A car that didn’t get a lot of love back in its day but is now starting to become much more appreciated is the first-gen Audi TT. We’re big fans of the first-gen TT, as its styling, interior and fun-to-drive character all make it a very cool car to own, even today. In this new video from Doug DeMuro, we get to take an up close look at the original TT and why it’s still so cool.
Back in the day, the first-gen Audi TT was actually quite influential in its styling. It was one of the first cars to really hide its bumpers, as DeMuro explains, and it created this lovely rounded look to both its front and rear ends. It’s a look that’s still fresh and could be on sale today. While modern TTs do a good job of honoring the original’s styling, there’s still nothing quite like it.
On the inside, DeMuro shows us the cabin of an Audi TT equipped with the famous baseball-glove interior. Its beautiful brown leather and baseball glove-like stitching makes it one of the most unique interiors to ever be fitted to a modern car. We wish automakers would still do funky stuff like that. I also love that steering wheel with the brown rim.
Powering the first-gen Audi TT was either a 1.8 liter turbocharged four-cylinder or a 3.2 liter naturally-aspirated V6. The former came in two flavors; 180 hp and 225 hp. The more powerful four-pot is the engine to get of the three, as it packs the best power-to-weight ratio of the bunch and it was still available with a six-speed manual and all-wheel drive.
The original TT was slammed for its driving dynamics back in its day but a lot of that was probably unfair. It was criticized for being based on the MkIV Volkswagen Golf and for not handling as well as the BMW Z3 of the time. Both are true but neither mean it’s a bad driving car. In fact, it’s quite fun to drive, with nice steering and a playful chassis. It’s not as nimble or as exciting as either the BMW Z3 or Mercedes-Benz SLK of the time but it’s still a great car.