Nearly 15 years after the launch of the original TT roadster in 1998, Audi has officially unveiled the all-new 2015 TT roadster at the 2014 Paris Motor Show. The TT has always been a niche vehicle for the Four Rings, but it serves a special purpose in the lineup as a vehicle that aims to provide a pure driving experience, with the first generation of the TT not offering a manual transmission until 2003. In fact, some would say that true automotive icons don’t happen as often as they should, but the Audi TT is certainly one of them.
Audi is touting that the 2015 TT Roadster is the most refined iteration of the model to date. It’s 0.8 inches shorter than its predecessor, although the body has been reworked to provide more room inside, and a wider exterior stance.
Powering the 2015 TT Roadster are a choice of two turbocharged four-cylinder engines: a TFSI (gasoline) and TDI (diesel) — both sporting a 2.0L displacement. Output ranges from 230 hp in the base TT Roadster, to a more powerful 310 hp for the TTS Roadster. The 2.0L TDI, meanwhile, is rated at 184 hp and an incredible 280 pound-feet of torque.
Quattro all wheel drive is standard on the TTS Roadster, and optional on the TT. The system has been completely reworked and during regular driving, its electrohydraulic multi-plate clutch optimally distributes the drive torque between the front and rear axle, depending on driving conditions, road characteristics, and the style of driving. The chassis has also been remastered, with the utilization of more aluminum to save weight and provide a better driving experience. In dropping the weight, engineers even went as far as to ensure the finished aluminum wheels weigh only 19.2 pounds (8.7 kg) each.
The exterior wears Audi’s new corporate styling, and the rear looks very similar to its predecessor. Overall, the lines flow very well, and the wider stance makes the once-cute TT looks more menacing to the casual onlooker.
On the inside, the TT Roadster sports the same cabin as the 2015 TT Coupe, with the most prominent feature being an all-new virtual cockpit. The new interface combines six hard buttons along with MMI navigation and MMI touch, a touchpad that rests on the rotary push-button. It can be used to scroll through lists, zoom in on maps, and enter characters. The biggest change is the switch to a fully-digital gauge cluster, which features several views: the traditional view offers the speedometer and tachometer, while the infotainment view focuses more on navigation, and media. The TTS has an exclusive mode that features a larger tachometer suited for more spirited driving styles.
Look for more coverage of the redesigned TT and TTS Roadster this week during the Paris Motor Show, and stay tuned for pricing and availability of the new Roadster.