Just when you though Audi were getting carried away with the TTS and TT TDI we have the much more sensible 1.8 turbo. And no, this isn’t the old car come back to haunt us, but an entry-level version of the new car that goes on sale in 2009. And CAR Online has managed to get behind the wheel before anyone else.
This new TT uses Audi’s latest 1.8TFSI engine, produces 158bhp, 184lb ft of torque, and returns over 40mpg. Thanks to the second generation TT’s lightweight aluminium and steel construction this also means 0-62mph in just 7.2 seconds, and a top speed of 140mph.
But doesn’t the Audi TT 1.8T feel a little slow?
Actually, no. Not even if you’ve just stepped out of the new 268bhp TTS. It’s front-wheel drive only, of course, so traction out of slow corners in the wet (and it was very very wet) can be a bit interesting, but as a package this engine seems to suit the TT brilliantly. There’s no lag to speak of and the sweet six-speed manual gearbox means you can keep things strolling along very nicely. The whole thing weighs just 1240kg in Coupé form, too, so the chassis feels as sharp as ever.
Click 'Next' below to read the rest of our Audi TT 1.8T first drive
How much then?
Well, we can’t actually tell you for sure just yet – Audi UK is still in negotiations with the factory. But an insider assures us it should be a good £2k cheaper than the equivalent 2.0-litre turbo that currently represents the entry point into TT ownership. These cars currently start at £25,210 on the road. A £23k TT? Yes please. Oh, and look out for a Quattro version of the 2.0 arriving at the same time.
The forthcoming entry-level TT is a base model car anyone would be proud of. Fast enough, fun to drive, and frugal. It’s not the ultimate driver’s car but no TT is. However, this car is definitely worth waiting for…