By Mike Torpey on 2018-01-06 - Driving Force news editor and responsible for organising our daily output. He was staff motoring editor of the Liverpool Echo for 20 years.
Audi TT Coupe 2.0
TFSI quattro S line
SOME cars are instantly recognisable, almost impervious to the passing of time - the Audi TT Coupe is one of those cars.
Rather like that stalwart of Audi's sister brand, the Volkswagen Golf, the TT has stood out like a beacon since its original launch back in 1999.
The latest, third generation, version blends elements of the previous two models but brings with it better dynamics, improved performance and economy, plus an outstanding cabin experience.
Lighter than before courtesy of its predominantly aluminium construction, the TT is also a digital dream for its owners thanks to a virtual cockpit based around a 12.3-inch high resolution LCD display.
Drivers can choose between two display modes - a classic view with the speedo and rev counter in the foreground or in ‘infotainment' mode whereby the virtual instruments are smaller.
The freed up space provides room for functions like sat-nav maps while the lower edge displays outside temperature, time, mileage and warning or info symbols.
Control is via buttons on the steering wheel or Audi's MMI control dial behind the gear lever and it's easy enough to operate.
It's all smart stuff in a car that also has a slightly longer wheelbase than before - bringing extra luggage space.
Less spacious though are the pair of rear seats featured in the coupe - TT roadster models are strictly two-seater - which are suitable only for kids, little ones at that.
Three trim grades - Sport, S line and Black Edition - are up for grabs, the S line of the tested model coming with 19-inch wheels and lowered suspension.
Drivers with an eye on economy are likely to opt for one of the 2.0 TDI diesel models and in particular the efficiency-focused Ultra version capable of an average 60.1mpg.
It isn't quite so fast accelerating as the TSFI model, nor does it boast Audi's quattro all-wheel drive system, but has a cost price for the same trim grade of more than Â£3,000 less.
That said the 2.0-litre petrol is a terrifically engaging car to drive, holding the road like a limpet, displaying perfect feedback from the steering and remaining smooth and composed at all times - just slow right down for speed bumps.
The 230ps of punch is transferred to the road via a six-speed dual-clutch S tronic automatic gearbox which works a treat and is lightning fast.
It all adds up to a car that's stylish, refined and packed with quality, though dipping into the options bin can ramp up the price.
Audi TT Coupe 2.0 TFSI quattro S line S Tronic
Mechanical: 230ps, 1,984cc 4-cyl petrol engine driving four wheels via six-speed dual clutch auto transmission
Max Speed: 155mph
0-62mph: 5.3 seconds
Combined MPG: 42.8
Insurance Group: 33
C02 emissions: 153g/km
Bik rating: 29%
Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles
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