2015 Audi TT road test review | Shades of seduction

The four rings have been in the spotlight over the past week with a bevy of vehicles showcased in the box office hit 50 Shades of Grey.

Given all the brand attention, the timing of the new TT coupe couldn't be better. And it borrows some styling cues from the 50 Shades star attraction, the R8 supercar.

While the TT doesn't have the same whipping power of the R8's V10 powerplant, it is still pretty quick, and it too is brimming with muscular appeal.

Starting from just above $70,000, it's currently available with a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine in two model lines: Sport and S Line.

Comfort

Chic minimalism meets ingenious thinking.

While the A3 saw a shift to fewer buttons, the TT has some awesome new features that will begin to flow through the range.

The set-up is intuitive once you start travelling, and means less time looking down at the dash.

Another cool new addition is the change to air-conditioning operations. Three turbine-looking air vents punctuate the dash, and each features a small digital control - one for the fan, another the temperature and the last controls air flow direction.

Fast and easy to use, it's a brilliant development.

Sporting seats offer good all-round support, with the flat-bottom steering wheel and chrome inserts befitting the exterior style.

Soft-touch materials are used across the dash, although there are some hard plastics on the door around the handle that are regularly touched.

On the road

The TT can back up its looks.

Fifty kilos lighter than its predecessor, the 2.0-litre donk does a stellar job of propelling the coupe.

Acceleration is unrelenting when called into action. With throaty tones above 4000rpm, and some wonderful barks on shifts when working hard, the little TT feels lithe and adept when pushed.

Put the hammer down in the front-wheel drive and it can be a handful. There is some torque steer if you get willing with the right foot, and those who enjoy sinking the hoof would be better suited to the Quattro all-wheel drive derivatives.

Feeling well planted in the bends, it embraces the twisty stuff, feeling confident and well hunkered.

Firm although compliant enough, the TT doesn't ride like the bone-rattling first generation.

Some road rumble is evident on coarse chip surfaces, but cruising is done easily, with the TT getting along nicely at 2000rpm when at highway speeds.

What do you get?

There is a choice of two trim specifications, Sport and S Line.

Sport comes with 18-inch alloys, sat nav with live traffic and maps updates, DVD capability, CD stereo with 10GB hard drive, parking sensors front and back, Xenon headlights with LED daytime running lights, Alcantara and leather trim along with electric front seats.

S Line has some extra additions, such as bigger alloys, body kit, sports front pews, LED headlights and an up-rated 155-watt sound system with nine speakers and two subwoofers.

There are also a range of wheel options, and for about $3700 you can get bigger 20-inch rubber ($1800 on S Line).

You do have to pay extra to get all the safety gear, and $2200 will add blind spot warning, semi-autonomous parking and automatic high beam.

And there is your typical optional array for customisation.

Funky factor

More than half of all TTs sold are to men, and the latest design could enhance that figure. While the first generation had more rounded features, the second iteration squared things off, yet this latest offering is chiselled.

With more masculine lines, the designers have maintained the "one-third window, two-thirds body" look, but with more light-catching lines. The grille has a wider stance for a broader presence and the four rings are on the bonnet - a styling cue from the barnstorming R8.

Practicality

Coupes are hardly family motoring, and the rear chairs are essentially beautifully lined handbag holders.

You do get Isofix and top tether points for kids' seats, but leg room and head room is restrictive.

Boot space is good, enough to fit a pair of larger suitcases.

Running costs

Fuel consumption of these punchy four-cylinder turbos is extremely good, and getting less than seven litres for every 100km is achievable even with regular squirts of the throttle.

Best resale will come with the automatic variants, and even though the manuals might be more fun for the "real drivers", this car primarily has metropolitan appeal.

The lowdown

This is the car that really put Audi on the map Down Under. Styling and drivetrain changes are not monumental, and they didn't need to be.

Two decades after the first concept was unveiled, Audi has remained true to the TT heritage.

With more rugged looks, brilliant cabin innovations, the brand's affordable halo coupe is getting better with age.

While it may not be pure raw-edged sports car, it looks the goods and is certainly quick enough, which ticks the vital boxes for buyers.

What matters most

What we liked: Awesome air-conditioning controls, driver's instrument display, masculine lines.

What we'd like to see: Less torque steer in the front-wheel drive, extra cup holder in the front console.

Warranty and servicing: Three-year/unlimited kilometres warranty with roadside assist. Servicing is every 15,000km or 12 months.

Verdict: 4 stars.

Vital statistics

Model: Audi TT.

Details: Two-door front or all-wheel drive performance coupe.

Engine: 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol generating maximum power of 169kW @ 4500-6200rpm and peak torque of 370Nm @ 1600-4300rpm.

Transmission: Six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch automatic.

Consumption: 5.9 litres/100km (manual, combined average), 6.3L/100km (a), 6.4L/100km (Quattro, a).

Performance: 0-100kmh in 5.9 seconds; 5.3 seconds (Quattro).

Bottom line plus on-roads: Sport - TT (m) $71,950, TT (a) $74,950, TT Quattro (a) $77,950. S Line - TT (m) $78,450, TT (a) $82,450, TT Quattro (a) $85,450.


Koala tree planting volunteers needed

Koala tree planting volunteers needed

Koala Tree Planting Day in Bangalow

Collective is never letting up

Collective is never letting up

Fighting against accommodation disruption

Parmas serve farmers

Parmas serve farmers

Remember to eat generously

Local Partners