The Audi TT RS Roadster is the fastest version of the TT convertible. Its monumental performance comes courtesy of a 400hp five-cylinder engine under the bonnet that powers all four wheels for dizzying acceleration. It rivals other fast roadsters such as the Porsche 718 Boxster, Ford Mustang GT Convertible, and the Mercedes-AMG SLC43.
Inside, the new TT RS keeps the same layout and features as the standard TT meaning the three air vents, mounted in the middle of the dashboard also house the climate controls. The minimalistic interior design continues with Audi’s Virtual Cockpit in place of the speedo and rev counter dials and a flat-bottomed steering wheel stolen from the R8 supercar which houses the starter button, and a pair of supportive leather sports seats.
Unlike the TT RS coupe, the roadster doesn’t have rear seats – all the space is now taken by the retractable fabric roof. Up front, however, there’s plenty of space and the driving position is exactly as you’d hope from a sports car. Even the boot is decent by roadster standards, offering a similar volume to that of a supermini.
It may be an uncompromising performance machine, but the TT RS still offers some neat practical touches. Microphones integrated into the seat belt ensures chats via Bluetooth-enabled phone calls can be clearly heard even with the roof down and the fabric roof can be folded electrically at speeds of up to 31mph.
As far as the driving experience goes, think of the TT RS as a drop-top rocket ship. It combines a 395hp engine with Audi’s famed Quattro four wheel drive system to deliver dizzying acceleration. There are several driving modes to choose from on the fly, allowing the driver to tweak the suspension, gearbox and steering settings according to the conditions via a steering-wheel-mounted button. A flap installed in the exhaust system opens when the most sporty ‘dynamic’ mode is selected, increasing the volume of that wonderful five-cylinder engine.
The RS goes like a TT with two jet engines strapped to the back
In terms of pure performance, there’s little else that can match the Audi TT RS for the money. From a standing start it delivers acceleration figures which trouble supercars costing three times as much, and through the corners, it rarely feels anything other than utterly composed. That it also looks stunning on the inside, striking on the outside, and is packed with loads of tech means it’s a car which is very easy to fall for.
The only criticisms levelled at it come from the serious driving purists. As quickly as it can take the corners, it never feels as thrilling as a Porsche 718 Boxster, nor will you feel like you’ve achieved as much in doing so. But for most folks that’s just fine.
While the Porsche might have more appeal for track day enthusiasts, the TT RS’ all-round ability makes it easier and more fun to live with on the road which will land it a lot of fans.