Sunday, November 22, 2009

Audi TT Roadster: Size Has Gone Up, Top Goes Down

After rolling out the latest version of its TT Coupe, Audi unveiled the new TT Roadster, with a new exterior, interior, chassis, and powertrain.

The new roadster, like its hardtop counterpart, is bigger than the last one -- about five inches longer and three inches wider.

One key change is the addition of Audi's new corporate face - aggressive headlights and a large grille.

Audi says it made a conscious decision to keep a manually operated cloth roof for the new TT Roadster.

The soft top concept "fits in perfectly with the philosophy of puristic open-top motoring and also offers a number of benefits over a folding steel hard top," the automaker said.

Audi says the new roof keeps weight to a minimum and lowers the center of gravity.

The car is available with a four- or six-cylinder engine.

The entry-level turbocharged four-cylinder engine delivers 200 horsepower between 5100 rpm and 6000 rpm, while cranking out 207 pound-feet of torque from a low 1800 rpm, all the way up to 5000 rpm. This model is available with front-wheel-drive only.

The more powerful V6 mill serves up 250hp at 6300 rpm and 236 pound-feet of torque in the 2500 to 3000 rpm range.

The engine lets the TT hit 62 mph in 5.7 seconds via its Quattro all-wheel-drive.

The car has a spoiler that deploys at 75 mph.

The interior of the car is also vastly different, bringing the TT in line with the standards set by Audi's more expensive models.

Audi's interiors are among the best in the business, and this one falls right in line with that.

The high-tech Audi magnetic ride damper system is available as an option.

In this system, tiny magnetic particles circulate in the oil inside the shock absorbers. When a voltage is applied to them, they alter the damping characteristics within milliseconds.

This adaptive system simultaneously ensures high levels of ride comfort and thoroughly sporty dynamism, according to the specific driving scenario and the preferences of the driver.
Our tester was priced at slightly over $41,000.

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