2018 Audi TT RS

2018 Audi TT RS Coupe Review

The return of the high-performance Audi TT RS just put the rest of the sport coupe class on notice.
author
by Mark Takahashi
Edmunds Editor
After a five-year absence, the performance-focused Audi TT RS is back and poised to challenge some strong coupe rivals. We're already big fans of the "regular" TT, so with a 400-horsepower five-cylinder engine and sharper handling dynamics, we expect the RS to raise the bar in a class that inspires and excites. On top of athleticism, we also anticipate a decent amount of comfort, refinement and easy-to-use technology. The 2018 Audi TT RS may very well be the car to beat.


what's new

After about a five-year absence, the Audi TT RS is back. It represents the performance pinnacle for the already impressive Audi TT.

we recommend

There's only one trim level for the 2018 Audi TT RS, but we'd suggest adding the Technology package for the navigation and enhanced smartphone integration. Unless you're planning on a lot of time on racetracks, we'd consider passing on the Dynamic Plus package because its fixed-rate sport suspension will probably sacrifice ride comfort.

trim levels & features

The 2018 Audi TT RS is a four-seat high-performance variant of the standard TT coupe. Power comes from a turbocharged 2.5-liter five-cylinder, good for 400 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque. It drives all four wheels through a seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission.

Standard features include 19-inch wheels with summer performance tires, automatic LED headlights, automatic wipers, front and rear parking sensors, heated and power-folding auto-dimming mirrors, a rear spoiler, adaptive suspension dampers, selectable drive modes, and keyless entry and ignition.

On the inside, you get automatic climate control, a virtual instrument panel, leather upholstery, heated and power-adjustable front sport seats, Bluetooth, a rearview camera, Audi's MMI infotainment system and a nine-speaker sound system with satellite/HD radio and a USB input.

Major options include the Technology package (a Wi-Fi hotspot, a navigation system, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, blind-spot monitoring and a 12-speaker Bang & Olufsen premium audio system) and the Dynamic Plus package (front carbon-ceramic brakes, traditional fixed-rate sport suspension dampers, a top-speed increase to 174 mph, a carbon-fiber engine cover, a real-time tire pressure monitor and upgraded taillights). You can also get the Black Optic package (adds 20-inch wheels and gloss black accents) and the Design Selection Interior package (adds red air vents and seat belts, more leather trim and floor mats). Other add-ons include a sport exhaust, a different rear spoiler, red brake calipers and carbon-fiber interior trim.

driving

The regular TT is already a strong performer, and we expect the TT RS to surpass it by a sizable margin. Audi estimates the RS will reach 60 mph in only 3.6 seconds, which is almost 2 seconds quicker than the TT. Handling and braking should also be improved.

comfort

Our experience with identical sport seats on other Audis leads us to believe that the RS will have great seats. Expect thick side bolstering but with appropriate padding and contouring for all-day comfort. We expect the TT RS to ride stiffer than the TT, but the adaptive suspension should keep it from being harsh.

interior

Like most Audis, the TT RS' interior is ultra modern and elegantly simple. Materials are top-notch, and everything has a premium look and feel to it. This cabin simply makes you feel special in a way that few cars at any price can. The tiny rear seats are suitable for small children only.

utility

The trunk can hold up to 12 cubic feet, which is decent for such a sporty coupe. The rear seats fold for even more space. Interior storage is limited to just a few small bins and pockets.

technology

While the RS' power is the key draw to this car, there's also plenty of tech appeal. In particular, the virtual instrument panel is very easy to read in all lighting conditions and can be tailored to your tastes.

edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.