Audi has announced the arrival of the range-topping A1 model called the A1 quattro. Just 333 examples of the form will be built in 2012, and all will be left-hand drive units.

The vehicle is powered by a 2.0 TFSI mill offering 256 hp at 6,000 rpm and 350 Nm of torque available between 2,500 and 4,500 rpm, which is of course delivered to all four wheels. Performance figures include a 0-100 km/h time of 5.7 seconds and a 245 km/h top speed.

The 2.0 TFSI delivers its power to the quattro permanent all-wheel drive system via a six-speed manual transmission, which features an electronically controlled, hydraulically actuated multi-plate clutch whose package of plates rotates in an oil bath. There’s an electronic differential lock in the mix, of course.

The car’s chassis has been adapted to the dynamics of the drivetrain, and is much more tautly tuned than that of the production model. The front suspension is a McPherson construction, while a four-link axle is used at the rear, and the electrohydraulic power steering on the car features a direct 14.8:1 steering ratio.

The Audi A1 quattro rides on 18-inch cast alloy wheels, finished in Glacier White, wrapped with 225/35 series tyres. Elsewhere, the internally vented 312 mm diameter front brake discs are clamped by black calipers.

The car is available only in Glacier White metallic, with a high-gloss black roof, some dashes of red and a two-colour rear wing providing contrast. Decent amount of tint to be found too – the rear windows are blackened, as are the LED rear lights. The exhaust system terminates in two polished dual tailpipes on the left and the right, adding yet more flair to the equation.

Inside, black is the thematic shade, with the seats and door armrests covered in Silk Nappa leather, with contrasting red seams. The S sport seats up front have pronounced bolsters, integrated head restraints and a quattro badge on the backrest covers.

Elsewhere, the lower section of the centre console is in high-gloss black, while the footrest and the pedal caps are in brushed stainless steel. Red seams frame the floor mats, and the door sill trims bear A1 quattro badges.

As for the instrument cluster, unique cues include white needles, a red tachometer and a quattro logo. Meanwhile, the multifunction flat-bottom sport steering wheel is wrapped in leather, again with contrasting red stitching and it also sports the car’s serial number.

There’s also plenty of other mod cons, including xenon plus headlights, high-beam assistant, adaptive brake lights, LED interior lighting package, light and rain sensor, automatically dimming interior mirror, rear parking system, automatic air conditioning, alarm system, storage package, convenience key and cruise control.

Rounding things off are a Bose sound system with 14 speakers and 465 watts of power, and the woofers in the doors are indirectly lit with light guide LEDs.