Audi's Sports Car Tradition Continues With the TT Roadster

7 January 2000

See the Video Intro Right Here on The Auto Channel
    LOS ANGELES, Jan. 7 -- For car lovers looking for the most
authentic form of motoring-open-top roadsters -- Audi has the answer:  the new
2001 Audi TT Roadster.  Making its North American debut at the Greater Los
Angeles Auto Show today, the TT is the newest member of the burgeoning
roadster market.

    The TT Roadster combines a no-compromise design with outstanding high
performance and is bound to generate enthusiasm among everyone with a passion
for driving.  It is available with either a 180- or a 225-horsepower 1.8-
liter, 4-cylinder turbocharged five-valve engine.  The 225-horsepower engine
also will be available in the hot-selling TT Coupe, which made its debut in
May 1999.  Acceleration from 0 to 60 miles per hour in the 225-hp version is
just 6.7 seconds.  The front-wheel-drive Roadster can reach a top speed of 130
mph.  The 225-hp version, with its standard quattro all wheel drive, reaches a
top speed of 143 mph.

    Even more impressive than the acceleration and top speeds of both models
is their vigorous pulling power.  The 225-hp TT's maximum torque of 207 lbs.
ft. is developed between 2,200 and 5,500 rpm and 173 lbs. ft. of torque is
available between 1,950 and 4,700 rpm from the 180-hp engine.  The well-chosen
gear ratios ensure supreme progress, with a 5-speed manual gearbox for the
180-hp front-wheel-drive Roadster and a 6-speed manual gearbox for the 225-hp
quattro.

    Of course, an open car is only truly attractive if it still appeals to the
eye with the soft top raised.  This was the challenge facing Audi's designers
as they designed the TT Roadster.  Therefore, the Roadster's bodywork
requirements were all taken into account and developed together with the
Coupe.  This explains the many roadster-specific ideas that have turned the
experience of driving under open skies into pure enjoyment.

    The TT's soft top, with its large heated rear window, can be opened in a
single-stage process and stowed behind the seats.  A tonneau cover can be
quickly and easily attached to conceal the soft top when open or stored in the
trunk when not in use.  Turbulence, something that roadster occupants usually
have to contend with at high speeds, is reduced by an electrically retractable
glass windbreak, shaped to follow the outline of the rollover bars.

    In addition to performance and design, Audi focused on safety.  The
Roadster unlocks a new chapter in open-top car safety, beginning with the two
aluminum rollover bars which, with a gleaming matte finish, not only represent
a striking design feature, but also are an integral component of the body
structure and a major contribution to the Roadster's overall safety and
structural rigidity.

    Occupant protection in the TT is not limited to two rollover bars.  Other
exemplary safety features include crumple zones at the front and rear, high-
strength side intrusion protection bars in the doors and large-volume body
sill sections.  Precisely calculated reinforcement using thicker metal in the
sill areas, and sturdy transitions at the joints between the A- and B-pillars
and the floor assembly, give the TT Roadster a torsional rigidity.  Detailed
vibration analysis and the appropriate local modifications to the body ensure
outstanding low vibration levels.

     Additional standard safety equipment includes a sturdy windscreen frame
with high strength steel inserts inside the A-pillar; rear crossmember and
rollover bars; a driver side front airbag; a passenger side airbag which may
be deactivated with a key; pyrotechnic seat belt tensioners combined with
belt-force limiters; and side airbag systems integrated into the seat backs
designed to protect the head and thorax.  For theft protection, the Roadster
has an electronic interior monitoring system that uses a pulsed radar effect
to monitor the interior for intrusion, even when the roof is lowered.

    Obviously, accident prevention is the best safety method, and the TT
Roadster hosts various technical features specifically designed to help it
avoid such hazardous situations in the first place.  The range of standard
equipment includes driver assistance systems such as the anti-lock braking
system (ABS); electronic brake-force distribution (EBD) and electronic
differential lock (EDL).  The front-wheel-drive versions have all-speed
traction control (ASR) as an additional feature.  Ventilated brake discs are
used on the front wheels and the 225-hp TT Roadster quattro has them at the
rear, as well.

    In the cockpit area, particular attention has been paid to every detail as
in the TT Coupe -- the sports steering wheel; the dashboard instruments with
matte aluminum surrounds; and the pedals and the stainless steel support for
the "dead pedal" are all design details typical of the TT.

    Additional features designed for extra comfort and convenience inside the
TT Roadster include high-grade leather seat upholstery and power folding soft
top on the 225-hp model.  Amber red leather with unique "Baseball Glove"
stitching is available in the Roadster, along with one new exterior color-
Nimbus Gray pearl effect.  Existing colors include Brilliant Black with
clearcoat, Amulet Red, Raven Black pearl effect, Lake Silver metallic and
Desert Green pearl effect.

    Roadsters have always been cars for purists.  But that no longer means
sacrificing safety and comfort.  The new TT Roadster illustrates this
perfectly.  Advanced technical design and the most dedicated attention to
detail put this newest Audi product in a strong position.

    The Audi TT Roadster and 225-hp TT Coupe are scheduled for release in May.
Both the Coupe and Roadster models are manufactured as a joint operation
between Ingolstadt, Germany and Gyor, Hungary.

See it at:
http://www.theautochannel.com/cybercast/2000autoshows/index.html?EVENTS

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