The Audi TT, a vehicle that represents a golden generation at Audi, is bidding a chronic farewell. The TT RS exited the level within the U.S. marketplace on the finish of the 2022 mannequin yr with the Heritage Version, and now in Europe, the TT RS Iconic Version is an identical homage to the historical past of the unique coupe. And that’s the reason why it is price looking on the previous generations ahead of we get to the main points of this newest and arguably maximum competent iteration of the TT thus far.
It was once 1995 when the TT theory (above) wowed the unsuspecting target market on the Frankfurt auto display. Extraordinarily puristic and geometric, it was once a contemporary interpretation of a Bauhaus aesthetic. The manufacturing mannequin got here to marketplace simplest 3 years later (no longer until the 2000 mannequin yr within the U.S.), remarkably trustworthy to the display vehicle and nonetheless oozing concept-car vibes. The primary, stylistically purest TT was once introduced as a coupe and a convertible. A 225-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter paired with all-wheel power arrived in its 2nd U.S. mannequin yr as the tip providing, later exceeded by way of a three.2-liter narrow-angle V-6, to be had with a handbook or a dual-clutch transmission that had simply introduced within the Golfing R32.
The second one-gen TT coupes and convertibles that arrived stateside for 2007 had been a bit of much less minimalist in design. With this mannequin, then again, Audi introduced again a five-cylinder engine, a transfer that fired up emblem aficionados. Not like Audi’s unique five-banger that debuted in 1976, this one was once derived from the EA113 4. It was once an in depth relative of the U.S.-market inline-five that powered the Golfing and different fashions, however it was once turbocharged and produced two times the output.
The present, third-generation TT returned to its roots with razor-sharp traces and a extra carrying look. Ferdinand Piëch himself despatched the designers again to the planning stage, when—upon environment his eyes on an evolutionary proposal—he informed them, “That’s not easy methods to deal with an icon.” The brand new TT got here to marketplace in 2014 once more as a coupe and a convertible; crossover and four-door Sportback variations at the beginning envisioned had been brushed aside, and the TT has carried ahead with none main adjustments to at the present time.
For the Iconic Version, simply 100 of which shall be constructed, Audi Recreation determined to not dive too deeply into the design heritage of the TT; that may have entailed a distinct way to wheel design and décor each inside and outside. Whilst the unique TT was once outlined by way of its use of aluminum trim, this one displays recent common notions of sportiness with black wheels and carbon-fiber appliqués.
The menacing attraction of the TT RS Iconic Version is simple. It sits low to the bottom, with an competitive stance, its 20-inch alloys shod with 255/30 rubber. All are completed in Nardo Gray, and the entrance finish is accentuated by way of canards, blades, and a splitter; the rear finish is fitted with an enormous wing, and the not obligatory OLED hind lights supply a futuristic contact. This mannequin proves that the third-gen TT’s design has elderly in reality neatly.
You step right into a cockpit that hasn’t modified a lot through the years and remains to be very suave and driver-oriented. The multimedia interface turns out a bit of dated simplest as a result of Audi has moved directly to different enter methods in its fresh fashions, however this one works neatly. And the combination of the local weather controls into the central air vents nonetheless turns out like genius. This special-edition model options nappa leather-based and Alcantara in a two-tone black and grey with yellow distinction sewing in a honeycomb development.
The turbocharged 2.5-liter inline-five—it way back was an absolutely aluminum engine although it began lifestyles with an iron block—fires up with a bellow. The Ecu TT RS does not sound reasonably as excellent because the American one did as a result of it’s saddled with a compulsory particulate filter out, however the roar remains to be unmistakable each outside and inside the auto. The seven-speed dual-clutch automated works like a attraction, offering near-seamless or intentionally pronounced shifts, relying on riding mode and throttle enter. The handbook transmission has way back disappeared within the TT RS—it was once to be had simplest within the previous-model era—which we see as a regrettable omit.
Making the similar 394 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque as in the usual TT RS, the aggressive-sounding inline-five is amazingly pleasant to the bold motive force. Although it options just a unmarried turbocharger, the spice up comes on briefly sufficient—and it’s relentless. We think 60 mph to be inside succeed in in simply over 3 seconds from leisure, and the top-speed governor is ready at 174 mph. We did not get close to that determine this time round, however you’ll succeed in triple-digit speeds with improbable ease and a way of safety that gifts itself as a continuing danger for your motive force’s license.
With its low heart of gravity, efficiency tires, a claimed curb weight of simply 3252 kilos, and all-wheel power, the TT RS effectively explores the outer limits of the VW Team’s ubiquitous MQB platform. We drove it on rapid nation roads, no longer on a racetrack, and had been nonetheless charmed by way of its general precision and the well weighted steerage. The adaptive dampers supply a perfect unfold between a company, exhausting personality suited for rapid riding on easy asphalt and a extra passenger-friendly, compliant environment for much less competitive riding. The rear wing successfully offsets the aerodynamic demanding situations of the TT’s sloping tail, one thing that were given the first-gen TT into hassle ahead of Audi added a compulsory rear spoiler.
The present TT RS has been in manufacturing for 6 years now, and we’re glad to document that it nonetheless holds up reasonably neatly in opposition to competition such because the BMW M240i and the Toyota Supra, it does not really feel hopelessly outclassed by way of a Porsche 718 Cayman, and it can most likely kick less expensive however more recent entries just like the Nissan Z to the curb. However for the reason that TT RS isn’t lengthy for this global, Audi has spared itself the price of upgrading it with the newest, maximum refined iterations of the engine and chassis-control methods to be had within the RS3.
Audi has designed the TT RS Iconic Version to develop into a collector’s merchandise, and that is the reason why it’s fitted no longer simply with a plethora of bespoke choices but additionally with a plaque that states no longer simplest that it’s one among 100 gadgets, but additionally precisely which one. Every other vital indicator is its worth: It is available in at a whopping 113,050 euros, or kind of $120,000, some 41,000 euros above a regular TT RS in Germany. None will come to the U.S. And that’s the reason a disgrace.
2023 Audi TT RS Iconic Version
Car Kind: front-engine, all-wheel-drive, 2+2-passenger, 2-door coupe
Base: $120,000 (Germany)
turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 20-valve inline-5, aluminum block and head, direct gas injection
Displacement: 151 in3, 2480 cm3
Energy: 394 hp @ 7000 rpm
Torque: 354 lb-ft @ 1700 rpm
7-speed dual-clutch automated
Wheelbase: 98.6 in
Duration: 165.0 in
Width: 72.1 in
Top: 52.9 in
Passenger Quantity: 74 toes3
Shipment Quantity: 12 toes3
Curb Weight (C/D est): 3250 lb
PERFORMANCE (C/D EST)
60 mph: 3.3 sec
100 mph: 8.5 sec
1/4-Mile: 11.8 sec
Best Pace: 174 mph
EPA FUEL ECONOMY (C/D EST)
Mixed/Town/Freeway: 23/20/29 mpg
C/D TESTING EXPLAINED
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