Summer 2014 brings the release of the new, third-generation Audi TT, but if you can’t wait that long, we’ve got all the details on Audi’s new sports coupe. The headlines are it’ll be lighter and more powerful, supposedly sportier to drive, and – as you can see from our spy shots gallery – more aggressive-looking than any TT that’s gone before.
Audi’s 2014: what’s changed style-wise?
Though the new TT maintains the compact proportions and cab-back profile of the outgoing model – plus the blistered wheelarches than cut into the bonnet shutline – the details are all sharper, more defined, and aggressive-looking. Don’t be fooled by the split grille on this test mule: the production model will wear the single-frame, hexagonal trademark not dissimilar to the Sport Quattro concept we’ve driven in the latest issue of CAR magazine. The headlights too are straight-edged, and crammed with LED jewellery. There’s a neat kink in the tick C-pillar as well, and slimmer rear light clusters.
The 2+2 (just about)-seater coupe will launch first, with a two-seater soft-top following soon after. Prices aren’t expected to rise greatly versus the outgoing version.
Are there more significant changes underneath?
Yes – thanks to that platform again: VW Groups’ do-it-all MQB architecture. The modular chassis, which already supports the VW Golf, Audi A3, Seat Leon and Skoda Octavia is being set to work in its sportiest application yet. Stifle that yawn though – because it’s not just VW’s coffers which will feel the benefit.
Thanks to MQB’s weight-saving measures, which will be furthered in the new TT by Audi’s ‘Ultra’ lightweight nouse, the new coupe will weigh in 60kg less than its predecessor – engineers are said to be targeting a 1200kg kerbweight. If Ingolstadt nails the brief, the new TT will be lighter not only than a Porsche Boxster, but the Toyota GT86/Subaru BRZ twins as well. Is this the TT to at last handle as good as it looks?
Weight goes down, power goes up
It’ll be faster, in any case. All new TT engines will see a slight power bump: the volume sellers will be the 178bhp 1.8-litre and 222bhp 2.0-litre. The TT S, being essentially an Audi S3 in a sexy dress, will use its hot hatch stablemate’s 296bhp turbocharged four-pot and Quattro all-wheel drive, with a choice of six-speed manual or S-tronic double-clutch gearboxes.
And if I’m really power crazy?
You’ll be after the TT RS, which flies in the face of downsizing and maintains its rorty, thirsty 2.5-litre turbocharged five-cylinder engine. It’ll be keeping R8 drivers honest too: power has been boosted from 355bhp in the outgoing TT RS Plus to a huge 380bhp – more than a Porsche 911 Carrera – wiith torque pegged at a staggering 406lb ft. Insiders report the lighter, fightier TT RS will launch to 62mph in 4.0sec dead, and run into its 155mph limiter with ease.
Is there still a TT TDI?
A diesel will be part of the range too – but this time, it’s not Quattro only. Front-drive will be standard-fit on the new diesel TT, which musters 180bhp, 258lb ft and could return close to 60mpg on a cruise. It’s the sensible sports car for people not sensible enough to buy a VW Golf GTD!
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