The Audi A2 was well ahead of its time when it launched in 1999, and it paid dearly for its advanced nature, with a short lifespan and disappointing sales.
But the A2, which was capable of getting 78 mpg in some trim levels, appears set for a renaissance. Times have changed, and the demand for a small, ultra-efficient premium car appears to be there, and Audi is investigating the revival of their quirky compact. Autocar is reporting that Audi is investigating the prospect, and has set some very ambitious targets, notably a curb weight of just under 1800lbs. With its small footprint and aluminum construction, a figure like that is theoretically possible (and the original A2 only weighed about 220 lbs more), but with modern conveniences and safety features, Audi’s engineers still have a monumental task ahead of them.
With Audi planning to use aluminum spaceframes across most of its model range, the A2’s development costs could theoretically by absorbed across a large number of models – a crucial factor in a car that was considered to have been too expensive for its time. On the other hand, things are looking far different than they did in 1999, and the A2 may finally be ready for mainstream acceptance.