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 |  Nov 18 2009, 11:45 AM

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Audi’s upcoming A1 small car is set to arrive in Europe in 2010, but unlike the rest of the Audi lineup, the car won’t be offered with the German automaker’s impressive quattro all-wheel drive system. Instead the car will be front-drive only – even the high-performance S1 and RS1 (hypothetical at this point) will stay front-drive.

The decision does make sense, as the AWD setup is heavy, which automatically makes for a less fuel-efficient package. Fuel economy is also harmed by the necessity to use a larger engine or add more horsepower in order to have an AWD car keep up with front or rear drive competitors.

According to a report in German auto-pub AutoBild, the A1 will debut in coupe form at the Geneva Auto Show this coming march and go on sale in Europe later that year. An S1 model will follow, as well an A1 Sportback and A1 Cabrio.

Little is known about the car’s powerplant but the performance-oriented S1 is expected to be powered by a turbocharged 1.4-liter, four-cylinder engine with a 7-seed s-tronic tranmission. It will make 180-hp and be able to hit 62 mph in 6.9 seconds.

[Source: Autobild via GermanCarBlog]