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View all Audi A2 reviews
Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

Roomy, economical and fun to drive. What's not to like?

Audi A2 (00-05) - rated 4 out of 5
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PROS

  • Interesting design and quality construction
  • Economical, efficient and good fun
  • Better to drive than you'd ever imagine

CONS

  • Minor body damage expensive to fix
  • Too many bespoke parts inside and out
  • Lack of parts support from Audi

PROS

  • Interesting design and quality construction
  • Economical, efficient and good fun
  • Better to drive than you'd ever imagine

CONS

  • Minor body damage expensive to fix
  • Too many bespoke parts inside and out
  • Lack of parts support from Audi

Audi A2 rivals

The Audi A2 was a car ahead of its time. Launched in 2000 after being previewed as a concept car in 1997, it was revolutionary in that it was supremely light and efficient, as well as roomy and practical. In fact, it was Audi's first truly small car since the short-lived 50, which morphed into the Volkswagen Polo Mk1 back in the mid-1970s.

So, how did Audi achieve this lightness while ensuring it had all the safety kit demanded of a millennial family car? It was constructed largely from weight-saving aluminium, and underpinned by a clever spaceframe also costructed from the stuff, which meant it was around 200kg lighter than a comparable Mercedes-Benz A-Class.

The unconventional styling was a huge departure for Audi at the time, but it's fair to say that the A2 has aged very well – still looking distinctive now

Audi A2 interior

What this also meant was that when powered by the best of Volkswagen Group's small and efficient engines, all A2s were extremely economical with low CO2 figures. Even in the most powerful 1.6-litre petrol form, this surprisingly commodious small car could puch 50mpg in real-world driving, while the 1.4-litre TDI would top 70mpg in careful driving.

As a result, the Audi A2 could compete with the greenest new cars on sale today in terms of day-to-day running costs – something that even Audi's most visionary designers from the late-1990s would have struggled to comprehend.

It was designed primarily for town or city driving and its short length (less than four metres in total) made it easy to manoeuvre into small spaces. It's impressively roomy inside too with plenty of rear passenger room and a decent boot, making it an ideal car for small families.

Audi A2 rivals