Being stylish means more than just keeping up with trends. It’s about remaining relevant even as fads come and go. The truly fashionable, however, are able to do more than just stay ahead – they are the trendsetters who rewrite the rules and end up establishing new benchmarks for others to follow.
This is what MINI accomplished when it launched the 21st century Cooper back in 2001. The iconic badge and funky design, coupled with kart-like handling, established it as a favourite among singles and DINK (dual income no kids) couples. Recently refreshed, the Cooper continues to offer buyers a mind-boggling array of customisation options. These attributes ensure that it continues to set the standard for stylish pocket hatches.
In line with Volvo’s “younger” direction, the C30 was launched in 2006. It illustrated how sexy the Swedish automaker could be on the road. Facelifted last year, the C30 made up for what it lacked in driving entertainment with its excellent ergonomics and proven safety credentials – a combination that appeals to snazzy yet pragmatic buyers.
Throwing its hat into this contest is the A1, Audi’s smallest and most affordable car today. Like a model that’s fashionably late to an exclusive, chi-chi party, the A1 has turned heads since its arrival in Singapore. Combining design elements from its stablemates with high-tech features, Audi’s newest creation has what it takes to redefine this segment.
Can the mighty MINI Cooper fend off this latest onslaught? Or will it have to step aside for a new leader of the pack? Read on to find out.