What is it?
This is the Audi TT coupé, as furnished recently with a 1.8-litre TFSI engine. The 1.8-litre engine has been available in the entry-level TT convertible for some time, but it’s only recently that the same powerplant has been offered in the hard-top coupé.
Significantly, in base Sport trim, and with a six-speed manual gearbox as tested here, it prices the second-generation TT under £25,000.
What’s it like?
Surprisingly decent. It might not be the most scintillating of coupés to drive but there’s no denying the Audi TT’s aesthetic appeal.
However, it’s been hamstrung by a bottom-rung price point that’s put it out of the reach of many who aspire to its premium-quality, if somewhat homogenised, good looks. This version aims squarely to address that.
With a 1240kg kerb weight the TT is just about light enough not to feel short-changed by the 1.8-litre motor. It’s smooth, torquey and responsive enough for everyday motoring, with just enough power to deliver a degree of excitement appropriate to the coupé’s broadly capable if slightly sterile chassis. It even makes all the right noises if you press the pedal hard enough.
Should I buy one?
Maybe. To be fair, this combination of car and engine makes a surprisingly convincing case for itself.
The 1.8-engined TT is a full £3000 less than an otherwise similarly specced 2.0-litre version, and as such presents a considerably more affordable way of buying into the TT’s style-led cachet
It comes with the added bonus of cheaper running costs, too. A combined 44.1mpg and 149g/km drop the 1.8 down into VED band F, compared with band G for the 42.8mpg, 152g/km 2.0-litre TT.
Of course, the larger-engined car delivers 0-62mph in 6.1sec to the 1.8’s 7.2sec, but the reality is that in day to day driving up to seven tenths or so you just rev the smaller engine 10 per cent harder to extract, up to a point, the same performance as the 2.0 offers.
All that said, for £2000 less you could buy an equally powerful and better to drive 1.4 TSI Volkswagen Scirocco.
Audi TT 1.8 TFSI Sport
Price as tested: £24,070; 0-62mph: 7.2sec; Top speed: 140mph; Kerb weight: 1240kg; Economy: 44.1mpg (combined); CO2: 149g/km; Engine: 4 cyls in line, 1798cc, petrol; Max power: 158bhp at 4500-6300rpm; Max torque: 184lb ft at 1500-4500rpm; Gearbox: 6-spd manual