Audi UK sold 100,845 cars in 2008, and this year it wants to sell even more. But how can the automaker pull that off in days like these? By putting its smaller 1.8-liter TFSI four-cylinder engine in the TT Roadster (since the Brits just looooove their convertibles), thereby creating a car that is more economical, environmentally friendly and, hopefully, almost as fun as its 2.0 TFSI brother.

The four-pot's 158-horsepower, 184-lb-ft works through a six-speed manual and pulls from 0-to-62 mph in 7.4 seconds and maxes out at a top speed of 139 mph. The car's single trim specification offers 17-inch Y-design alloy wheels, a power top with heated glass rear window, power wind deflector, power windows and mirrors, Tetrus cloth upholstery, climate control and a Chorus CD audio system.

The TT Roadster 1.8 can be ordered now with an on-the-road price pegged at £23,910 ($34,717 USD), versus £27,355 ($39,748 USD) for the 2.0 TFSI. Deliveries will begin in April and the full press release from Audi is after the jump.

PRESS RELEASE

UK Product Communications – Milton Keynes, March 23, 2009

AUDI TT ROADSTER SLIMS DOWN FOR SUMMER: Shapely Audi soft-top downsizes to 1.8 TFSI power to create a more attainable but no less desirable new version

* New TT Roadster 1.8 TFSI available to order now priced at £23,910 OTR (2.0 TFSI Roadster £27,355 OTR) – first deliveries in April
* All-new 1.8 TFSI engine linked to six-speed manual transmission delivers 160PS peak from 4,500rpm to 6,200rpm and 250Nm from 1,500rpm to 4,500rpm, 0-62mph in 7.4 seconds, top speed 139mph, combined mpg 40.9, CO2 159g/km
* Available exclusively in standard trim, including 17-inch Y-design alloy wheels, powered hood and wind deflector, Tetrus cloth upholstered sports seats, electronic climate control, powered windows and mirrors and Chorus CD audio system
* Lightweight steel and aluminium hybrid body shell (58% aluminium) and front-wheel-drive chassis maximise performance and handling potential

This summer a new version of the acclaimed Audi TT Roadster will make it a little easier for sun worshippers to weather the economic storm as they work on the all-important tan. Priced at £23,910 OTR, and due with its first UK customers in April, the new TT slots into the range just below the existing 2.0 TFSI model costing £27,355 OTR, and runs its more familiar relative impressively close both on the equipment checklist and on the move thanks to its all-new 1.8-litre TFSI petrol engine.

Critically acclaimed for its robust performance and level-headed economy in the equally sought-after A3 Cabriolet, the state-of-the-art turbo charged and directly injected 1.8-litre TFSI unit is linked to a six-speed manual transmission without exception, and delivers 160PS and a healthy peak torque output of 250Nm from 1,500rpm right through to 4,500rpm. Liberated as fully as possible by the lightweight hybrid TT body shell, which in the case of the Roadster incorporates 58 per cent aluminium content strategically positioned for optimum weight distribution, the high-tech engine powers the TT Roadster 1.8 TFSI to 62mph in 7.4 seconds. A top speed of 139mph is possible where conditions allow, as is an impressive combined fuel consumption figure of 40.9mpg, equating to CO2 output of 159g/km.

Underpinning the latest Roadster is the same advanced suspension configuration that has consistently earned plaudits in the TT for its balance and agility, and in common with other TT models this can be further enhanced at extra cost by the Audi magnetic ride adaptive damping system. 17-inch Y-design alloy wheels connect the high-tech chassis to the road in the new 1.8 TFSI model.

From the comfort of Tetrus cloth-upholstered sports seats, TT Roadster 1.8 TFSI drivers can operate the standard electric windows, powered soft top and powered wind deflector. Incorporating a heated glass rear window, the soft top opens or closes in just 12 seconds, and can be operated at speeds of up to 19mph. Electronic climate control, a Chorus CD audio system and a Driver's Information System (DIS) are also factory fitted.

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