Audi TT Sport
The lighter, tuned TT Sport turned the already great TT into a proper drivers' car
The Audi TT revolutionised the coupé market when it was launched in 1999, setting new standards for design, quality and desirability. But it was the styling and wonderful interior, rather than its abilities on the road, that won all the attention. Put simply, the pretty two-seater didn’t get enthusiastic motorists excited.
The TT Sport was designed to change that when it arrived in 2005. Only 1,000 examples were sold in the UK, and with its two-tone paintwork and unique dished 18-inch alloy wheels, there was no mistaking it.
Inside, supportive race-style Recaro seats and an Alcantara-trimmed steering wheel make the TT Sport feel very special. To save weight, the rear seats were removed and a strut brace was fitted across the empty space. This helped the Sport to shed 49kg over the standard car. In mainland Europe, the maker took this diet even more seriously, as left-hand-drive models miss out on a radio and air-conditioning, too.
All TT Sports use the same 1.8-litre four-cylinder engine as its lesser stablemate, but it was tweaked to provide an extra 16bhp. Its torque output rose from 280Nm to 320Nm, too. With 237bhp at its disposal, the Sport certainly feels punchier behind the wheel. On the road, a lovely turbo whistle accompanies the excellent mid-range acceleration, while in the corners it has tighter body control. It isn’t as fast as the flagship 3.2-litre V6, but it is a better sports car.
Limpet-like grip combined with quattro traction to make it the sharpest-handling version of the first-generation TT. Harsh critics will complain about the unforgiving ride, but unique looks and thelimited production run make this one of the most desirable examples of Audi’s groundbreaking coupé. The original TT is already accepted as an automotive great, and in years to come the limited-edition Sport is sure to become a rare and sought-after classic.
WHY: Lightweight, performance-focused TT ensnared drivers
In this review
- 1IntroductionAudi's new RS5 has been launched on the 30th anniversary of Audi's quattro system. Here we hit the race track in 11 of the best four-wheel-drive cars has ever made...
- 2Audi UR QuattroOne of the first passenger cars to feature four wheel drive, the UR Quattro's engine, looks and handling propelled it to legendary status
- 3Audi Rally QuattroAfter transforming rallying for good, the Rally Quattro went on to win just about everything - with up to 600bhp under the bonnet
- 4Audi Sport QuattroThe 2.1-litre engine in the Sport Quattro produces 307bhp and shoots it to 60mph in 4.8 seconds. Not bad for 1984, or now for that matter
- 5Audi S2 CoupeSmoother S2 was a major departure from original Quattro.
- 6Audi RS2 AvantPorsche and Audi joined forces and engineered the 315bhp RS2 Avant. Less than 3000 were made and even fewer were RHD.
- 7Audi A4 Touring CarFielding an all-wheel drive Audi in the BTCC gave it the notoriety it deserved. It also got 4WD cars banned from entering ever again.
- 8Audi TT Sport - currently readingThe lighter, tuned TT Sport turned the already great TT into a proper drivers' car
- 9Audi RS4 AvantA spiritual successor to the Porsche-tuned RS2, the RS4 Avant blends supercar power with estate practicality
- 10Audi RS6The most powerful production Audi ever belongs in this list for that reason alone
- 11Audi TTSExtra power, sharper steering and better dynamics add extra thrills to the already superb TT
- 12Audi R8Fantastic handling, outstanding performance and looks that stop traffic, the R8 is an outstanding car