2009 Audi TTS

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$16,250–$27,254 Inventory Prices
(5.0) 1 reviews
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Key Specs

of the 2009 Audi TTS. Base trim shown.

  • Body Type:
  • Engine:
    265-hp, 2.0-liter I-4 (premium)
  • Drivetrain:
    All-wheel Drive
  • Seating:
    2-4 Seats
  • Transmission:
    6-speed auto-shift manual w/OD and auto-manual
  • View more specs

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Turbo engine's power
  • Quick-shifting automatic
  • Interior quality
  • Cargo room (coupe)
  • Gas mileage

The Bad

  • No manual transmission for U.S.
  • Tiny backseat (coupe)
  • Ride can get choppy
  • Dash and door trim not up to Audi standards

Notable Features of the 2009 Audi TTS

  • New for 2009
  • 265-hp turbo four-cylinder
  • Dual-clutch automatic transmission
  • Adaptive suspension
  • Coupe or roadster

2009 Audi TTS Road Test

Mike Hanley
Audi enthusiasts know that "S" is a powerful letter in the automaker's lineup, and it's just as significant in the new TTS. An offshoot of the TT coupe and roadster, the TTS has a host of performance enhancements, like a great turbocharged engine and a special suspension setup, but U.S.-bound versions are missing the one feature they need most: a true manual transmission.

Efficient, Strong Turbo Four-Cylinder
Audi's turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder that's found in the TT is one of my favorite engines because it offers a lot of power in a small package. It's also incredibly smooth-revving, encouraging you to run it all the way up to its redline. The TTS' turbo four-cylinder has the same displacement, but it features numerous changes that affect the engine block, cylinder head, pistons and turbocharger, among other components.

The result is stronger output — 265 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 258 pounds-feet of torque at 2,500 rpm — without any loss of the smoothness that makes the TT's base turbo engine so appealing. The TTS' engine still feels strong at highway speeds, where it's able to propel the coupe forward with a degree of assertiveness that you might not expect from a four-cylinder, even a turbocharged one (Audi cites a zero-to-60-mph acceleration time of 4.9 seconds for the coupe). Despite its quickness and power, the TTS achieves impressive gas mileage for a sports car, with an EPA-estimated 21/29 mpg city/hig...

Audi enthusiasts know that "S" is a powerful letter in the automaker's lineup, and it's just as significant in the new TTS. An offshoot of the TT coupe and roadster, the TTS has a host of performance enhancements, like a great turbocharged engine and a special suspension setup, but U.S.-bound versions are missing the one feature they need most: a true manual transmission.

Efficient, Strong Turbo Four-Cylinder
Audi's turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder that's found in the TT is one of my favorite engines because it offers a lot of power in a small package. It's also incredibly smooth-revving, encouraging you to run it all the way up to its redline. The TTS' turbo four-cylinder has the same displacement, but it features numerous changes that affect the engine block, cylinder head, pistons and turbocharger, among other components.

The result is stronger output — 265 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 258 pounds-feet of torque at 2,500 rpm — without any loss of the smoothness that makes the TT's base turbo engine so appealing. The TTS' engine still feels strong at highway speeds, where it's able to propel the coupe forward with a degree of assertiveness that you might not expect from a four-cylinder, even a turbocharged one (Audi cites a zero-to-60-mph acceleration time of 4.9 seconds for the coupe). Despite its quickness and power, the TTS achieves impressive gas mileage for a sports car, with an EPA-estimated 21/29 mpg city/highway.

The TTS is offered only with Audi's S tronic six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission in the U.S. (a six-speed manual is available in other markets). There's no question it's a technically advanced transmission, and it does have some appealing qualities, but there are times when you want the simplicity of a plain-old manual gearbox, and this is one of them.

First, let's hit what's good about the dual-clutch automatic. Put it in Drive and it'll knock off quick upshifts on hard acceleration, and it also makes quick downshifts when you use the paddle shifters behind the steering wheel, or the console gear selector's manual mode. Oddly, driver-initiated upshifts feel much slower than when the car makes them for you.

If your daily drive involves a lot of stop-and-go tedium, I could see this transmission being preferable to a stick. Audi, however, makes the choice for you by not offering a manual in the States, which is something some enthusiasts won't accept. You're left to dream about what might have been.

Now for the automatic's low points: The first one is that when it's left in Drive the transmission tends to rob the engine of power by upshifting through the gears to keep the four-cylinder's rpm as low as possible. The transmission's Sport mode does a better job of keeping the engine in its power band by letting it rev, but this setting includes an aggressive downshifting program when slowing that keeps engine rpm high. That might get old in everyday driving.

Ride & Handling
The TTS comes standard with Audi's magnetic ride adaptive suspension that includes normal and Sport modes (yes, there's a Sport setting for the suspension as well as the transmission). The normal setting is fairly firm, but not overly harsh by sports car standards. The shocks, however, can be notably stiffened by selecting Sport mode. The change in the TTS' dynamics is instantaneous when you press the button to select Sport; the suspension takes on a harder edge as it transmits more road imperfections to the cabin.

The ride can get a bit bumpy on heavily rutted pavement even when using the suspension's normal mode, so that's something to consider if you live somewhere with pavement that isn't universally smooth. Even if your roads are pothole-free, I found that some concrete sections of highway made the TTS bounce up and down repeatedly, accompanied by what sounded like a bass drum solo courtesy of the low-profile summer tires, mounted on optional 19-inch alloy wheels. Activating Sport mode increased the severity of the coupe's oscillations. At 97.2 inches, the TTS' wheelbase is short. That likely didn't help matters on these concrete-slab roads.

The TTS' steering feel is classic Audi at lower speeds — it takes little effort to turn the wheel, and it turns with a smoothness befitting a high-end luxury car — but when you get above parking-lot speeds it firms up a little, which better aligns with the TTS' mission. The steering wheel feels nowhere near as weighty as the ones in BMW and Infiniti luxury coupes, but if that's not your thing, then the TTS' setup might suit you better. It's reasonably responsive, too.

Track Performance
In addition to testing the TTS on public roads, I had the opportunity to take it for a lap at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis. This four-mile track combines long straightaways, tight turns and elevation changes to make for a technical road course. With the suspension's Sport setting activated, there's still moderate body roll when cornering.

The TTS has standard Quattro all-wheel drive, but unlike some of Audi's all-wheel-drive applications, which have rear-biased torque distribution, the TTS' system has an even 50-50 split, front-to-rear. Though the TTS exhibits decent balance when cornering, it doesn't have the feel of a rear-wheel-drive sports car, which is what a rear-biased all-wheel-drive system can simulate.

The Inside
The TTS coupe looks small from the outside, but the cabin — at least the front bucket seats — are relatively accommodating. There's room for taller drivers to get comfortable, and the seats have fairly firm cushioning that provides good support — including thigh support — for longer drives. Leather and Alcantara seats are standard, but my test car was fitted with what Audi calls "baseball optic" leather seating. As its name implies, those seats have thick leather strands woven together along the sides that wouldn't be out of place on a baseball glove. This was one of the elements that distinguished the first-generation TT, which debuted for the 2000 model year, and it's still unique in 2009.

Something else you might think would be compromised in a small coupe like the TTS is visibility, but it's not bad. Forward and over-right-shoulder views are good, though there's a bit of a blind spot near the driver's head restraint when reversing.

There is a two-person backseat in the TTS coupe (the roadster is a two-seater). Like the backseat of a Porsche 911, however, if you asked someone to sit there they'd ask if you were joking. Why? The backrest is set at an almost perfectly vertical angle, and legroom is nonexistent. I'm not sure it would even be practical for children.

Despite a backseat that only a contortionist could love, in characteristic Audi fashion the TTS coupe offers quite a bit of versatility. Its cargo area measures 13.1 cubic feet, and the 50/50-split backseat folds flat with the cargo floor. With the backseat folded, the space is large enough to easily fit two golf bags.

TTS in the Market
There's a lot to like about the TTS. Its turbocharged four-cylinder is remarkably powerful and smooth, its interior is classy and unique, and its standard all-wheel-drive system distinguishes it from other sports cars in its class.

The TTS faces stiff competition from the likes of Porsche, with its Cayman, as well as BMW, which redesigned its Z4 for 2009. I haven't driven the new Z4 yet, so I can't comment on how it drives, but as of right now, if I had $50,000-$60,000 to spend on a small sports car — the as-tested price of the TTS I drove was $54,600 — I'd try to find a way to get the more expensive Cayman. It offers one of the most engaging and entertaining driving experiences around, and it comes with a manual transmission.

Send Mike an email 



2009 TTS Video

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Latest 2009 TTS Stories

What Drivers Are Saying

Exterior Styling
(5.0)
Performance
(5.0)
Interior Design
(5.0)
Comfort
(5.0)
Reliability
(4.0)
Value For The Money
(5.0)

Latest Reviews

(5.0)

Top tier car!

by Jdoggo from San Diego, CA on May 5, 2018

This car is amazing it’s quick it’s a coupe and most of all it’s affordable now! This is definitely a car you want to buy! Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2009 Audi TTS currently has 0 recalls

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2009 Audi TTS has not been tested.

Manufacturer Warranty

  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    48 months / 50,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    48 months / 50,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    48 months / unlimited distance

CPO Program & Warranty

Certified Pre-Owned by Audi

Program Benefits

Comprehensive 300+ point dealer inspection, 24/7 roadside assistance including towing and trip interruption reimbursement, 1 Year/Unlimited Miles Audi Certified pre-owned Limited Warranty coverage, transferability of the Audi Certified pre-owned Limited Warranty to a subsequent private owner, and CARFAX® Vehicle History Report.

  • Limited Warranty

    1 Year / Unlimited Miles

    1 Year/ Unlimited Miles Audi Certified pre-owned Limited Warranty features 1 Year / Unlimited Miles of warranty coverage after the expiration of the new vehicle limited warranty or from the date of sale if the new vehicle limited warranty has expired and coverage honored at over 300 Audi dealerships service centers throughout the U.S., total confidence is yours as you take the road less traveled.
  • Eligibility

    Under 5 years / 60,000 miles

    Vehicles receive a 300+ point inspection.

    See inspection details.

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The TTS received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker