Not content for its little TT to be known simply for its enduring design, Audi amps up this compact coupe with an uprated engine and chassis to create the TTS.
'S' is Audi's version of BMW's 'M' or Benz's AMG divisions: cars that wear that letter -- think S3/S4/S6/S7/S8 -- are the best of the bunch, performance-wise. The TTS gives Audi a car that can keep up with uplevel versions of competitors like the BMW Z4 and Porsche Cayman -- though both versions of the latest 718 Cayman actually have more power than this sportiest TT.
But no matter: Audi seems unconcerned that its top-trim TT coupe isn't the most potent kid on the block. Even having morphed into a third generation last year, this car still casts one of the most recognizable shadows in its class thanks to styling that really hasn't changed that much since the original TT debuted in 1999.
Performance-wise, the TTS shares a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder with its base model stablemate, but gains 72 hp and 22 lb-ft of torque, for totals of 292 and 280. Like the base model, Quattro all-wheel drive is standard, as is a six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission that likes to be shifted manually. There is no traditional, three-pedal manual transmission on offer.
Where the base TT comes as a coupe and convertible, the TTS is a coupe only.
Fuel consumption estimates haven't been set for 2017, but the mechanically-identical 2016 model's ratings are 10.3/8.6 L/100 km (city/highway).
At its $62,700 starting price, the TTS' standard kit largely mirrors that of the regular TT, but this quicker model gets 19-inch wheel and LED headlights that are options in the lesser version; other additions include dynamic rear turn signals and Audi's excellent magnetic ride suspension.
Otherwise, the TTS comes with LED interior lighting, nine-speaker stereo with satellite radio and music interface with USB connector, Bluetooth, power driver and passenger seats, 12.3-inch "virtual cockpit" gauge cluster, automatic climate control, heated side mirrors, voice control, Audi drive select, aluminum optic interior, heated Nappa leather sport seats with diamond stitching, rear parking sensors, MMI touch with handwriting recognition, leather-trimmed steering wheel, progressive steering and cruise control.
For $1,400, a driver comfort package adds front and rear parking sensors, backup camera, Audi side assist and intelligent keyless entry. A $2,200 navigation package brings a smartphone interface, speech dialogue system with whole-address entry and DVD playback.