GRAN TURISMO CAR REVIEWS

Audi TT

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gray_tt1.8.jpg
2000 Audi TT 1.8 (Mk1)


STATS

Years Represented: 1999-2003
Class: Compact Sports Car
Type: 2-door coupe
 
Country: Germany 
 Host: GT2, GT3, GT4, & GT5
 
 
Price: 46,580 (GT2 & 3) 
           23,850 (used 1.8; GT4)
           46,713 (GT5 used car lot)

GT5 mileage: 2,587.5

Construction: unit steel
Length: 159.1" // Width: 69.4" // Height: 52.9"
Wheelbase: 95.6"
Overhang: @5' 3.5"
Track: 60.2" [F] 59.6" [R]
Ground Clearance: 5.7"
Weight: 3,075 pounds
Weight Distribution: near 50/50
 
Layout: front engine / all-wheel drive (GT2) or front wheel drive (GT3 & 4)
Tires: 225/45ZR-17
F. Suspension: M. strut / torsion bars / lwr. A-arms / anti-roll bar
R. Suspension: double wishbone / coils ?/ anti-roll bar
Brakes: vented discs


Note: the power & testing results below for GT3 were enhanced with an oil change after full engine break-in; meaning I didn't test the TT in this game while it was truely stock.

In GT4, the car also had an oil change, but as a used car this doesn't affect its "stockness" as much, since this car had about 29,000 miles.

GT5: no oil change or rebuild. This car is at 2,587 miles, and it perfectly broken-in. Quoted versus tested HP matched in this game perfectly.


Engine: 1.8 liter DOHC inline 4

Construction: aluminum block & head


Tested HP:

GT2: 223 @ 6,000 rpm     
GT3:232 @ 6,000       
GT4: 221 @ 5,900
GT5: 221 @ 6,000

Tested Torque:
GT2: 207 @ 2,500 rpm   
GT3: 214 @ 2,500
      
GT4: 206 @ 2,200-5,500
GT5: 217 @ 2,500

 
Credits per HP:
GT2: 208.88               
GT3; 200.77              
GT4: 107.92

Pounds per HP:  
GT2: 13.78                 
GT3: 13.25                  
GT4: 13.91
GT5: 13.91

Hp per Liter:      
GT2: 125.2                  
GT3: 130.3                 
GT4: 123.0
GT5: 123.0

 
Aspiration: intercooled turbo
Fuel system: SMPFi
Valves / Cyl: 5
Compression: 9.0:1
 

GT2 & 3 Redline: 6,500 // RPM Limit: 7,000

GT4 & 5 Idle: 750 // Redline: 6,500 // RPM Limit: 6,600

Transmission: 6-speed manual

Differential:

Traction Controls: yes
Stability Controls: no


GT3 testing below included an oil change after engine break-in.

Not sure if TCS was on or not. GT4 testing included an oil change and TCS was on "1", since a real-life stock TT would have TCS on. Also note that the GT2 car appears as a true AWD Quattro, while the cars from GT3 & 4 are front-drives (more info later).

GT5: TCS & ASM were both off. No oil or engine rebuild
 


0-60 mph:
GT2: 7.0xx seconds        
GT3: 9.566            
GT4: 9.383
GT5: 8.829

0-100mph:
GT2: 18.4xx seconds    
GT3: 21.116           
GT4: 20.250
GT5: 19.661
400 M:
GT2:
15.229 @ 90 mph  
GT3:
17.375 @ 89.7
mph  
GT4: 17.266 @ 91 mph
GT5: 15.792 @ 91 mph

1 Kilometer:
GT2:
27.966 @ 118 mph  
GT3: 30.150 (mph n/a)      
GT4: 29.845 @ 119 mph
GT5: 28.593 @ 118 mph

1/4 Mile:
15.850 @ 92 mph

1 Mile:
40.494 @ 130 mph


GT2 Test Track: 1:49.601
GT3 Test Track: 2:42.864
GT4 Test Course: 2:35.559
GT5 Daytona Lap: 1:01.592


Top Gear RPM @ 60 mph: 2,400 to 2,500 (depends on game)

Brakes 100-0 mph:
3.183 seconds (GT2?)
5.450 (GT5) 
 
Top Speed at Redline (GT3)
1st: 33.2 mph
2nd: 55.7 mph
3rd: 78.9 mph
4th: 105.5 mph
5th: 131.0 mph
6th: 155.73 @ 6,400 rpm (GT2)
       150.9 @ 6,150 rpm (GT3)
       150.86 @ 6,200 rpm (GT4)

Top Speed at Redline (GT5)
1st: 31.6 mph
2nd: 49.4
3rd: 74.x
4th: 102.0
5th: 148.x mph @ 6,250 rpm

 

  

 


-------------------------EXTERIOR------------------------

There's a phrase that's become popular in the last 10 years that goes ‘pushing the envelope’.
 
Pushing the envelope? What envelope? Well, everyone has pretty much heard this, and we all know what it means...but who started it? Why an envelope? Why not (instead) a FedEx Overnite Express packet? Everyone knows Federal Express delivers fastest. Kinda makes it sound like the author of this ambiguous saying was some sort of mail clerk by day, Evel Kenevel daredevil by night and on weekends. “Yo, I work all day filing, but when the clock goes to 5, I be outtie. Then I push tha envelope, I push it to tha max, yo”.
 
Well, it's unclear where it came from. An internet search will just release a slew of Amazon.com shit...maybe some day I'll write a letter to the Straight Dope and clear the mystery.
 
But the phrase fits here, whatever its origins. The Audi TT Quattro does just this: in Gran Turismo, it's one car that really pushes the envelope. The stocky short hood / short deck theme that looks a bit stubby on the Audi A4 really works for the TT. The A4 seems unsure whether it wants to be a sedan or a sports car, but the TT is like the New Beetle's younger, jockier cousin; it can play civil by day in pedestrian traffic, rewarding its owner with its sporty interior, crisp handling, and good mileage, but on the tracks it's a different story.
 
This car is all about grip; the antithesis of a '60s-era muscle car, and great for the beginner who's learning the ropes. Learning the ropes...there's another phrase. WHAT ropes? Excuse me, but how exactly does one “learn” a rope? Do they mean tying a rope? Climbing a rope? Oh, boy I better not go there. Enough is enough and I got a whole review to cough up.
 
A very safe car. Safe because it can (and usually will) accept driver input, and translate it to the road with little complaint. Many a driver has become "one" with the road in such a car. A couple issues here: weight and stability, but they're not super-serious. The TT is a bit on the heavy side, mostly since it's extremely rigidly built (all German cars are). But there's also creature comforts, carpeting & extra seats, safety and sound-deadening equipment. Let's get rid of it.

Now we have another issue. The car has just over 5 feet of overhang...about 2 up front and 2 in the rear, and this lack of material is what makes the TT such an agile machine. The weight is what actually is keeping the car stable, so when it's removed, you'll start to experience a bit more looseness.
The TT likes to flop around at tracks like Seattle and Deep Forest and (assuming you have Stage 3 weight and not the racing scheme or wing kit) catches air alot where it shouldn't. But like I said, these issues aren't serious. They actually add some drama, making the TT Quattro a bit more exciting to drive.
 
And the TT is very driveable.
 
 

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Audi TT LM edition in action at Rome

tt_lm_rearview.jpeg


---------------------ENGINE / DRIVETRAIN--------------------

“Yo, I be outtie” all the hip hop dudes used to say. For those of you who are tragically unhip, this basically means “I'm leaving”. These words seem to have become popular at around the same time as the envelope phrase. Those who were really hip (and witty) started saying “I be Audi”, and some would even start saying "5000" when they left the party; cause Audi used to have a model called the "5000". See, I know my hip hop history.
 
And see, look at the TT, and watch its profile, 'cause it be Audi; as in-->>gone>>. That's what most Germans want on the Autobahn...to be gone. The TT complies here, though at first it's not what I thought it would be. It seems this nimble all-wheel drive should be a bit faster. The acceleration is good, but not as good as some other cars with similar stats.
 
0 to 60 in 7 seconds (in GT2) is best for a 1.8t while stock. Even the 3.2 liter V6 from GT4 can't pull any lower than 6.4 seconds. Quarter mile times for any TT are also a bit dismal. Anyways, what do you think? Don't you think these times could be could be better? 1.8L TTs in GT3 and GT4 (while fresh from the dealer-stock) will have acceleration runs much worse than the TT from GT2 or the 3.2 V6 of GT4. I'll explain why in the next chapter, in case you don't already know.
 
Really, it's not the engine's fault. The engine is doing its job just fine; this is really a gearing issue. 2nd gear redlines at 52 miles per hour, and in my test I let it hit the RPM limit (7,000 rpm), and it STILL didn't make it to 60. So that crucial shift up to third adds time. Also, the low-end torque we have here (peaking at 2,500 rpms) is nice and a popular feature of many modern Audis & Volkswagens. This lends us an early hand, so we don't have to keep revs spooled up at all times, but there's no "sweet spot" in these cars, no area where the power truely surges. 

The 1.8 Turbo and the 3.2 liter V6 are both guilty here. These engines are incredibly easy to work with, smooth as caramel, but neither feels very zippy at first.  1st gear stomps, but from here on up the car cruises to its destination....while not exactly hopping to get there.
Fortunately, Audi gives us a 6-speed, which allows the TT plenty of ceiling, and is perfect for many tracks. There isn't much horsepower down below 4,000 rpms, and the tranny knows this, so it'll keep you up where the action is even if you're an automatic transmission dude or dudette. In any game (GT2 or 3 or 4), there are 3 turbo upgrades with intercoolers to be had. The 3.2 liter V6 is naturally-aspirated and stays that way, unfortunately, although (again) there are three NA kits available.
 
Ultimately, the TT falls short of total GT domination, since at most it'll crank out 403 horsepower with 351 ft-lbs (in GT2) or a little more in GT3 (416 hp). GT4 1.8 liter turbos get the worst deal, and can make just 365 horses with 326 foot-pounds at best. 

 If you want more, there are some options available. In the 2nd game, you'll have to lay some serious cash on the TT LM edition to carry out your TT addiction. At first, the TT LM also seems allergic to power since 544 quoted hp is all it'll possess, but don't despair; the LM is a super-lightweight car. Like the Honda S2000 GT-1, it'll steal the World Cup even though it has up to 200 hp less than some of the cars in that race. GT3? The TT LM is absent, dammit, and there aren't any special models. GT4? Still gone; although there are some pretty hot concept & racing Audis lurking about in this game.

Aiight?
 

 

 

-------------------CHASSIS / HANDLING----------------------------

I don't know much about this car's racing history, but I'll bet the farm it's kicked major ass on-pavement as well as off. Wait. What the hell does that mean? Bet the farm? WHAT farm? Are we to assume some farmer somewhere one day had to make some sort of gamble and voila? Who makes up these things? Sheesh.
 
Anyway, as you've probably gathered, there isn't much to complain about here. The real-life Audi TT comes with two different drivetrains (a front drive and a 4-wheel drive), and thank GOD Gran Turismo didn't screw up and give us the non-Quattro (at least in GT2). In GT3: A-Spec or GT4, a stock 1.8 liter Turbo TT is plagued with lots of front-end wheelspin. Has anyone noticed? Does anybody know why? Bueller?
 
Psst...it's because the Audi TT in these later games is is NOT a Quattro!!!!!
 
Some computer jock over at Polyphony forgot to include the rear drivetrain in both GT3 and GT4. So this car is actually a front-drive, not an all-wheel drive, despite the fact that we can race it in the 4WD challenges! In real-life, one can buy TT Quattros and non-Quattros, so this isn't totally unrealistic...but the Quattro is what we would prefer.

But relax. There is a way to change this. Just go to the parts shop and buy yourself a variable-torque distributor (VTD). This automatically bolts in everything you'll need, and PRESTO..you've now got yourself a four-wheel drive TT. After I figured this out, I dusted off my TT with a 50 credit carwash, and now it happily gets to race again. I even entered the Seattle Enduro and chewed some American Beef!
 
About an hour ago in the first section of this review I said something about pushing the envelope, and here's where we can apply.

The all-wheel drive system matched with a short wheelbase, stocky car with short front & rear overhangs really makes for a pushable car; you can basically perform rally moves safely ON TARMAC during races if you're a show-off. And if you're not, the TT is still at its best since the lack of overhang makes for less drama, more super-grip handling. Depending on which tires you use, and I've found that the factory and sports tires will go a long way, you can set up your car for whatever your fancy is: more grip, more understeer, more back-end sliding, etc.

In GT4, the Audi TT was actually the first all-wheel drive I successfully drifted, though  the replay was not as dramatic-looking as it seemed as I drove. In this game, the 3.2 liter car (despite its larger engine) happens to be the better-handling machine in my opinion. Better than the 1.8, even after the 1.8 has a VCD affixed. The reason is complicated, but I'll try and explain.

By the time the 2nd-generation  TT was offered up, Audi had changed things. The original TT had traction controls, as well as an all-wheel drive system, ABS, and that was it. Well, the 3.2 liter car is a 2nd-gen model, which has a long list of three-letter initialed devices which I'll summarize. ABS (anti-lock brakes. They keep the brakes from locking up), EBD (electronic brake distribution, which actively points the car out of a spin or other treacherous situations by using computer-controlled brake pulses when needed at each wheel), ESP (electronic stability programming, sorta like ASC in our game), TCS, EDL (electronic differential lock...sort of like a computer-controlled limited slip). I've also read that Audi uses a yaw device in these latter TTs.

In our game, obviously PD couldn't have simulated all this junk, but I believe that they took the sum of all of it, and added this sum to the way they modeled the 3.2 liter. The result? The 3.2 liter V6 version acts and reacts like a true all-wheel drive car with electronic aids in place, which means it is constantly is adding and subtracting this and that while we drive; making the driving & racing experience smoother overall. The 1.8 liter turbo car, on the other hand, drives like a 4-wheel drive once a VCD is in place. This means that (under acceleration) it is harder to balance at times, especially out-of-corners. Set the VCD on 50/50, and it'll understeer constantly on pavement. Set it at 10/90, and the rear-end occasionally gets fishtaily, while the entire car feels off-kilter at all times; not nearly as smooth, direct, and planted as the 3.2 liter. Set it in-between, and you'll still never find the TT 3.2's near-perfect balance.

Understeer is also not as present in the 3.2 liter overall. As I drove it just now, I had a vision. The Lord of Understeer sat at a table, while the Lords of Grip, Oversteer, Fun, and Control surrounded the Lord of Understeer, voting down his actions over and over. I've never seen the Lord of Understeer so unhappy in GT4. But understeer is a tough old bastard, and occasionally it manages to sneak its wiry head into the conversation, anyways. You'll notice it in tighter corners where the all-wheel drive system has a tendency to "bind up"--suddenly losing speed and agility. You'll sometimes notice it again in high speed corners, where you'll be tempted to push and push the TT; understeer springs alive to have a chat.
 
Anyways, all of this can be avoided. In any game the TT can wind up becoming a boring car to drive, that's how well it handles. The first time you throw it directly into its safety net, (where grip predominates to keep you safe) it's fun as hell. It's still fun after the 10th time you try it. But after about 100 corners or so, you may find yourself needing a new challenge. 

....And so I personally like to WRECK this perfectness! Like an F student trying to conjole an honor boy into behaving badly, I'll get the TT sideways as much as I can at times...really push its envelope, man. Ugh, I hate that phrase. Don't worry, I promise not to use it anymore.

This review be Audi, anyways. ha ha.
 


 

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PROS-----------------------------------------------

1). Really good, grippy handling...some would say the BEST. Above average spring rates in the suspension, too. No wallowing about in this car. Tight as a turnip.
 
2). 6-speed tranny. Good job, Audi. Thanks P Digi.
 
3). Weight reductions trim pounds like they're supposed to, even in GT2--where a race-kit can be bought. The racing colors look great tho the little German flag kinda chills me a bit. Brrr.
 
4). Again in GT2: the Audi TT LM. No other words necessary.
 
5). Very tossable cars; great on dirt or paved tracks, sliding or gripping. Traction always on your side if you want it there, although GT3 & 4 cars will need a bit of work first.
 
6). Excellent for beginner-to-intermediates who can earn bronze medals with an occasional silver (and priced just right for someone of this caliber, too).
 
7). GT2: brake upgrades, slick tires, and other underparts not necessary for pretty much any A or B-license race this car can enter. You might wanna start earlier in GT3 or 4 with extra parts, tho.
 
8). GT4: A couple TTs exist...a first-gen and a 2nd-gen model. The 1st-gen model can occasionally be found in the used car lot for about half the price of a new TT.
 
9). Lots of early torque (odd for such a small engine) with a complete lack of turbo-lag. Power is almost always guaranteed no matter when you nail the gas, and comes on nice and smooth at all times. How did Audi do it?

10). A variety of power-upgrades, too.

11). GT4: 1.8 liter TTs can be bought as new or used cars. The 3.2 V6 can only be bought new, however. 


CONS------------------------------------------------------

1). Average acceleration. Not a snail, but still lacking. The torque feels great down-low, but this doesn't last long.
 
2). The TT in Gran Turismo 3 or 4 actually has front-wheel drive, despite the fact that PD calls it a "Quattro". Don't believe me? Hold the e-brake. Now try to rev the engine. See. You'll need to buy yourself a VTD to correct this..
 
3). Even with intercooled turbo (1.8T) or NA upgrades (3.2), the TT sometimes can't keep up with others. The difference between turbo stages 1, 2, and 3 aren't so dramatic like they are in an Audi S4.
 
4). Kinda heavy. With full weight removed (Stage 3), but no racing kit or wings, the car gets more and more skittish...finally starts feeling unbalanced at times.
 
5). A tad pricey. We've definately got some yuppy-stigma going on here...
 
6). The TT handles so good, some may find it boring to race. It rarely surprises and creates undramatic replays, unless you force it to misbehave.
 
7). A bit of a contridiction to #6 here: if there's one handling complaint, it's that the front-end has a habit of gripping into turns yet understeering out of them, especially in GT2 and GT3. This is unless you're using limited-slip differentials. If you have LSD equipped, you'll most likely experience just understeer. In any event, it can be trying to attempt to find that perfect balance between braking & steering. Basically, you'll never find it. This applies more to the TTs in GT2 and 3, not so much in 4 oddly.
 
8). Manual shifters constantly need to be aware that the engine lacks adequate redline area, especially as turbos get upgraded. The 3.2 liter V6 car doesn't have this problem.
 
9). Those "art deco" looks. While the TT is certainly different, its appearance has become so familiar, as to not be unique anymore. Plus, some may find them ugly & pretentious cars.
 

Published: June 11, 2005
Edited for GT4 content: March 30, 2009
 
 

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