2007 Audi TT
By Matt Michels
When Audi released the TT in 1998, it received worldwide acclaim for its unique and inventive styling. But after 8 years of strong sales success, Audi decided it was time to release a new generation.
The styling of the new TT has become more aggressive with a sharper cut hood and shoulder lines, but it retains the classic profile of the original TT with its arched roof curving towards the smooth back end. Like its predecessor, this profile generates a lot of aerodynamic lift at the rear, so Audi adopted a recessed rear spoiler that automatically lifts at 75 mph. The new TT will also continue to be a 2+2, with rear seats only suitable for children or golf bags.
The chassis and drivetrains of the new TT are derived from the new Volkswagen Golf, with its engine and gearbox mounted transversely between the front wheels. The standard TT will be front wheel drive, but Quattro AWD based on the Haldex electromagnetic multi-plate clutch system will be made available as an option on most models, and will be standard on the VR6 models. For transmissions, there's a choice between a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed dual-clutch DSG paddle-shift gearbox, which Audi is now calling "S-tronic".
The engine range consists of a 200 hp 2.0 TFSI direct injection turbo (same as Golf GTI) and a 250 hp 3.2 VR6 (from the Golf R32). Top speed are 149 mph and 155 mph respectively with the DSG gearbox taking 6.1 sec to go 0-60 mph for the 2.0 TFSI and 5.5 sec for the VR6. That's a considerable improvement over the outgoing 1.8T and 3.2 VR6. The conventional manual gearbox takes a couple more tenths of seconds.
The new TT's body is 137 mm (5.4") longer and an astonishing 78 mm (3.1") wider than its predecessor. At 1,842 mm (72.5") wide, it is the widest car in its class. For example, the new TT is 60 mm (2.4") wider than BMW's Z4 roadster. This growth in width should be key to handling improvements. To compensate for the additional material needed to cover such a large body, Audi made the hood, front fenders, roof, and doors out of aluminum, while the panels on the rear body remained steel to help conserve weight balance. Overall, 69% of the body panels are aluminum, but most likely due to cost reasons, the chassis remains steel monocoque rather than incorporating Audi's ASF (Aluminum Space Frame), which can be found on the A8 and A2.
The suspension is McPherson struts up front with multi-link at the rear, like all Golf V based cars. However, the new TT receives magneto-rheological adaptive dampers (similar to the recent Ferrari 599GTB and Corvette C6) to offer smoother ride in comfort mode and stiffer settings for hard cornering. It's unsure whether this new system was acquired through Delphi like the Ferrari and Corvette, or through one of the German suspension suppliers like Bilstein or Bosch. Regardless, the new TT should have handling characteristics leagues above the last generation.
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Pictures of the Audi TT
Click pictures to enlarge
Posted April 10, 2006
Photos courtesy of