From £13,420
Stylish, economical and good to drive; the TDI succesfully adds another dimension to the TT

Our Verdict

Audi TT

The Audi TT remains a design icon, and is now a car that’s genuinely fun to drive no matter what engine or trim you choose

  • First Drive

    Audi TT S coupe first drive review

    In most powerful S form the third-generation Audi TT possesses real dynamic capability – and plenty of appeal as a classy premium coupé
  • First Drive

    Audi TT 1.8 TFSI Sport

    Entry-level engine option means Audi TT 1.8 TFSI Sport adds value to the hard-top TT range

What is it?

This is something rare – a mid-sized, two-plus-two, diesel coupe, the TT’s only direct opposition the seriously handsome and seriously flawed Alfa Romeo Brera, and the more able but less handsome BMW 123d.

The diesel engine in question is Audi’s new and excellent 168bhp common rail 2.0 litre TDI, which runs to 140mph, zipping through 62mph in 7.5seconds on the way. Not bad at all, but what’s really compelling is that this performance comes with a combined fuel consumption figure of 53.3mpg, promising the real world possibility of consumption in the high 40s, and CO2 emissions of just 139g/km.

Just as pleasing, the diesel pushes out 258lb ft of torque – the same as the TTS musters – promising effortless cruising and easy overtaking. That there’s so much torque is why the TDI comes with a Quattro drivetrain as standard, the front wheels unable to cope with this kind of thrust on their own.

Otherwise, this oil-burning TT is largely as for the stock 2.0 turbo that we already know, and it can only be had with a six-speed manual transmission despite the availability of a twin clutch S Tronic gearbox on the TTS.

What’s it like?

Civilised, effortless and a very satisfying way to beat the system, few other cars this fast and this sexy managing around 50mpg.

You sometimes hear a low, dull drone from this diesel if you listen hard, but what you won’t hear is the harsh cackle and thrum that you get from so many oil-burners, making the TDI’s presence beneath the TT’s shapely bonnet seem entirely appropriate.

It will seem even more so when you get this car on a fast, open road, the generous torque reserve providing useful acceleration even at 80mph in sixth when you’re cruising, and much stouter urge if you drop a couple of ratios.

And pick-up from low engine speeds is prompter than you’ll find with many turbodiesels, the variable vane turbocharger helping here.

This TT can optionally be had with magnetic dampers - they do little for its ride in sport – but in standard form it is comfortably firm, if a little jostling over smaller, sharper bumps. Otherwise this is a very refined car, no small part of its sophistication down to its high standard of finish, the high-grade furnishings of its cabin, a good driving position and comfortable, supportive seats.

Handling is tidy and confident, but tight, slippery bends taken hard betray its basic urge to understeer, a condition the Haldex all-wheel drive system is too slow to counter.

Should I buy one?

Yes, if a super-economical, sexy coupe is your desire, and as mentioned, there are precious few of these.

Apart from its looks, the diesel TT plays another strong hand with its exceptional combination of performance and economy, which should appeal to both company and private buyers. The TDI model successfully adds another dimension to this desirable coupe.

Join the debate

Comments
17

2 May 2008

This looks like a seriously desirable car. Would be perfect if they did it with the DSG (or whatever its called now) gearbox. I guess all those forthcoming coupes (Ford Capri, Subaru/Toyota, Volkswagen Scirocco) will have a job bettering this Audi - well maybe not the Scirroco if they give the same engine and gearbox and it works out cheaper.


Enjoying a Fabia VRs - affordable performance

2 May 2008

I think this is going to be one hell of a car (probably why I have just ordered one), good quality diesel sports/coupe’s are very thin on the ground, hopefully we will get a diesel Z4 to add to the mix sometime soon. This is almost the perfect car, good fuel economy and co2 output alongside the TT’s already good handling.

Just a note on the Scirrocco, am I the only one who is disappointed by it? I am sure it will be a great car from an engineering/driving point of view, but why does it look like a hatch? To me the original was a classic coupe, this is just another good hatch in a market full of good performance hatch’s. Right or wrong, for me it has the image of a Golf with a different body and if I am in the market for a coupe why the hell would I have a hatch.

2 May 2008

Alfa have been doing a sporty diesel coupe for years before the Brera, its called the Alfa GT.

The GT Q2 also has 170bhp, a decent suspension setup plus LSD for a few k less that an Audi, its a cracking car for the money.

2 May 2008

[quote sandys]Alfa have been doing a sporty diesel coupe for years before the Brera, its called the Alfa GT.

The GT Q2 also has 170bhp, a decent suspension setup plus LSD for a few k less that an Audi, its a cracking car for the money.[/quote]

Brilliant as long as your local Alfa dealer has a good coffee area and you can work from there to as thats where your be spending most your time.

2 May 2008

this looks like a pretty good car and l'm sure it is but i'd still have the petrol. the world diesel in anything smaller than a 3 series or C Class just doesn't do it for me. I don't even like the fuel in the first place. I'd still the 2.0 TFSI. And as for the Z4 diesel, i seriously hope they don't.

2 May 2008

That old stereotype never dies, a shame really as a lot of people miss out on a cracking car due to their blinkers, I've sold mine now for a sensible family vehicle but in the 3 years and 60k I ran mine it barely needed to visit the dealer, bit of servicing and a some damage from the many trackdays I took it on, but other than that it was very good indeed.

2 May 2008

The JDpower surveys tell me this isnt just a stereo type.

2 May 2008

Never liked the original TT. Just looked too dumpy to me and was a pretty wooden drive.

But the new TT is something else. Although only subtly changed from previous model, it manages to look so much better and of course is a much better drive too. And this seems to be the most sensible version. I'd be seriously tempted by the TDI. Only thing is, the 123d, which admittedly doesn't look as good, is even better to drive with an even better engine/performance and is roomier too.

2 May 2008

[quote sandys]Alfa have been doing a sporty diesel coupe for years before the Brera, its called the Alfa GT.

The GT Q2 also has 170bhp, a decent suspension setup plus LSD for a few k less that an Audi, its a cracking car for the money.[/quote] That’s correct it is, or at least it would be if I had an Alfa dealer within 40 miles.

2 May 2008

I know some people are still prejudiced against diesel, but modern diesel engines are so good (in real world driving), and the cost of driving is getting ever more expensive with fuel and tax going up all the time. Diesels are just far too tempting for so many people, that like it or not there has to be a diesel Z4 sooner or later. The potential in that market sector can’t be ignored, 53mpg, co2 of 140 (TT TDi), alongside the real world performance makes it very difficult to justify the 2.0 FSI petrol as an everyday car no matter how good it is. Same goes for a theoretical comparison of a 2.0 petrol Z4 against the very good 120d (or 123d) BMW diesel engine in a Z4.

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