Many call Audi’s latest TT coupe a miniaturised version of the German carmaker’s R8 supercar and though it may be smaller, let's make one thing clear – this is one stylish car that should be respected and not trifled with.
The Audi TT simply looks like it wants to hug the floor thanks to the wide stance, a low roofline and the lack of overhangs.
But most significant is the styling, which clearly states where it’s genetic inheritance comes from, thanks to the creases on the bodywork and the plethora of slats at the front – it’s just unmistakably from the R8.
Although the two cars share certain similarities, they are ultimately different species and if the R8 were a big burly powerful bear, then the TT would be the little wolverine – compact, stocky, muscular and visceral when provoked.
The new TT marks a big departure from its curvaceously cute predecessors with large headlights, who damsels found simply adorable – well that ends here, with the TT’s sharp new looks in the headlights, bonnet creases and that gaping front unified grille.
Getting into the newly stylised TT will require some finesse when entering, but more importantly, this is where the ladies in skirts will need to be skilfully elegant when taking a seat.
We love how the blacked-out cabin seems Spartan and clean with its dark leather-Alcantara combination and brushed aluminium accents that help hide the lack of space that a two-plus-two seating arrangement would usually provide.
To add to its simplicity was the way the climate controls have been integrated into the circular vents as well as how the buttons have been intuitively arranged to be a simple poke away.
With the foot on the brake, pressing the Push-Start button not only brings the 2.0-litre turbocharged engine to life, but the dark LCD instrument cluster, or the Virtual Cockpit in Audi-speak, as well.
There’s 225bhp and 370Nm on tap, that’s good for 0-100kph sprint time of 5.9 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 250kph.
Rolling off from standstill, it should already register that the TT’s ride is a stiff one with the 18-inch wheels with 245/40 series tyres that simply blitze the senses by transmitting copious amounts of road surface information.
Our test units came with the Audi drive select that includes five driving modes of Auto, Comfort, Dynamic, Efficiency and Individual.
Cutting straight to the chase, we preferred having the TT in dynamic mode most of the time, not because we were hooked on the way it squished us into the seat’s back rest (ok, maybe a little), but it felt like the car was more akin to the setting.
Having it in efficiency mode is ideal when in heavy traffic with its start-stop function for fuel saving purposes while one looks to the moment where there’s some clear roads to burn it all away.
In comfort mode, the car seemed unnatural, sluggish, clumsy – simply unbecoming of what a sports car should be.
As for individual mode, it just meant that the engine/gearbox, steering and engine note are adjustable to the driver’s liking, but we were more than happy to keep it in dynamic mode, which makes the car feel more responsive and exciting.
Punching the throttle gets the TT going like a bat out of hell with plenty of grip around the corners and stopping power is right on the money with little prospects of fade when the brakes have been abused.
Gearshifts are ultra quick and there’s almost no lag with the rev counter swinging towards the red line as the driver gets immersed in a pool of engine roar that excites the senses.
It’ll simply hold the line when flinging the TT around corners, with an immense amount of grip and if one does go overboard, the intrusion of electronic safety programmes is almost unnoticeable.
Who cares about ride comfort, the sheer grip and accelerative performance is something that would have most grinning with joy and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
When the car is turned off, a tune plays with a fade-out of heartbeats, which brings about a mild disappointment that the drive has come to an end. This somehow gives the mind a little whisper of a question – one more outing?
With a powerful engine, quick-shifting gearbox and a stiff suspension to name a few, it was simply difficult to relinquish the keys when the time was up.
At RM284,900 on-the-road with GST without insurance, it’s hard to ignore the way the TT impacts the senses yet have the ability to be docile and easily driveable.
But if budding owners are looking for something predominantly sane then the TT is definitely not the ideal choice and would rather suit someone who’s been to the naughty side of driving to truly enjoy the car’s offerings.
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