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Audi’s compact Q1 crossover isn’t expected to arrive until late 2012Enlarge Photo
Rising fuel prices are causing buyers of large SUVs to downsize to smaller and more fuel efficient vehicles, but many don’t want to give up some of the unique characteristics of their SUVs – namely, the taller ride height and line of sight. Carmakers are predicting strong growth in the compact SUV segment and are racing to develop a new generation of tiny soft-roaders. Audi’s parent company, Volkswagen, is expected to launch a new SUV version of its next-generation Polo and BMW is currently testing prototypes for its new X1.
The new Q1 is expected to be based on Audi’s upcoming A1 minicar, which itself will be based on a modified Polo platform. The car will measure approximately 3.95m in length and will feature a coupe-styled body. Both two and four-door versions are expected to be released.
Power will come from a 1.4L TFSI four-cylinder engine producing 125hp (93kW) or a TSI unit with 150hp (112kW). Diesel fans will be able to pick from a 1.2L TDI with 80hp (60kW) or a 1.6L TDI with 120hp (90kW).