Audi TT Review: The Twin Face
If you had Rs.50 — 60 lakhs and were looking for a wise investment option, chances are you would invest it in real estate, property or perhaps in a place which can guarantee a secure future. This is what most people would do in their normal lives.
But then there are a bunch of fellas who would enjoying breaking the norms of normal. This group chooses to enjoy the high spirit of life but in a controlled way. They are a perfect mix of professionalism and rebellion. Attitude with class – that’s what is in their DNA.
The Audi TT is one car which combines both worlds of the responsible and insane in correct proportions. Be it its radical chassis construction, the 2.0 TFSI engine or its flowing body lines. The TT is one coupe which is not flamboyantly loud but then it does leave an impression. It was like a dream comE true when we got to review the sporty Audi TT Coupe.
Audi TT Review: Exterior
This coupe was never a street tearing looking car and its subtle cues endorsed the same but then Audi redesigned the TT coupe to make it look dynamically stylish. The TT has always looked very subtle in stance but then the new one has got its turns and profiles which make it look sportier.
At a first glance, it will remind you of Tony Stark’s ride but then this one is not loud. The TT chooses to create an impression with its silent flowing contours. Front bumpers not have a bigger mouth to gulp in more air and the fog lamps have a new luster as they are finished in chrome. This one has a big yet bold nose in the form of a single radiator grille done in a high glosse matte finish with multi layers. The Quad chrome rings contrast really well with the dark profile in the background.
Sharp edged standard xenon headlamps have been redesigned too. This marks a farewell to the innocent looks of its predecessor. The headlight cluster also sports day time running lights which are made of twelve white light emitting diodes.
This compact coupe has won many international accolades coz of the way it has been designed. The Twin face here comes in the form of the combination of twin characteristics in its design language. It looks naïve and nimble but then look closely and you will find masculine lines flowing on the body.
The broad shoulder line runs straight across the body. The wheel arches have been flared more as a result it looks very chunky in profile. Since it is a coupe, you might want to leave your extra friends out as it just has two doors which are large enough for the front row.
The roof line flows in a forward leaning manner giving a motion when standing still look. In fact the flow is such that it gives a feeling that I can drive under the road too which would make the TT look like Jerry running under a carpet. No wonder the TT has a drag coefficient of 0.30. The new Audi TT is marginally bigger as it is 4187 mm in length now which is up by 2 cms though the width and height remain same. The increase in length gives it a dynamic stance.
Rear has been sculpted very beautifully with the flowing roof line ending at the lip of the boot line. The generous rear windshield makes the car look aerodynamic. The wide and big rear tail lamps add depth to the rear profile. The array of reflectors inside the tail light makes it interesting. The 2.0 TFSI has attention grabbing twin exhaust pipes at the rear. The exhaust note of the TT can be adjusted in 2 stages as well. No comment about the utility but then this one ranks very high on coolness quotient.
The most interesting bit is the tucked in spoiler. This lil thingy of a spoiler is very tactfully hidden / camouflaged with the flowing lines on the tail door. The spoiler pops out automatically when you decide to let your spirits take over your senses at 120 Km/hr and then it goes hiding as soon as you reach sanity at speeds of 80 Km/hr and below.
The Audi TT is a young sports car with the looks which can be termed as sporty but not aggressive. It is a coupe which I would drive it to play golf or perhaps gift one to my girl friend (#thought). Park it anywhere and be assured that your contact number would be spreading like wild fire. Trust me I would have just thrown the design board, if asked to improve this design further.
Audi TT Review: Interior
As disappointing it may sound but then the Audi TT for sure will make you split from your friends. The reason being it is a Coupe so not that you can travel with an army inside. Yes, technically speaking it has two rows of seats but then the second row will be more useful to carry your surf board, Golf sticks or perhaps your favorite Gibson guitars but then if you decide to squeeze in people in that space it would be an interesting sight to look and ponder at.
Once you are inside the cave of the Audi TT, it is a different world filled with gadgets, gizmos and steel finish. The cockpit makes you realize that the car which you saw from outside looks equally sporty from inside. The fit and finish is very Audi and as they rightly put it very uncompromising.
The speedometer which is hidden inside a cave has tubular ducts for the speedometer and the tachometer. The twin face in the interior design is in spite of the TT being a sports car boasting of high end leather and gadgets it still has a very simple design approach. It becomes an instant favorite when the car does not make you go through the manual to operate different buttons but instead is self exploring.
The central panel is slightly tilted towards the driver. The round AC vents are in brushed aluminum rims. The gear stick is draped in leather and is a dwarf stick with “TT” labeling on its head. The black and red stitch finish is superb and adds a performance car appeal in the TT.
The non Circular flattened at the bottom D Shaped steering wheel takes you as close as possible to an F1 steering wheel. Thankfully, this one is not as complicated as the one on an F1 car with traffic full of controls. This one with its thick rim, covered with high-grade Nappa leather, offers controls to change the mode of audio and adjust volume. This one has paddle shifters as standard equipment.
The version which we drove has an IPod dock hidden in the glove box but no USB option which seemed weird. So Audi guys knew it that one who owns this obviously has Steve Job’s creation and if he does not have one he should not be seen driving one of these. Also, if you decide to pair your phone with the car it would be of no use as the TT has no Bluetooth pairing option so you can’t play Bluetooth music as well. So all we listened to was the local RJs yapping their way to glory.
It is a sports car with practicality as seen with the comfort of its sports seats. Normally, in sports cars seats are mere excuse of stools with cushions. The companies don’t want the owners to be comfortable at all and instead sit in a cramped way and be on the performance mode throughout. The Audi TT luckily is not like that and fine Nappa leather seats offer sufficient comfort. This one has decent legroom for an average sized individual. While the ones who manage to squeeze themselves in the rear would pray to get out. This is not a negative as Audi essentially describes it as a 2+2 seating.
The rear bench seats can be collapsed to increase the boot space from 292 to 700 litres which is enough space to carry surf board, guitar, a baseball stick, a volley ball, wayfarers and Yes a small luggage bag too.
The interior trims of the TT have been done superbly. The black and red colour combo makes it spicy. Door pockets can hold a litre class contatiner. The central zone which has duo glass holders splits the cabin equally and creates a separate zone for the co-passenger. I would have liked the entertainment system to boast better User Interface but then except for that I did not intend to leave the cave that easily.
Audi TT Review: Performance
The Audi TT shows matured performance characteristic in its class. It may not be one of the Floor-it-and-the-road-gets-blur cars but then it has its tricks which are smartly hidden in the TFSI unit. It comes across as a tamed athlete.
As I got inside the cave of a cabin, I had immense confidence. Not that the roving eyeballs and hush hush questions about me were not ego boosters enough. As I cranked up the cat, I was expecting some sort of drama in the exhaust note especially as this one had a dual setup but sadly there was no meaty roar and instead it was a muffled exhaust note sounding like a gunshot via a silencer.
The taut transmission stick was all ready to be dancing around. I decided to ditch the stick and tease the paddle shifters instead. Since this is a small unit the engine does not behave very enthusiastically at the very beginning but then once its heated up it is pure fun.
The TT comes with a 6 speed S Tronic dual clutch transmission setup. In the dual clutch transmission, there is a multi clutch box. The odd gears (1,3,5 and Reverse) are operated via K1 clutch while the even gears are engaged via K2 clutch. The synchronization happens extremely fast and as a result there is no lag experienced while shifting gears at various rpms.
If you have cut a paper on a curved dotted line you have experienced how it feels while turning the Audi TT. The coupe forgets to turn and just corners it at high speeds. I took all the curvy roads possible during this review. The steering wheel is so very precise and gives fantastic feedback. I remember my good old days of Midtown Madness. Only that crashing in a car, chasing away from cops is fun in the virtual world as there is no “Reset” button in real life.
So what makes the TT’s chassis as flexible as this? It is the beautiful compact construction of the TT with few movements. It also features Audi’s legendary Quattro technology which delivers power on all wheels. It has McPherson struts for the front wheels. The steering wheel offers a variable feedback depending on the speed at which the vehicle is travelling. Also the TT makes use of recuperation system that recovers energy during braking and coasting phases.
The Audi TT is powered by a 1984cc (2.0) TFSI engine which creates a power of 211 Hp and a torque of 350Nm at a range of 1600 to 4200 rpm. It makes use of an AVS (Audi Valvelift System) which controls the exhaust valve system to adjust and increase the power, torque and efficiency. Just below the leather drapes transmission stick is a small “S” button. I knew it this means something exciting and like a curious toddler I pressed it. The TT converts from the “Normal” mode to a “Launch Program” mode as this one makes the car ready for a bang on precise acceleration from stand still. If the S mode is not sufficient you can manually get the Spoiler up by a touch of a button. How cool is that? Try it while standing in a traffic signal. The scenario changes and the road becomes a track. As you get fully ready and decide to blast the car a responsibility bell rings in your head and you are compelled to drive sensibly.
The paws acting to stop the TT are much in sync too. The front disc measures 340mm while the one at the rear measures 310mm. New to the TT is the optimization of the stability program.
So for the ones who have read the above content, it is obvious that they have formed an image about the TT as one insane sports car. This is where it gets tricky. The Audi TT not only offers sports car performance figures but also packs in the practicality of a normal street car. This one gave a best fuel mileage of 10 km/h which is superb. Maneuvering it in Mumbai traffic was not a task at all.
Audi TT Review: Conclusion
The TT Coupe fairs in racing red colors compared to its rivals. Why would someone really buy the TT? The answer is not a brainer. Someone who wants to have fun in a sane way without getting blurred about practicality should definitely go in for this coupe. It is the most reasonably athletic car we have come around.
Rivals with a bigger mouth and engine are the BMW Z4 and the Nissan 370Z. BMW which is desperately trying to get the number one premium car maker tag in India has been time and again dominated by Audi. The Z4 which is available at Rs.64.6 lakhs is too hefty priced also it caters only performance needs of a consumer which strips its real time practical value completely. So Z4 becomes the less preferred option unless you wish to throw your money buying a car which is almost a performance sports car.
The Nissan 370Z is a pure bred sports car and becomes the correct choice if performance is the core need. It is priced between the TT and the Z4. The 370Z makes the Z4 look more of a poser sports car as its timings are scarily fast.
But then our TT Coupe, The Twin Face Machine is the best when it comes to pricing, performance and fun factor. The TT will not grace your parking for 6 days so that you can enjoy it on some Sunday. It is car which can get any John or Joe to office from home but in style. In case your appraisal is due soon, make sure you pass on the Audi TT brochure to your boss and perhaps … (#dreams)
Review as seen on CarTrade.com