It wasn’t too long ago that we learned about the potential death of the Audi TT after this generation. While still a great car and one that’s loved by fans of the brand, the TT just isn’t selling well enough to justify its continuation, specifically the TT Roadster. The reason for that has less to do with the TT and more to do with customers just not wanting small, sporty roadsters anymore.
Because of the lack of demand, Audi has decided to axe the TT and it’s hard to argue with the logic. If no one is buying it, why continue to pour R&D money into it and that same money could be used to fund future EVs, which are far more important?
However, there’s an emotional aspect to the Audi TT, and roadsters in general, that is hard to ignore. Having a sporty roadster in the lineup just makes a car brand more exciting and the idea of owning a sporty roadster to take out on weekends and play with is still incredibly enticing. So there might be a way for us all to have our cake and eat it, too.
Electric power is the future of the automobile, no one is denying that. But that doesn’t mean that future electric cars have to be dull, beige and boring driving appliances. In fact, electric powertrains are actually great in sporty roadsters. So Audi could absolutely make the next-gen TT all-electric and there have been hints to that already. But not just Audi, all brands that currently have roadsters likely to be axed in the near future can make the switch to electric power to keep them alive.
Last year, I had the chance to drive a BMW i8 Roadster for a week. It was one of the more interesting cars I’ve ever had the chance to drive. Heavily flawed and not worth its massive price tag, of those two facts there’s no doubt. However, it did have one very special ability and one that was incredibly fun; the ability to drive under electric power only, with the roof down.
Driving around in the i8 Roadster with the top down was a blast. It was quick enough and entirely silent. What’s weird is that I never missed the engine noise. I never wanted to hear a barking engine behind my head. Instead, I felt more in-tune with my surroundings because I could hear them better. And the little hum and whine of the electric motor made me feel like I was driving something from the future.
It really was a fun car to drive in that manner and I’m really hoping more automakers, Audi included, start taking notice. The idea of a fast, fun-to-drive Audi TT Roadster with an electric powertrain is one I really like. Having a TT that can drive with the top down under pure electric power would be a blast. So I hope Audi does revive the TT with an electric powertrain and I’ll take it a step further and say that I hope other brands do the same with their roadsters.