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FIRST DRIVE: NEW Audi TT RS Coupe and TT RS Roadster


Audi have gone back in time to an old and popular classic with their latest car launch. The Audi TT RS Coupe and Roadster draws more than just inspiration from the 1998 classic. The classic concept has been reworked using the very latest technological advances, the result being a blistering 400PS output and performance that could easily be associated with a car producing double the 2.5-litre displacement. Sub-four-second sprints and 174mph top speeds are achievable in each of the Coupé and Roadster variants which take to UK roads in December, edging the TT RS ever closer to the realm of the modern supercar elite.

audi-ttSometimes we forget to marvel at the magnificent right before our eyes. Well forget no more. The TT RS is the first series production Audi available with the Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) lights. These advanced new lamps in 3D design comprise four wafer-thin units, the largest of which bears the TT logo and the four Audi rings. They emit an extremely homogeneous, high-contrast light which can be continuously dimmed, does not cast any shadows and does not require any reflectors, making them both efficient and visually impressive.

The TT RS Coupe and Roadster will be available in six ‘standard’ colours including the RS-specific tones Nardo grey and Catalunya red. These are offered in combination with either matt aluminium or gloss black styling packages which soften or darken the look of the Singleframe grille surround, RS rear spoiler blade and diffuser insert. Inside, the super sports seats upholstered in Fine Nappa leather and the TT RS sport leather and Alcantara steering wheel with its new integral ‘satellite’ buttons for engine start/stop and Audi Drive Select functions are the first to grab attention.


Okay, both the Coupe and Roadster are aesthetically pleasing but what are they like to drive? Well, if speed is what floats your boat, the dandy TT RS models could be the car for you. Not only are these cars fast, there is a lot of power and torque there. The combination of the 7-speed S tronic transmission and Quattro permanent all-wheel-drive results in a class leading acceleration of 0-62 miles per hour in 3.9 seconds and top speeds of 155 miles per hour (option to 174 miles per hour available).

Audi have certainly stolen a march on their basket of rivals in terms of acceleration and competitive maximum speed. We tested the TT RS Coupe at the Great Tew racing circuit in Oxfordshire where we found the car to be very responsive in terms of steering and performance and the elaborate suspension that affixes the car to the road without compromise. The acceleration is exactly as it says on the tin, superfast. You accept a sports car to be fast as a standard but the Coupe’s energy in the initial take off is surprising and adds to the excitement of this RS driving experience. Sitting in the driver’s seat you feel like a king in the cockpit laden with an abundance of high performance technology waiting for you to twiddle with your fingertips.


The virtual cockpit displays mapping from the MMI navigation plus system which is standard for UK TT RS models in full ‘wide screen’ format. It also serves as the interface for the Audi Connect online services which are included as standard on a three-year subscription basis and can be extended at the end of the term. Highlights of Audi Connect include Google Earth mapping and Google Street View, online weather updates, travel information and news, access to Twitter and integration of a Wi-Fi hotspot for in-car web browsing on personal devices. Key technology options include the Audi phone box, which enables compatible mobile phones to be charged inductively and paired with the on-board antennae for optimal reception, and the new Audi smartphone interface displaying selected apps from a user’s handset directly in the Audi virtual cockpit. The Bang & Olufsen sound system is another highlight for fans of excellent acoustics.

The Roadster was a joy to drive across the beautiful and scenic Cotswold countryside, nothing quite like it the country air filling your lungs as you marvel at the growls and roars of a beautiful RS engine. English roads are typically narrow and windy, making for a perfect testing ground. Both the Coupe and Roadster lend themselves to customers who like speed, luxury and performance as this is exactly what Audi have delivered with this launch. Retailing at £51,800 (Coupe) and £53,550 (Roadster) these beauties are not exactly cheap. But then again premium is never cheap and that is what separates the men from the boys. Rival cars in the same class include the Porsche Boxster, Mercedes-Benz SLC 43 and BMW Z4 Roadster.

TT RS Coupe and Roadster Facts:

  • Epic five-cylinder honed over 40 years on road and rally stage evolves again to bring 400PS to the latest RS arrival from Audi Sport
  • Most powerful TT ever to enter series production will land in Audi Centres nationwide in December
  • Coupé priced at £51,800 OTR, Roadster at £53,550 OTR
  • Five-cylinder 2.5 TFSI linked to a seven-speed S tronic transmission produces 400PS and 480Nm between 1,700 and 5,850rpm
  • 0-62mph in 3.7 seconds (Roadster 3.9 seconds), potential top speed of 174mph (with optional package), up to 34.4mpg, CO2 from 187g/km
  • TT RS is the first series production Audi available with OLED rear lights

First driven by;

Al Chabvonga

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