The 2013 Audi TT RS is the star on track, but all TT models offer fun and efficiency, plus a welcome dash of style.
Straddling the gap between a sporty car and a true sports car, the Audi TT shirks simple classification in favor of a combination of design, practicality, and fun-driving spirit underpinned with solid Audi engineering.
The 2013 Audi TT carries forward the 2012 model's features and designs unchanged. Nonetheless, the current TT continues to offer a competitive, luxurious package with the most sporting credibility of any TT thus far.
With the V-6 engine option absent since 2011, the main choice to be had under the hood is between a pair of 2.0-liter TFSI turbocharged engines. The standard version in the TT rates 211 horsepower, while the TTS gets a more aggressive 265-hp tune. Even the base TT is fairly quick, getting to 60 mph in 5.3 seconds, while the TTS does the same run in 4.9 seconds.
A third model is also available, in the form of the (coupe-only) raw and rowdy TT RS, which gets a turbocharged five-cylinder engine rated at 360 hp. The TT and TTS both come exclusively with a dual-clutch automatic six-speed transmission, though it's available in either coupe or roadster body styles. The TT RS is only available with a six-speed manual transmission. All models of the TT are all-wheel-drive only, though the TTS and TT RS get an upgraded Haldex AWD system.
While the TT Roadster models are heavier than their Coupe counterparts, the 2013 Audi TT is nimbler and more eager than the original, with a low-slung, grippy feel that feels as sporty as it looks. Sharp, responsive handling, strong throttle response from torquey turbo engines, and the quattro all-wheel drive system make for a quick, competent package.
Inside, the 2013 TT is comfy up front, with enough cabin and cargo space for a weekend getaway for two. The rear seats, however, are mostly there for looks--or lower insurance rates--as the minimal leg room leaves practicality at the door sill. Quality, fit, and finish is very good, with low cabin noise, solid-feeling materials, and rich finishes.
The 2013 Audi TT hasn't been safety tested yet, but Audi's reputation for safety through engineering, plus a full complement of modern safety equipment should inspire confidence.
On the gas mileage front, the TT isn't as efficient as its small footprint might make you believe, but it's still quite green for a sport coupe, rating 23 mpg city and 31 mpg highway in Coupe form.