2008 TT New Car Test Drive
Audi has redesigned the TT for the 2008 model year. Audi's goal in the redesign was to make a bigger sports car with better handling characteristics. We think they succeeded. The new car is wider and longer than last year's model for more comfort yet it feels light and tossable.
The 2008 Audi TT will appeal to true sports car enthusiasts and weekend cruisers alike. Handling is crisp and steering is direct. With the standard 17-inch tires, the ride is quite compliant for a sports car, but it can be busy and bumpy with the available 18s and 19s. The interior is top-notch Audi. Tight panel gaps and soft-touch materials abound. The new, bigger TT is more accommodating to larger drivers than most of the other sports cars in this class. Both engine choices offer brisk performance, and the 2.0T is easy on gas.
The new Audi TT comes in a range of body styles, with engine and transmission options, and available all-wheel drive. You can choose anything from an affordable, high-mileage hatchback with plenty of cargo capacity to a more-powerful, high-end two-seat roadster with unique interior appointments. Watch your options, though, because pricing can run high. No matter what TT you choose, you'll be sure to have fun behind the wheel.
The TT is once again offered as a two-seat roadster or 2+2 coupe. Each is available with front-wheel drive or quattro all-wheel drive. Both body styles are 5.4 inches longer and 3.1 inches wider than the previous TT, which was last offered in 2006. The wheelbase has grown as well, up 1.8 inches to 97.2, but the weight is down more than 150 pounds, thanks to the extensive use of aluminum. V6 and turbocharged four-cylinder engines return, but the four-cylinder is a 2.0-liter instead of a 1.8.
Both the coupe and roadster are offered as front-wheel-drive 2.0T and all-wheel-drive 3.2 quattro models. The 2.0T models have a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that makes 200 horsepower between 5100 and 6000 rpm and 207 pound-feet of torque from 1800 rpm to 5000 rpm. The 3.2 quattros use a 3.2-liter V6 that produces 250 horsepower at 6300 rpm and 236 pound-feet of torque from 2500 to 3000 rpm.
The 2.0T has EPA fuel economy ratings of 22 mpg city and 29 highway for the roadster and 23/31 for the coupe. EPA ratings for the 3.2 quattros are 17/24 for roadsters and 18/24 for coupes. Audi recommends premium fuel for both engines.
The Audi 2.0T is available only with Audi's S-tronic direct shift gearbox (DSG), which is a clutchless manual transmission that can be operated as an automatic or as a manual via the gearshift or steering wheel paddles. A six-speed manual transmission is standard on 3.2 quattros, and the S tronic is a $1400 option.
2.0T models come standard with 225/50R17 all-season run-flat or summer performance tires, alloy wheels, limited-slip differential, leather/alcantara upholstery, automatic climate control, tilt-telescope leather-wrapped steering wheel, cruise control, six-way manually adjustable front seats, center console, aluminum interior trim, heated power mirrors, power windows, power locks, remote keyless entry, AM/FM/CD player, digital clock, trip computer, variable intermittent wipers, rear defogger, theft deterrent system, rear spoiler, and fog lights. Coupes add a split-folding rear seat and roadsters get a manual convertible top with a heated glass rear window.
3.2 quattros come with all-wheel drive, 245/45R17 all-season run-flat or summer performance tires, heated 10-way power adjustable front seats, AM/FM radio with six-disc CD changer, steering wheel audio controls, auto-dimming rearview mirror, compass, HomeLink universal garage door opener, rain-sensing wipers, and automatic headlights. On 3.2 quattro roadsters, the convertible top is power operated.
A Premium package for 2.0T models ($2150 coupe, $3050 roadster) adds heated 10-way power adjustable front seats, steering wheel shift paddles, AM/FM radio with six-disc CD changer, auto-dimming rearview mirror, compass, HomeLink Universal garage door opener, rain-sensing wipers, and for roadsters, a power top.
An additional Enhanced Interior package ($1100 coupe, $1250 convertible) delivers Nappa leather-covered seats, a leather-covered interior instrument pod, underseat cargo bins, and, in roadsters, a trunk passthrough with ski sack. Roadsters can also be ordered with Baseball-Optic leather upholstery for $1000.
Audi's Magnetic Ride Suspension, which has base and sport-oriented shock settings, is a $1400 option. An available S line package ($3000) includes 255/35R19 summer performance tires, special interior trim, and more aggressive front and rear styling.
Other stand-alone options include a power top ($900), a navigation system with iPod interface ($1950), 245/40R18 all-season run-flat or summer performance tires ($800), Bluetooth cell-phone connectivity ($450), heated seats ($450), Bose premium audio with Sirius satellite radio ($1000), and bi-xenon adaptive headlights ($800). The iPod interface is available separately for $250, and the satellite radio costs $350 by itself.
Safety equipment includes front airbags, seat-mounted front side airbags that protect the head and thorax, front knee airbags, ABS with electronic brake force distribution and brake assist, traction control, antiskid control, active head restraints, and a tire-pressure monitor. Roadsters have rollover bars mounted behind the seats, and coupes have LATCH-style rear seat child seat anchors. Rear obstacle detection is a $350 option.
The standard warranty is four years or 50,000 miles with no-charge first scheduled maintenance.
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