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The forthcoming Audi S1 has been spied testing on German roads, suggesting development of the performance super-mini is progressing ahead of its anticipated 2014 unveiling.

Spied in test mule guise lapping Germany’s Nurburgring early last year and undergoing cold-weather testing in Sweden in December, the Audi S1 will slot into the German car maker’s performance range below the $59,900 Audi S3.

Spotted by CarAdvice’s spy photographers on public roads and inside an Audi facility, the camouflage-wrapped S1 will be a tamer and more accessible model compared with the 188kW/ 350Nm 2.0-litre turbo four-cylinder Audi A1 quattro – limited to 333 left-hand-drive units.

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Speculation suggests power for the Audi A1-based S1 will come from a turbocharged 2.0-litre engine delivering an estimated 162-184kW to all four wheels via Audi’s renowned quattro system.

The package should comfortably trump the quickest A1currently available, the $39,000 front-wheel drive Audi A1 Sport, which accelerates from 0-100km/h in 6.9 seconds courtesy of its 136kW/250Nm twin-charged 1.4-litre four-cylinder petrol engine.

Set to be offered in three- and five-door body styles, the S1 has unique headlights with LED daytime running lights, revised tail-lights and a new rear diffuser with a quad-exit exhaust system.

Still yet to be confirmed by Audi, the S1 is tipped to debut early in 2014, likely at next year’s Geneva motor show in March.

Click on the Photos tab for more images.

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