Will the new Audi TT be able to revive the legend?
In 1999 the first generation Audi TT broke cover as a new entry in the sports car arena. With a novel design that inspired a new lease of life in the Audi range, it soon gathered a sizable mass of followers. 2006 marked the birth of the second generation that sought to mend the less than brisk dynamic experience of the first and to introduce new technologies, as well as to provide a refreshed image of the original. Now, closing in to 2015, the third generation is here. Bringing with it a new attitude, a host of cosmetic and mechanical changes and an improvement over the performances of the former edition, the new TT promises to be the best choice in the small sports car sector.
The current model is based on the MQB platform, also found in the Audi A3 and the VW Golf, amid others. Part of an agreement between the large volume manufacturers, this much lauded platform allows an extended degree of flexibility, with regard to the suspension set-up, distribution of weight and the overall rigidity of the structure, turning it into an ideal choice for almost any small or compact vehicle.
The stiffer suspension – MacPherson in the front and double wishbones in the rear – in combination with the stiff chassis really brings up the best in the TT, as the car feels very stable at high speeds and before you know it, the maximum threshold of 155miles per hour is easily reached. Should you go for the Quattro TFSI variant, as our test car had, 0 to 62 mph will come in about 5.3 seconds, matching the manufacturer given time, so no false advertising here!
Mostly due to the changes that have taken place, the new TT feels much more nimble and easier to handle than the old version. Acceleration times are quicker, the steering response has gotten more precise and the way it handles when cornering at high speeds is bound to make you smile. The third generation is indeed, the best so far and represents a clear departure from the soft and receded nature of the first one.
In the past, due to specifically this issue, the car got the nickname of being a “hairdresser’s car”. Well, it’s definitely not anymore, as the changes have simply transformed it into something that will make the driver never want to get off the wheel!
Coming in two levels of trim, the S-line and the Sport, the latter equipped TT coupe will set you back £29,860 should you go for the front wheel drive, 2.0 litre TFSI engine, for which you’ll get 230 horsepower. The Quattro version costs £32,785 but it offers the choice of an automatic gearbox. The more expensive S-line has a starting point of £32,320 and a maximum threshold of £35,335, according to options. 62 mph comes in 7.1 seconds, if you’re sitting in the diesel, but the TFSI manages a much better performance, at 5.3 seconds. The diesel power plant, however, will cost you less to operate, as it returns 67.3mpg, while the petrol will only manage 47.9mpg for the manual and 44.1 mpg for the automatic.