Shock plan to turn new Audi TT into a four-door coupe
The next generation of the Audi TT will be dramatically overhaul, with the iconic sports car transforming into a more practical and profitable four-door coupe, Auto Express can exclusively reveal. And it will be in showrooms in less than two years.
The German firm first hinted at the idea of a four-door TT with the TT Sportback concept back at the 2014 Paris Motor Show. However, plans to bring that model into showrooms never got off the ground for a number of reasons.
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It was partly due to a lack of customer demand, but the main factor was the VW Group emissions scandal, uncovered in 2016, which meant extensive cost savings had to be made and forced the termination of a number of projects across all brands, including Audi.
Four years down the line from that initial concept car, and with the shackles of Dieselgate loosening, Audi has finally given the green light to the four-door TT, Auto Express understands. It will serve as a direct replacement for the two-door model, which this year marks its 20th anniversary, as shrinking demand for sports cars and small coupes has forced Audi into a rethink for the next model.
One Audi board member told us: “If you set falling demand against rising costs, it’s obvious Audi cannot sustain its present course in the medium term. Instead, there has been intensive consideration of the coupe and the convertible in the compact segment.”
The UK is a good barometer of how well the TT performs for Audi in the sales charts because it is the car’s third most successful market. Sales of the model peaked at 10,413 examples in the UK back in 2008 but they have failed to surpass that mark since.
Auto Express understands that the project has been finalised and Audi’s board of management has approved the design of the four-door model.
Our exclusive images preview the look of the car. The TT’s low-slung stance is still recognisable, only with an extended wheelbase and rear end added to accommodate the extra doors.
The overall proportions are expected to remain close to those of the original TT Sportback concept, meaning the body will be around 290mm longer than today’s coupe, while 60mm will be added to the car’s width and 120mm to the wheelbase. The four-door is expected to be based on an updated version of the MQB platform that underpins the current TT.
Whereas today’s model, which has recently been updated, is only available with petrol engines, Audi will offer an extensive line-up of conventional and electrified powertrains on the next-generation version.
First to arrive will be a range of mild-hybrid petrol engines using 48-volt technology. This is designed to fill brief gaps of turbo lag and help improve economy by as much as 10 per cent. A new generation of electrified diesel engines will also be offered.
Plug-in hybrid technology will play a key role as well, as will the option of a fully electric model. Both of these will be a part of Audi’s plan to have 20 electrified vehicles on sale by 2025.
The German manufacturer predicts that around 35 per cent of its overall sales will be accounted for by such models in the same timeframe.
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