Few things command respect as an Audi car and very few cars in history would go down and scream that my design language is original. Moreover, with the few cars around here, there is very much a chance that the TT would indeed be a part of all the brouhaha over their design language. Infact, every iteration of the Audi TT has been a revelation in itself. Over the years, the Audi TT diversified into various other branches such as a convertible form and the original coupe form. The earlier Audi TT was a wonderful car and the new 2011 Audi TT bows down to the rigors of the new age Audi styling with a front end which has been hopped up a bit. Now, the Audi doesn’t get styling updates too often, plus there is a new style mantra going on in Audi. We got a 2011 Audi TT for a review with us, though, it was there only for 2 days, but still each and every road tester out here could manage to envisage a glimpse of what the TT has to offer with respect to real life practicality and also fun at the same time.
Heads on, it is difficult to distinguish the 2011 Audi TT with its siblings, however the slightly raised stance would give away that this is a TT afterall. Unlike other Audi cars here in North America, this one does have fog lamps as part of the package. Angel eyes LED lamps can be turned off though. The edges have been smoothened out more and the car feels like the first generation TT with more modern cues. The one that we had for the review was the coupe one and had the 19 inch wheels as part of the package. The OEM alloy wheel design though could have been better. The twin tail pipes, however, are carried over from each of the previous Audi TT models. The grille accents are new, so are the bumpers as also the chrome trim running across the length of the car. The rear design especially that of the tail lamps is more 3D in nature and has that feel good factor when lit up.
Again, there was nothing to fault in the older TT version that could have possibly being changed in the newer or rather 2011 Audi TT version. The interiors are understatedly Audi with that flat bottomed steering wheel and minimum steering mounted controls. The meter dials speak of the usual VW influence with the large twin hooded binnacles and two smaller dials nestled between them. There is an abundance of air vents in the cabin. The dead pedal as also the other pedals are drilled units and the former is one of the biggest offered in a car, this side of Lamborghini. Audi have recently put in a touchscreen system in the middle which has got all the necessary controls to it. The other usual bits include the VW locking system, electronically controlled mirrors and other oddities. The front seats are bolsterous but a tad firm. The MMI interface is easy to decipher and understand. The car may look deceptively small like from the exteriors, however, it is as spacious as it can be from the interiors. But this limit for space is restricted to only two. The rear seats are there for only namesake and the boot space is also good. Adding a practicality touch is the completely foldable rear seats and the car gets a fillip for its everyday usability.
Handling and ride quality
The 2011 Audi TT has got firmer springs in place from last year’s sample. It also has a tuning which would suit most of the drivers and would definitely please the purists as well. The chassis of this car is built on the Audi Space Frame thing and this gives a leeway for the air suspension to make its presence felt. The ride is not utterly firm as in the Porsche Cayman, but then it wouldn’t be called comfortable either. NVH levels are present as and when you want them to be. Putter around at ridiculously low speeds, and the TT would display no hint of its exhaust deepness. Handling is at par with its competition with the engine of the TT directing power to all the 4 wheels. The legendary Quattro system has been part of the TT since time immemorial. The steering wheel has got lesser ratios than last year and this makes it a neat unit to use around.
Engine, performance and fuel efficiency
The 2011 Audi TT has seen a change in its engine configuration from only TSI to TFSI. This new 2.0 liter engine now produces 211 Hp of power and 258 pound feet of torque. Audi has ditched its 6 speed manual transmission and has got an S-tronic transmission in placed with dual clutch system and 6 gears to play around with. 0-60 mph is achieved in only 5.2 second whilst the top speed that we could muster on this baby Audi was 130 mph. Well, Audi says that this is an electronically limited top speed and the RS version of this car can well gallop upto 155 mph. The engine sounds well in its execution through the different gates and the gear shift also carries through with a finesse. Revving each gear through its limits is also a fine task and one which many would enjoy to the core. We actually did and in the end ended up giggling. The standard brakes have ample bite but we suspect that over the time, with the kind of abuse that we were subjecting the car to, they would fade fast and hard. Audi should have provided the optional brakes available in 2010’s RS option. Then there is ABS, EBD, ESP, traction control and other nannies to take care of the braking scene. Safety features are well cared for with the 2011 Audi TT receiving a 4 star ratings for crash safety. Fuel efficiency figures aren’t quoted by Audi, however, we managed to get 25 mpg in the city use while the highway figure rose upto 32 mpg. Enough, for a sportscar mimicking car.
As for the price, the 2011 Audi TT price starts from $36932 and start decking up the cars with the options and the price count goes north and ends at $10k more. At these options, there are other German cars to consider and ones which provided purer daring driving experiences but none would be as practical in everyday use as the 2011 Audi TT.