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Audi’s coupe de grâce

<p>Regular readers know we like to give a little background into a new model before jumping into boring stuff like pricing and features.</p>

Revamped TT better than ever


Regular readers know we like to give a little background into a new model before jumping into boring stuff like pricing and features.





This week, it's no exception.





The original Audi TT was the automotive equivalent of Hollywood-style post-baby bump photos. It was like, "Hey, look at us: We've been eating for two for a while, but now we're hot again." It was like Katie Holmes or Angelina Jolie on the cover of every magazine. It put the company on the map again, and Audi sold every TT it could make.





Part of the reason was that before the TT arrived, carmakers across the globe were still stuck with '90s jellybean styling. The little bathtub-styled coupe came along and showed the world that good design is not only achievable in a modern design - it's accessible to everyone. Because, under its skin, the original TT coupe was basically a refined Volkswagen Golf. Not the worst base by any stretch, but certainly not the most sporting.





The new TT has been completely revamped to address the main knock against the previous generation: It needs to be sportier. To give an indication of how far Audi went, the latest TT's structure is actually half aluminum and half steel. From the doors back, the coupe is steel and the rest is aluminum, giving the car an incredible balance. It's probably the best-tuned, front-engine, front-wheel-drive car this reporter has experienced. It should make any enthusiast happy.





But for everyone else, the things that made the original a hit are still there.





Standard fare includes 17-inch alloy wheels, anti-theft system, alcantara/leather sport seats, aluminum interior trim, Audi "Concert" sound system, automatic climate control, driver information system, heated exterior mirrors, heated front seats, retractable rear spoiler, cruise control, dual front airbags, dual side airbags, dual curtain airbags, tire pressure monitoring system, keyless entry and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.





Also standard is Audi's amazing DSG gearbox, which is a manual transmission with two clutches ... but no clutch pedal. It allows for fully automatic operation or a shift-it-yourself mode for added fun. But probably the coolest thing is that when it shifts gears, the engine emits a little bark out the exhaust pipe.





















2008 Audi TT Coupe


  • Type: Mid-size 2+2-passenger coupe FWD

  • Price: $46,900

  • Engine: 2.0L L4 DOHC

  • HP: 200 @ 5,100 rpm

  • Torque: 207 @ 1,800 – 5,000 rpm



Highlights:



  • Image



  • Performance



  • Lineage



  • Practicality



 
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