pictured above, but what I think I've stumbled upon here is a new trend. The supposedly trendy (Ah Beng) like people who like to trick up their cars will now follow the A1's flowing different coloured pillars. And that's about it. The point is, flowing different coloured pillars is just a fad, that will be followed by people till they're bored of it. And then its back to the usual normal coloured A to C pillars for all. But I dig those funky LEDs anyway. This is the actual selling point of the A1 regardless what Audi tells us.

Attached Image - Fiat 500
Attached Image - Mini One
Attached Image - Alfa Mito

Audi, Audi A1, BMW Mini, Fiat 500 and 2 more...

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Written by Rigval
Born in 1972. Married with a kid. Loves B-road drives and have driven cars from the 1950s to date.

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Ragingbull Feb 22 2010 02:52 PM
The pillar's give the car it's fun and personalised character. The same way MINI has it's impressive collection of design options for the roof and the mirrors just to name two. Without the pillars, the car will just be perceived as another clinical German automobile and will not be going head to head with the MINI any longer. With the running LED's you, like many others, have come to realise that those headlamps really sell the car. But it gets way better when you're seated inside.

The MINI was quirky inside but the much blistered and exaggerated style of its interior isn't everyones cup of tea. It surely wasn't mine. About classic lines though, the 500 and the MINI are surely a good homage to the original design but the Alfa Mito has lines no one could regard as anything near classic - same with the A1. Don't think they were aiming a classic look but more towards the cool, cutting edge technological look that seems to be the rave for some time now.

Either way, can't wait for the A1 to get in. Curious to see if they nailed the handling on this baby. Pretty sure it'll sell well. All those daddies that bought themselves the R8 would be buying this for either their wife, child or just a city run around.
Rigval Mar 02 2010 08:20 AM
I still think that the pillar thingy is a fad as I can foresee that Audi tuners or some people may just paint the pillars the same colour as the body. If its just paint, and not a real design cue, then it means that they're trying too hard.

Audis are fantastic places to be in.As for whether Audi have nailed the handling on this, I have to say it could be typical Audi...... they can be a little clinical or too polished most of the time. Unless its a quattro with a stonking 4.2 v8 or a supercharged v6.
Ragingbull Mar 02 2010 04:21 PM
My worry is that like in the S3, the handling wasn't as direct as most people would have expected it to be.

I hope they steer clear of that...
Rigval Mar 03 2010 10:35 AM
Exactly my point. Audis tend to be a little clinical. They need to inject some character into their cars. They do. But in their v8 and v6 supercharged models. Their 4pots are efficiency models. but they are too neat and clean. I'd like what people would say " a rouge in a suit".
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