The Auto Trader expert verdict: ★★★★★ ★★★★★ 4.5
Available new from £34,770
The TT is an excellent choice for someone that wants a great quality convertible sports car. It offers an engaging driving experience with a touch more practicality than some of its rivals. Some of these rivals are more focused to drive, but many people will prefer the everyday usability of the TT, and it’s still more than capable of putting a smile on your face.
Reasons to buy
- Eye-catching looks
- Good to drive with punchy engines
- Great quality interior
At a glance
Running costs for a Audi TT
Rivals for the Audi TT Roadster include premium cars like Porsche’s 718 Boxster, BMW’s Z4 and the Mercedes-Benz SLC. Although it slightly depends which version you opt for, overall the purchase price for the Audi is very competitive, and it should have rock solid resale values as well. The deletion of a diesel option in the TT line-up means fuel costs might be higher than they used to be, but the petrol engines are pretty good on fuel considering their performance levels.
Reliability of a Audi TT
Despite a strong reputation for quality, Audi’s reliability has not been the best in recent years. In fact, it’s been pretty poor. The 2018 and 2019 JD Power Vehicle Dependability Studies put Audi third from bottom when ranking all the main manufacturers, although that's one place higher than the 2017 study. Audi is similarly low-ranked in Warranty Direct’s Reliability Index, which looks at the reliability of older, out-of-warranty cars. Should anything go wrong with your TT, Audi offers a three-year, 60,000-mile warranty, which is pretty standard for this type or car.
Safety for a Audi TT
The latest TT is largely the same as the car that scored a disappointing four stars out of five in tests by safety organisation Euro NCAP back in 2015. In fairness, the tests had just been made harder when it was assessed, but standards have improved again since then. Some modern technologies that you would expect from newer cars, such as automatic emergency braking, aren’t available, and lane assist is only available as an option. Still, there are front and side airbags and two Isofix child seat mounting points in the rear seats.
How comfortable is the Audi TT
With Audi maintaining a superb reputation for interior quality, changes to the revamped TT are, again, pretty minimal, which means very high quality materials, and excellent fit and finish. Sports seats are standard, with all models getting part or full-leather upholstery, and they’re nicely supportive while being comfortable for longer journeys.
All cars come with a 12.3-inch display in front of the driver, rather than traditional instruments or a central screen. This displays both driving information and infotainment, which is controlled either from the wheel or by a dial and buttons next to the gearstick. It’s certainly cool to look at, and works well once you get to know it, but be prepared to take a bit of time to figure out how to navigate your way around the interface. The roof is raised and lowered using a switch between the seats.
Unlike the TT Coupe, the Roadster is a strict two-seater, with the coupe’s rear seats making way for the folding roof storage. So if you’ve got more than one friend to carry around, the Roadster isn’t for you. The folded away roof also slightly reduces the amount of boot space available, but it’s only slightly smaller than the Coupe and therefore a pretty decent size compared to rivals. Because there are no rear seats, you can’t fold them down for extra space, so what’s there is your lot. That’s true of other two-seat convertibles too, but it’s worth knowing if you might need to transport larger items.
Rear visibility with the roof up isn’t brilliant, but again that’s typical of soft-top cars. There’s a cup holder in the centre and another one under the armrest, as well as shallow door pockets and a cubbyhole in front of the gearstick. There’s also a lockable storage space between the seats.
The TT isn’t just about cute looks. It also has proper dynamic ability, with engineering that’s unchanged in the revamped version. With strong grip, taut body control and fast, predictable reactions from the steering, gearshift and throttle, the TT feels excitingly nimble in a set of bends. And that’s the front-wheel-drive cars. Some versions are available with four-wheel drive (and a twin-clutch gearbox), giving you even more traction out of bends. But to be honest, they’re no more enjoyable to drive, and we’d save the extra cash they cost unless you really need the extra grip.
All the conventional TTs also deliver a ride that’s impressively slick and smooth, and the lowered sports suspension that’s standard on S line, Black Edition and Vorsprung models manages to increase the stiffness and cornering ability while stopping short of being crashy over rough surfaces. Taking the roof away doesn’t noticeably affect the quality of handling. You’d probably lose a bit of time around a racetrack due to a small decrease in torsional stiffness and extra weight, compared to the coupe. But that’s offset by the extra drama of the wind in your hair and the noise from the exhaust.
Features of the Audi TT
Audi isn’t renowned for including a lot of features as standard in its cars, but the offerings in the TT aren’t too bad. The Roadster comes with an electrically-folding soft black roof that deploys or stows away in ten seconds at speeds up to 31mph. When down, it shows off roll over bars behind the driver and passenger.
There are four trim levels, starting with the Sport which features LED daytime running lights and xenon headlights and 18-inch alloy wheels, as well as heated seats with an Alcantara and leather upholstery, and keyless start.
The next step up is the S line, which comes with brighter LED headlights and 19-inch wheels, as well as a sportier bodykit. The Black Edition comes with 20-inch black alloy wheels and, as the name suggests, lots of black elements on the bodywork, while the top-end Vorsprung model has clever Matrix LED headlights that maintain full beam without dazzling oncoming traffic. It also features a Bang & Olufsen sound system and some extra driver assistance systems.
There are also two sportier and hardcore versions of the TT Roadster: the TTS and the TT RS.
Power for a Audi TT
The standard version of the TT comes with a choice of two petrol engines (there’s no diesel option), which have more power than before. Both are 2.0-litre turbocharged units, with one badged as the 40 TFSI and the other as the 45 TFSI. The former has 197 horsepower, which might not sound a lot, but it’s enough for the TT to hit 62mph in 6.9 seconds. If you want a bit more zip, the 45 TFSI has 245 horsepower and will hit 62mph in 5.9 seconds. It’s an engine that’s often used in performance cars from Audi’s parent company, the Volkswagen Group, and it’s a cracker with plenty of grunt and smooth delivery that means punch whenever you need it.
Both engines come with a seven-speed, twin-clutch automatic gearbox that can run in full auto mode or manually via the gearstick or paddles behind the wheel. The 45 is also available with a six-speed manual gearbox if you prefer the extra involvement of a clutch pedal, and can also come with all-wheel drive, which is labelled by Audi as Quattro.