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Geneva Motor Show - Audi News

March 6th, 2008


Geneva Motor Show 2008 Audi News

At the 2008 Geneva Motor Show, Audi has presented a number of new production vehicles, adding to its already-impressive line-up. The Q7 V12 TDI and not one, but three new TT versions were presented, including Audi’s first TT model with a TDI engine. Details of the vehicles presented in Geneva follows.

The New Audi Q7 V12 TDI quattro

The Ultimate High-Performance SUV

Audi is taking TDI technology to a whole new level with the Audi Q7 V12 TDI quattro, the most powerful diesel-powered passenger vehicle in its class. The V12 engine under the hood generates 368 kW (500 hp) of power and 1,000 Nm (757.56 lb-ft) of torque from six litres of displacement, enabling the big SUV to perform like a sportscar. The new Audi Q7 V12 TDI quattro represents a combination of superior power and efficient fuel consumption, an Audi hallmark. With its sporty chassis, modified body and exclusive equipment, the Audi Q7 V12 TDI quattro is the consummate high-performance SUV. quattro GmbH, a wholly owned Audi subsidiary, is responsible for production and development of the vehicle. Series production of the Audi Q7 V12 TDI will begin this year.

Audi, the inventor of TDI technology, is penning a new chapter in the history of diesel engines with the Audi Q7 V12 TDI quattro. The world’s first V12 diesel engine in a series-production vehicle moves this big, high-performance SUV with supreme confidence and composure. On demand, the six-litre engine catapults the Audi Q7 from zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 5.5 seconds like a top-class sportscar. Speed is electronically capped at 250 km/h (155.34 mph).

The 12-cylinder diesel engine is no less impressive when it comes to fuel consumption. On average, it requires just 11.9 litres of fuel per 100 km
(19.77 mpg), a surprisingly good figure in light of the strength of the engine. The six-litre TDI uses significantly less fuel than any competing gasoline engine in the high-performance SUV sector; thanks to efficient combustion and the complex exhaust emission control system, the Audi Q7 V12 TDI quattro already complies with future emissions standards.

Totally refined, high-tech engine

The V12 TDI captivates its drivers with sheer inexhaustible power and highly cultivated operation – the subtle engine sound takes on a voluminous, strong note when the throttle is open. The six-litre unit is a member of the modern family of Audi V engines, all of which have center-to-center spacing of 90 millimetres
(3.54 inches) between cylinders. Instead of the usual 90 degrees, however, its cylinder angle measures 60 degrees. This method of construction is ideal for the V12 as it prohibits any undesirable free inertial forces and moments of inertia.

Another factor contributing to the vehicle’s smooth running characteristics is the high rigidity of the crankcase. Made of cast vermicular graphite, it is approximately 15 percent lighter than conventional gray iron. The six-litre unit is extremely compact at just 684 millimetres (26.93 inches) in length. The crankshaft is held in place by a rigid main bearing bracket. The V12 TDI’s engine capacity of 5,934 cc is derived from a bore measurement of 83.0 millimetres (3.27 inches) and a stroke of 91.4 millimetres (3.60 inches), just as in the 3.0 TDI.

The aluminium cylinder heads consist of three elements: the lower section where the intake and escape channels are integrated, the upper section which guides the flow of oil and a reinforced ladder frame containing the two camshafts driven by two simplex chains on the back of the engine. The valves are actuated by low-friction roller cam followers. Map-controlled flaps in the intake channels cause the induced air to swirl. This improves combustion, thus reducing emissions and enhancing performance.

High pressure: 2,000 bar in the common rail system

The common rail injection system, with high-pressure pumps driven by chains, can create pressure of up to 2,000 bar. The high pressure level permits intensive mixture formation of the fuel in the combustion chamber, thereby facilitating especially smooth, acoustically satisfying combustion. Shifting very rapidly and precisely, the eight-hole injectors working on the piezo principle can deliver up to five injections per combustion cycle.

Two turbochargers are positioned on the exterior of the V engine, each supplied with a cylinder bank. Thanks to their adjustable guide vane geometry, they respond quickly even at low engine speeds and reach high levels of efficiency, applying a relative maximum boost pressure of 1.6 bar. Two large charged air coolers reduce the temperature of the compressed air, paving the way for the high output of 500 hp.

Outstanding performance paired with exceptional efficiency

The six-litre TDI unit is further impressive proof of the technological leadership embodied in Audi’s “Vorsprung durch Technik” slogan. Back in 1989, the brand with the four rings put the TDI principle into series production and has been continually advancing it ever since at the forefront of the field. The most powerful diesel in its class generates an extremely high specific torque of 169 Nm
(124.64 lb-ft) per litre of capacity; 1,000 Nm (757.56 lb-ft) is available at a range of 1,750 to 3,250 rpm. Specific power output is 62.0 kW (84.3 hp) – equivalent to that of a sportscar.

The new V12 TDI in the Audi Q7 is closely related to the engine that twice powered the Audi R10 TDI racing car to overall victory in the Le Mans 24 Hours – a 5.5-litre V12 that delivers approximately 480 kW (over 650 hp).

The Audi Q7 V12 TDI quattro’s powerful engine torque flows through a rapidly and gently shifting six-speed tiptronic that was specially designed for the six-litre diesel engine’s immense torque. The driver can shift the gears of the automatic transmission either with the selector lever or manually with the standard chromed shift paddles on the three-spoke steering wheel.

The quattro drive distributes the power to the front and back wheels in a 40:60 ratio – giving the vehicle a sporty, rear-focused driving style that guarantees maximum agility and driving enjoyment. When needed, the inter-axle differential transfers most of the power to the axle with better traction. Great care has also been devoted to reinforcing all key components in the quattro driveline.

High tech from Audi: The aluminium chassis

The chassis of the Audi Q7 V12 TDI quattro is a marvel of high-tech construction. Elaborate double wishbones guide the front and rear wheels; the axle components are made primarily of aluminium. Thanks to the extreme precision and directness of the servotronic steering, the driver remains in close contact with the road. This is where the handling characteristics, driving safety and comfort of the high-performance SUV set new standards. With maximum ground clearance of 205 millimetres (8.07 inches), the Audi Q7 V12 TDI quattro also proves itself easily capable of handling the demands of rough terrain.

The adaptive air suspension works with sporty new tuning. In combination with electronically controlled shock absorbers incorporating dynamic roll stabilization, the air suspension can be adjusted in three zones ranging from extremely comfortable to highly dynamic. The driver can also adjust ground clearance in five stages via this system and lower the tail end by 71 millimetres (2.80 inches) for comfortable loading.

Standard carbon-fiber ceramic brakes

The ultimate high-performance SUV from Audi takes to the road on sporty 10-spoke wheels of 20 inches in diametre. Alternatively, the wheels are also available in a 20-spoke design or as 21-inch variants in three different designs. Behind the large wheels is a powerful 20-inch brake system. Made of ceramic reinforced with carbon fiber, the internally ventilated disks are notable for their low weight, robust performance and minimum wear. The front disks are gripped by eight-piston brake calipers, while the rear brakes function with four pistons each. The calipers are titanium gray and the front ones bear the “Audi ceramic” logo.

The visual styling of the Audi Q7 V12 TDI quattro gives it an unmistakable look. Daytime running lights consisting of twelve white LEDs per headlight announce the vehicle’s presence even at a distance. They are located on the upper edge of the air intake slots, replacing the turn signals that were moved to the bi-xenon headlights. Further honing the vehicle’s profile is a chromed grid in the single-frame radiator grill and a shiny underbody protector made of stainless steel. The newly designed bumper groups the side air intake slots into large units.

When viewed from the side, both the 20-inch wheels and the matt aluminium caps on the exterior mirrors catch the eye. The wheel arches have been widened a total of 26 millimetres (1.02 inches) at the front and 30 millimetres (1.18 inches) at the rear; the lower edges of the doors flaunt striking new moldings. The windows are framed by matt aluminium cover strips, the roof rails sport the same look. The taillights are set in a dark-colored background, while the newly designed bumper incorporates two large, oval exhaust tailpipes. At the rear, the underbody protector is also made from stainless steel. A metallic or pearl effect finish comes standard.

Sophisticated: Highlights on board the Audi Q7 V12 TDI

In the interior of the most powerful Audi Q7, passengers will find shiny door sill trim with aluminium inserts and velours carpet. Carbon covers and the aluminium-look selector lever give the center tunnel a high-tech ambience, exclusive wood trim is available as an option. The buttons of the MMI operating system, which has proven a superior concept in numerous independent tests, gleam in silver, the air vents in aluminium, the pedals and footrest in stainless steel. On the speedometre, the range extends up to 310 km/h (192.63 mph).

Verano leather covers the electrically adjustable sport seats, the deluxe center armrest and the armrests in the doors are upholstered with leather as well. The front and rear seats can be heated; a special lighting package softly illuminates the interior.

Also included in the luxurious standard specification are the leather package, leather multi-function sports steering wheel, black roof lining, folding exterior mirrors, DVD navigation system, Bose Surround Sound system with CD changer, Bluetooth mobile phone preparation, alarm system and tire pressure monitoring system. The tailgate opens and closes electronically. Partially overlapping the D-pillars, it gives the vehicle a brawny rear body.

There are four optional high-tech assistance systems for the Audi Q7 V12 TDI quattro: The adaptive cruise control system, Audi lane assist and Audi side assist aid the driver in maintaining the proper distance to the vehicle ahead, staying in lane and changing lane, while Audi parking system advanced incorporates a camera for a clear view behind the vehicle.

The optional Audi music interface offers a convenient iPod interface. Available on request, the B&O Advanced Sound System creates an unparalleled acoustic experience. An even more comfortable interior can be achieved with the advanced leather package that includes, among other things, exclusive leather covering of the instrument panel and center console.

The large glass roof open sky system is available to crown the spacious interior – optionally with four, five, six or seven variable seats – as is a rail system for the cargo area of up to 2,035 litres in size.

Presales of the Audi Q7 V12 TDI will begin in the second half of 2008. The most powerful diesel vehicle in its class is the exclusive top-of-the-line model in the Q7 range.

Built for fun at the wheel-The Audi TTS

Audi is taking the wraps off a new sports car – the Audi TTS, the top of the TT model line. It will be coming to dealer showrooms in the early summer. Under its hood lies a two-litre TFSI high-performance engine delivering a mighty 200 kW (272 hp). This intense power propels the TTS Coupe with S tronic to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) from a standstill in just 5.2 seconds and on to a governor-limited top speed of 250 km/h (155.34 mph). The Audi TTS is available as both a 2 + 2-seater coupe and as a roadster.

Designed to appeal to a young and dynamic clientele, the TTS represents the Audi brand's Vorsprung durch Technik (“advancement through technology”) in its very latest form. The TFSI engine in the TTS takes the two Audi technologies of gasoline direct injection and turbocharging and blends them to form a perfect partnership. Aside from its output of 200 kW (272 hp), it is its peak torque of
350 Nm (258.15 lb-ft), which is constantly on tap between 2,500 and 5,000 rpm, that makes the compact and lightweight four-cylinder unit so impressive.

Compared to the engine it was derived from, the two-litre power unit has been reengineered and strengthened in a number of key areas to ready it for operation in the TTS. Thanks to its excellent efficiency, the sporty-sounding TFSI has an average fuel consumption of just 8.0 litres of fuel per 100 kilometres
(29.40 mpg) in the Coupe when partnered by the six-speed manual transmission, while the figure for the roadster averages 8.2 l/100 km (28.68 mpg). These figures are improved to 7.9 and 8.0 l/100 km (29.77 and 29.40 mpg), respectively, if the optional S tronic dual-clutch transmission is fitted.

S tronic, which deploys two clutches, is capable of performing extremely quick gear shifts at high engine loads and rev speeds; consequently, the time taken to sprint from zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) is cut by a further two-tenths of a second in both the Coupe and Roadster. Loss-free transfer of power to the road is the task of the standard quattro permanent all-wheel drive that enables the TTS to accelerate quicker and with greater stability than its rivals. At the heart of this system is a hydraulic multi-plate clutch that works faster than ever thanks to a new pressure reservoir.

The TTS rolls off the production line equipped with yet another high-tech module – the Audi magnetic ride adaptive damping system. This gives the driver the choice of two characteristic settings: “Standard” mode is designed for a well-balanced, comfortable ride, whereas in the “Sport” setting the TTS harnesses all of the potential of its sports suspension – which lowers the body by 10 millimetres (0.39 in.) – to deliver uncompromisingly dynamic handling. Its front suspension is mainly made of aluminium, while the efficient technology of the precision electromechanical steering also helps to improve fuel consumption considerably. The sports car is safely brought to a standstill by the high-performance braking system with its 17-inch discs.

Yet another factor in the supreme performance of the TTS is the hybrid construction of its body. Steel is used at the rear end, while the front and center sections of the body are built from lightweight aluminium. ASF (Audi Space Frame) technology optimizes axle load distribution and reduces the overall weight. The manual Coupe weighs just 1,395 kilograms (3,075.45 lbs), which equates to a power-to-weight ratio of 5.1 kg/hp (11.24 lbs/hp).

Powerful looks: 18-inch wheels plus new headlights

The Audi TTS instantly stands out as the dynamic flagship of the TT model line. The standard 18-inch aluminium wheels are a highlight of the exterior design, as are the headlights, comprising newly designed bi-xenon units with LED daytime running lights. Inside, passengers are welcomed by deep-set sports seats trimmed in a mixture of leather and Alcantara, with Silk Nappa leather seat upholstery in four different color combinations available as an option. The gray instrument panel as well as the multifunctional steering wheel add further styling touches.

The TTS Roadster comes with an electrohydraulic drive for the soft top, a power wind deflector, plus, for added practicality, a load-through facility. The rear seats in the Coupe have a split-folding design, allowing luggage capacity to be increased from 290 to 700 litres (10.24 to 24.72 cubic ft.). The hard-top TTS is priced at 44,900 euros and the convertible version at 47,750 euros.

The unveiling of the TTS also marks something of an anniversary for Audi: It was 10 years ago that the TT Coupe first took to the road, swiftly acquiring the status of design icon. And the TT has stayed firmly in the fast lane ever since.

The Drivetrain

The TFSI engine fitted in the TTS summons its power from a displacement of 1984 cc, and blends two separate Audi technologies – gasoline direct injection and turbocharging – to form a partnership that is perfect for a sports car. It is with good reason that an international jury of motoring journalists has crowned the two-litre four-cylinder power unit "Engine of the Year" three times in succession since 2005.

It is not only the 200 kW (272 hp) of output that makes the TFSI so scintillating, there's its hefty pulling power too – the maximum torque of 350 Nm (258.15 lb-ft) is constantly on tap from 2,500 up to 5,000 rpm. The Coupe with manual transmission takes just 5.4 seconds to race from zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph), while a mere 4.4 seconds are required to speed up from 80 to 120 km/h (49.71 to 74.56 mph) in fourth gear. The Roadster is almost as impressive, recording times of 5.6 and 4.6 seconds respectively for the same two exercises. The electronic limiter calls a halt to this outstanding propulsion at a speed of 250 km/h
(155.34 mph) in both models.

Compared to the engine it was derived from, the two-litre power unit has undergone extensive reengineering and strengthening to ready it for operation in the TTS – overhauled areas include the engine block, the cylinder head, the pistons, the connecting rods and the turbocharger, which can build up as much as 1.2 bar of relative air pressure. The intake and exhaust systems have undergone elaborate honing to allow the refined four-cylinder engine to both breathe freely and generate a powerful, resonant soundtrack. An optimized and highly efficient intercooler lowers the temperature of the compressed air, producing a crucial increase in the quantity of air supplied for combustion.

Thanks to its outstanding efficiency, the TFSI has impressive fuel consumption of 7.9 litres per 100 km (29.77 mpg) in the Coupe when partnered by the S tronic transmission, and just 8.0 l/100 km (29.40 mpg) in the Roadster. The two-litre engine is extremely light, weighing in at 153 kilograms (337.31 lbs). This has considerable benefits for the overall weight of the TTS as well as for the axle load distribution and, consequently, for the vehicle's handling.

High-tech gearshifting: S tronic

Transmission of the engine's power is handled as standard in the TTS by a manual six-speed gearshift with a light-weight magnesium housing. As an alternative, customers can opt for S tronic, which operates using six gears and two clutches positioned one behind the other. At high engine loads and rev speeds, it is capable of shifting in just two-tenths of a second. As a result of this high-speed shift work and its dynamic start-off capabilities, the dual-clutch transmission from Audi shaves a whole two-tenths off the time taken for the sprint from zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in both the Coupe and the Roadster.

S tronic, which likewise boasts excellent efficiency, also allows the driver to shift gears manually using the one-touch lever or by means of paddles on the steering wheel, just like in a racing car. There is also a choice of two automatic operating modes: D and S (which stands for Sport). The clutches also have an adaptive design, enabling the start-off characteristics to be varied – whereas caution is exercised on slippery surfaces, full power can be unleashed at the driver's command when there is firm grip.

The standard-specification quattro permanent all-wheel drive ensures virtually loss-free transfer of the engine's power to the road. With drive power being delivered to all four wheels, the TTS is able to accelerate quicker and more safely than its rivals, delivering dynamism coupled with supreme stability under all conditions.

At the heart of the quattro system is an electronically controlled and hydraulically operated multi-plate clutch, which now works even faster than ever thanks to a new pressure reservoir. If required, the drive force can be redirected almost completely from the front to the rear wheels within a matter of milliseconds. To make allowance for the high torques produced by the TFSI engine in the TTS, the drive train has been reinforced as required.

The Chassis

Audi has opted for a McPherson front suspension with lower triangular wishbones for the TTS. The suspension is largely made of aluminium, thereby reducing the unsprung masses. With a view to increasing rigidity, the subframe is bolted to the body at six points. The sensitive, high-precision power steering is driven electromechanically, a technology that improves fuel consumption by 0.2 litres per 100 km. The characteristics of the steering's power assistance have been adapted to reflect the dynamic nature of the TTS.

The four-link rear suspension offers considerable benefits for vehicle handling, as it is capable of dealing with the longitudinal and lateral forces separately from one another. All of the links are made from high-strength grades of steel, while modified bearings emphasize the taut feel of the TTS. The coil springs and shock absorbers are fitted separately from one another, meaning that they take up little space.

The TTS comes standard with 18-inch cast aluminium wheels that sport the five-arm parallel-spoke S design and are shod with 245/40-size tires. Further wheel variants are optionally available, including a new 19-inch cast aluminium wheel designed by quattro GmbH. The exceptionally dynamic top-of-the-line TT model comes equipped with a high-performance braking system. Large disks are fitted front and rear, with the front disks being internally ventilated too. Inside the black-painted calipers, which bear the TTS emblem at the front, are the sport brake pads. Audi has devised a second, sporty level for the ESP stabilization program which enables controlled drifting.

Audi magnetic ride – crisp and versatile

The TTS rolls off the production line equipped with yet another high-tech solution — the Audi magnetic ride adaptive suspension system. Circulating inside the damper pistons is a special fluid containing minute magnetic particles. When an electrical voltage is applied, the oil's flow properties change the characteristics of the suspension.

Audi magnetic ride works adaptively, meaning that it adjusts automatically to suit the prevailing conditions. The driver can select one of two suspension settings. In “Normal” mode, when oil viscosity is high, the TTS offers a well-balanced, comfortable ride. In the “Sport” setting, meaning low viscosity, the TTS harnesses all of the potential of its sports suspension – which lowers the body by 10 millimetres (0.39 in.) – to deliver uncompromisingly dynamic handling.

The Audi generates non-stop fun at the wheel as it speeds around corners like a go-cart with absolute crispness and precision, seemingly glued to the road. Any body roll is suppressed from the moment the vehicle starts to turn. The steering becomes more responsive and direct, and selective bracing of the wheels makes the self-steering more neutral.

The Body

The superior performance of the TTS can be partly attributed to the technology of its bodywork, whose hybrid construction combines two different types of materials. Steel is used at the rear end, while the front and center sections of the body are built from lightweight aluminium.

Audi first developed this principle, known as the Audi Space Frame (ASF), in the early 1990s, triggering a revolution in body manufacturing. Extruded sections, pressure die-castings and load-bearing aluminium panels together form a light, rigid and extremely safe structure. On the Coupe, the side sections and the roof are laser welded together, producing a precision seamless joint — another clear indication of how Audi strives for perfection when building its cars.

The construction of the TTS has the added major benefit of optimizing distribution of the axle loads and reducing the vehicle's total weight. The Coupe's body weighs a mere 206 kilograms (454.15 lbs), of which 140 kg (308.65 lbs) is aluminium and 66 kg (145.51 lbs) steel. In the case of the TTS Roadster, whose body incorporates special reinforcements, the figure is 251 kilograms (553.36 lbs). All in all, the manual version of the Coupe weighs in at just 1,395 kilograms (3,075.45 lbs), equating to a power-to-weight ratio of 5.1 kilograms (11.24 lbs) per hp. The Roadster's weight of 1,455 kilograms (3,207.73 lbs), meanwhile, corresponds to a ratio of 5.4 kg/hp (11.90 lbs/hp).

The Audi TTS instantly stands out as the dynamic flagship of the TT model line. One of the design highlights is undoubtedly the headlights – newly designed bi-xenon units featuring a horizontal strip of white LEDs that serve as daytime running lights. The single-frame grill in a platinum gray finish is embellished with slender chrome strips, while large air intakes in the restyled front apron add to the striking look.

When viewed in profile, it is not only the large 18-inch wheels that stand out; the widened, deeper door sills are equally eye-catching. A muscular rear bumper, a gray-colored diffusor trim, plus two sets of twin tailpipes protruding from the left and the right inject the vehicle's tail with a sporty character all of its own. The spoiler on the TTS extends automatically when the speed reaches 120 km/h
(74.56 mph) and retracts again when it drops back to 80 km/h (49.71 mph).

Both the Coupe and the Roadster measure 4,198 millimetres (13.77 ft) long and 1,842 mm (6.04 ft) wide; the hard-top TTS is 1,345 mm (4.41 ft) in height, its open-top counterpart 1,350 mm (4.43 ft). The Roadster features an electrohydraulically operated soft top which opens and closes in twelve seconds, even on the move at speeds below 50 km/h (31.07 mph). The soft top incorporates a large glass rear window and folds in a "Z" shape. Neither a tonneau cover nor a cover flap is needed. Extra matting between the headlining and the outer skin improves insulation, and an electrically extending/retracting wind deflector reduces drafts on the occupants' necks when the hood is down.

The Interior

Awaiting the passengers inside are deep-set sports seats featuring seat heating and height adjustment. They come as standard with leather/Alcantara seat covers in either black or black and silver, plus silver-colored contrast stitching. The sports seats are optionally available in Silk Nappa leather upholstery. There is also the option of the Impulse leather package, comprising black trim with silver stitching in the Coupe or chennai brown trim with espresso-colored contrast stitching in the Roadster.

The cockpit in the TTS is molded around the driver like a sleek-fitting suit. Its clean-cut, sporty design and uncompromising quality of construction is another Audi trademark. Instruments with a gray background and white needles, metal pedals, aluminium trim panels, plus a multifunctional leather sports steering wheel with a rim that’s flattened at the bottom add further styling touches.

The driver information system with its new white high-resolution display concentrates all important information where it can be clearly seen by the driver, and includes a timer function that is able to record lap times on race tracks. The chorus audio system with CD drive comes standard.

As well as being great fun to drive, the new sports car from Audi boasts a host of credentials that make it eminently suitable for day-to-day use. The Roadster is available with an optional load-through facility complete with removable ski bag for added practicality. The trunk has a capacity of 250 litres (8.83 cubic ft). The rear seats in the Coupe have a split-folding design, allowing luggage capacity to be increased from 290 to 700 litres (10.24 to 24.72 cubic ft.).

The Features

Sales of the TTS will begin in the early summer. The TT line's dynamic top model comes generously equipped. Its list of features includes quattro permanent all-wheel drive, the Audi magnetic ride adaptive suspension system, 18-inch aluminium wheels, xenon plus headlights with LED daytime running lights, plus – on the Roadster – the fully automatic soft top including power wind deflector.

The interior is dominated by the multifunctional leather sports steering wheel. The extended aluminium styling and heated sports seats with their leather/Alcantara upholstery are further highlights. An automatic air conditioning system and Isofix child seat mountings on the front passenger seat are designed to enhance both comfort and safety.

The list of optional extras includes two navigation systems, a Bose sound system, an iPod port, an LED interior lighting package, electrically adjustable seats, as well as the adaptive light dynamic cornering light system. The S tronic dual-clutch transmission is an Audi technology that sets the standards among the competitors.

Ten Years of Audi TT – A Decade of Success

The unveiling of the TTS marks something of an anniversary for Audi: It was 10 years ago that the TT Coupe first took to the road, swiftly acquiring the status of a design icon. Ever since then the TT has been going from one strength to the next, in both hard-top and open-top form.

The prototype that was premiered by Audi at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September 1995, painted in silver gray, instantly captured the imagination of the show visitors. The strict consistency of its puristic form drew on the Bauhaus style of the 1920s. The solidly built body, the sleek glass house, the strict geometry of the shoulder line and circular arcs, the large wheels and the aluminium tank cap – all of these elements added up to deliver a new statement from Audi, the innovative technology brand. A few weeks later the Roadster appeared at the Tokyo Motor Show where it was also a tremendous hit.

The Coupe started to roll off the production line in 1998, followed one year later by the Roadster. The shortened floor assembly of the Audi A3 proved to form an ideal base for the car – its wheel suspension endowed the TT with dynamic handling characteristics. The puristic design was also retained for the interior. Here, the classic emblem of the TT concept, the circle, had a leading role to play, featuring in the styling of the air outlets and many of the controls.

The first TT was powered by the turbocharged 1.8-litre four-cylinder drive unit, which came in two different versions. The basic unit delivered an output of 132 kW (180 hp) and the top version 165 kW (225 hp). The more powerful engine was available exclusively with a six-speed manual transmission and quattro drive. Customers buying the basic version had the choice of either the six-speed technology again or front-wheel drive combined with a five-speed transmission.

Audi started to expand the range of drivetrain options in 2001. First came a new version of the 1.8-litre unit generating 110 kW (150 hp), followed in 2003 by a 3.2‑litre V6 developing 184 kW (250 hp). This new engine could be matched with the S tronic dual-clutch transmission as an option.

The six-speed tiptronic transmission became available for the 132 kW (180 hp) four-cylinder model with front-wheel drive. In 2005, this engine's output was increased to 140 kW (190 hp) and the power output of the entry-level unit jumped to 120 kW (163 hp). Production of the coupe and roadster versions of the first TT model series ended in 2006 and 2007 respectively.

Audi TT 2.0 TFSI quattro

Audi is expanding its TT range with the new top-of-the-line TTS model as well as an additional drive variant scheduled for launch in April. In the future, the Audi TT 2.0 TFSI will also be available with quattro permanent all-wheel drive. The standard-specification quattro permanent all-wheel drive ensures loss-free transfer of the engine's power to the road via S tronic, which switches gears with virtually no interruption of traction.

At the heart of the quattro system is an electronically controlled and hydraulically operated multi-plate clutch, which now works faster than ever thanks to a new pressure reservoir that is also used in the TTS. If required, all of the drive force can be redirected from the front to the rear wheels within a matter of milliseconds.

The TFSI four-cylinder version draws its power from a displacement of 1,984 cc. An international jury of automotive specialists voted it the “Engine of the Year” three years in a row in 2005, 2006 and 2007. The TFSI engine pairs the FSI gasoline direct injection system developed by Audi with a turbocharger – an ideal combination. The four-cylinder engine responds spontaneously to the throttle and is ultra-refined. It transmits 280 Nm (206.52 lb-ft) of torque to the crankshaft at just 1,800 rpm, and is able to keep this pulling power constant all the way up to 5,000 rpm. The nominal power output of 147 kW (200 hp) is delivered between 5,100 and 6,000 rpm. With a top speed of 238 km/h (Roadster 235 km/h), the Coupé can sprint from 0 auf 100 km/h in 6.2 seconds, while the Roadster requires just two-tenths of a second more.

Audi TT 2.0 TDI quattro
Audi TT Roadster 2.0 TDI quattro

Powerful performance with maximum efficiency

Audi is once again setting standards, this time with the new Audi TT and its TDI engine—a model that combines pure sportiness and powerful performance with sensational efficiency. The Audi TT 2.0 TDI Coupe quattro and Audi TT Roadster 2.0 TDI quattro are the first series-production sports cars to feature diesel engines. It’s a compelling union: The two-litre engine generates dynamic propulsion with 125 kW (170 hp) and 350 Nm (258.15 lb-ft) of torque, yet the TT Coupe and TT Roadster consume an average of only 5.3 litres and 5.5 litres of fuel per 100 km (44.38 mpg and 42.77 mpg) respectively—unparalleled in the sports car segment.

Audi is setting the pace with this synthesis of excellent dynamism and low fuel consumption, as it has done for many years: Since debuting in 1989 the TDI engines from the brand with the four rings have been paving the way for the world’s most successful efficiency technology and acting as trendsetters for the entire automobile industry. Today, these powerful, refined and highly fuel-efficient engines represent a modern, smart take on sportiness. The run of victories achieved by the Audi R10 TDI diesel race car at the Le Mans 24 Hours and in the American Le Mans Series are impressive evidence of the tremendous potential of this technology.

The dynamic diesel engines from Audi exert an exciting impact not just in racing but also in series-production models—and now indeed in a sports car. The TT Coupe quattro with the 2.0 TDI sprints from zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 7.5seconds and achieves a top speed of 226 km/h (140.43 mph). The Audi TT Roadster, likewise equipped with quattro permanent all-wheel drive, requires only an extra tenth of a second for the standard sprint, and continues up to a top speed of 223 km/h (138.57 mph). Both versions serve as outstanding examples of the success of the Audi efficiency strategy, thanks to their fuel efficiency ratings of 5.5 litres per 100 km (42.77 mpg), a figure that corresponds to CO2 emissions of only 145 grams/km.

Powerful, refined and efficient: The 2.0 TDI

The new four-cylinder TDI engine (engine displacement = 1,968 cc) represents a fresh take on the all-round compelling qualities of the TDI concept. Designers of the dual-camshaft, two-litre model looked to its predecessor—the most-produced diesel engine in the world—and expanded upon its major strengths: driving pleasure, efficiency and refinement.

The new common rail injection system is equipped with highly modern piezo injectors, whose eight-hole injection nozzles can perform up to five distinct injection sequences per cycle. This fine degree of modulation creates a modest pressure increase in the combustion chambers, resulting in a significantly reduced noise level. The system pressure of 1,800 bar allows fuel to form a fine dispersion, enabling precise, highly efficient combustion.

The turbocharger is also part of a new generation and operates with adjustable vanes that allow torque to build up rapidly. The positions of swirl flaps on the intake manifold are controlled by electric motors in order to adapt the flow of air to the current load and engine speed. The geometry of the engine’s pistons has been modified, and the acoustics of the camshaft drive belt have been overhauled. Just as they did in the preceding model, two balancing shafts reduce the vibrations arising in the crankshaft drive.

The cumulative result of this progress is a high maximum engine speed of 5,000 rpm and, most importantly, improved thermodynamics in the combustion chambers. What this means is that the engine can run on up to 60 percent recycled exhaust that has been thoroughly cooled by the radiator. This results in a drastic reduction in untreated NOx emissions, with the 2.0 TDI already meeting the threshold values of the upcoming Euro 5 standard.

Dynamic road performance

The 2.0 TDI in the Audi TT Coupe and the Audi TT Roadster delivers 125 kW (170 hp) at 4,200 rpm and sends a full 350 Nm (258.15 lb-ft) of torque to the crankshaft at engine speeds between 1,750 and 2,500 rpm. Operating quietly and generating little in the way of vibration, this model delivers a hefty amount of power at the lowest rpm levels and is highly responsive to input from the gas pedal. Its supreme power development lends this engine its own unique, fascinating character—that of a muscular, smart sports engine.

The Audi TT Coupe 2.0 TDI quattro easily leaves the gasoline-powered competition behind when accelerating from a standstill. It sprints from zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in just 7.5 seconds and never looks back until it reaches 226 km/h (140.43 mph). The TT Roadster accelerates to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 7.7 seconds and keeps going up to 223 km/h (138.57 mph).

These models—the world’s first diesel sports cars—consume an average of only 5.3 litres and 5.5 litres of fuel per 100 km (44.38 mpg and 42.77 mpg) respectively, which corresponds to CO2 emissions of a mere 140 g/km and
145 g/km. In so doing, they are setting a benchmark that represents a veritable quantum leap in the sports car segment. With the TDI engine in the TT series, Audi once again establishes its leading role on the diesel market. The brand with the four rings is advancing progress and starting at the top.

In keeping with the theme of sporty performance, Audi has combined its two diesel-engine sports cars with highly effective manual six-speed transmissions whose short lever travel allows the driver to shift quickly, easily and precisely. The housings for these transmissions are made of lightweight, high-tech magnesium materials. Relatively long final transmission ratios have been employed to bring the drivetrain in line with the character of the TDI engine.

In light of their high torque values, Audi is equipping both of its new TT models with quattro permanent all-wheel drive. The heart of this system is an electronically controlled, hydraulically activated multi-plate clutch, which is located in the rear of the vehicle for improved weight distribution. This clutch generally distributes up to 85 percent of the engine power to the front axle and 15 percent to the rear axle; in extreme situations it can divert up to 100 percent of the power to either axle.

The overall concept: An exercise in uncompromised sportiness

Consistent efforts to reduce vehicle weight are also part of the efficiency strategy pursued by the brand with the four rings. Both sports cars are very lightweight: the 2 + 2-seater TT Coupe weighs only about 1,370 kilograms (3020.33 lbs) when empty, while the two-seater TT Roadster with soft top weighs roughly 1,415 kilograms (3119.54 lbs). Underlying these low weights is an innovative hybrid body construction developed by Audi. Front components are made of aluminium and utilize Space Frame technology; rear components are made of steel. This solution guarantees that the frame is as rigid as possible and optimizes load distribution between the axles.

The Audi TT Coupe and TT Roadster are dynamic, emotion-packed sports cars. As was the case with preceding models, these cars are impressive for their powerful design, whose dynamic flow continues on into the interior. The cockpit contains multiple nods to the circle motif, and the sports steering wheel with its flat-bottomed rim fits the driver’s hand like a glove. The sport seats are deep-set, providing a sporty seated position and firm lateral support. The backs of both rear seats fold down in the TT Coupe, making the trunk space grow from 290 to 700 cubic litres (10.24 – 24.72 cubic ft). The Roadster (250 litres, 8.83 cubic ft) comes with a practical load-through hatch upon request.

The sports suspension likewise offers extraordinarily dynamic features. The front suspension is pivoted on an aluminium subframe and has a wide track measuring 1,572 millimetres (61.89 inches). A highly precise rack-and-pinion steering system with a direct steering ratio provides an intimate link between the driver and the road. Power steering with servo assist, which decreases as speed increases, is generated by an electromechanical drive that is even more efficient than a hydraulic pump.

The coil springs and shock absorbers in the four-link rear axle are situated in separate areas. The links are also finely differentiated: The layout of the trailing links, which absorb the propulsive and braking forces, is relatively soft to promote a comfortable ride. The connections to the three transverse links per wheel, on the other hand, are rigid in order to direct transverse forces into the body with precision.

The Audi TT Coupe 2.0 TDI quattro and Audi TT Roadster 2.0 TDI quattro roll on 16-inch, cast aluminium wheels fitted with 255/55 R16 tires. Behind the wheels are large disk brakes with pads that develop large coefficients of friction. The ESP stabilization program supports the neutral to slight understeering feel of the TT—the finishing touch on an overall portrait of exciting dynamics, exhilarating driving pleasure and stability you can count on.

Audi magnetic ride, a high-tech shock-absorber system available as an option, is an adaptive system that resolves the traditional conflict of interests between comfort and handling. A magneto-rheological fluid circulating in the shock absorbers changes the direction of the magnetic particles within milliseconds when electricity is applied; this alters the overall characteristics of the fluid and, in turn, modifies the damping characteristic. The driver can choose between “Normal” and “Sport” programs by flipping a switch.

Equipment makes a statement of refined style

Standard equipment for both of the new TT models reflects the sporty character and refined style of the series. Faux aluminium accents add a shine to gray inlays and various other components in the interior. The sports steering wheel comes with a Nappa leather cover. The climate control system (standard for the TT Coupe) regulates heating and ventilation in response to the level of sunlight. The driver information system and chorus audio system round out the standard equipment.

A wide array of high-tech equipment is available as options, including a highly modern generation of audio devices, electrically adjustable front seats, the adaptive light dynamic cornering light system and two navigation systems with a user interface based on the Audi MMI concept—a cut above the competition.

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