Audi has gone all out to ensure that the second-generation TT can mount a credible attack on the prowess of the BMW Z4 Coupe, Mercedes-Benz SLK, Nissan 350Z and Porsche Cayman.
Audi’s primary target was reducing the TT’s weight, and at 1430kg, this new 3.2-litre V6-engined car is 60kg lighter than the car it replaces.
Under the clamshell bonnet of the initial range-topping version lurks Audi’s familiar 3.2-litre V6 engine, complete with direct injection and a high 11.3:1 compression ratio. Mounted transversely but slightly lower and further back in the engine bay than before – both in a bid to improve the overall centre of gravity and to ensure sufficient clearance from the bonnet, in line with the latest pedestrian safety regulations – the compact 24-valve unit kicks out 247bhp at 6300rpm, along with 235lb ft of torque between 2500 and 3000rpm.
The defining feature of the new TT’s driveline is Audi’s updated six-speed S-tronic gearbox (nee DSG). Available as a £1400 option above the standard six-speed manual, the double-clutch unit is perfectly suited to the 3.2-litre V6’s flexible nature. It even manages to improve on the previous DSG’s trick of providing that rare combination of smoothness and speed of gearchange.