2022 Audi TT RS

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2022 Audi TT RS Review: Little Lightning Bolt

Audi loves to build oddball cars; the RS6 Avant is a gloriously rapid station wagon the likes of which we rarely get to see, and the Audi TT RS is just as unique with its 394-horsepower, 2.5-liter five-pot engine emanating sounds you'd think could only come from a Group B rally car. This feisty little monster is now in its last year on the market in the US and celebrates it with a limited-run TT RS Heritage Edition. The TT RS goes up against some stiff competition, including the fantastic Porsche 718 Cayman, but with AWD - a front-biased system at that - is the TT RS a worthy competitor or simply out of its depth? In this Audi TT RS review, we see what makes this car so unique and why you should buy one because, in an age when its future is uncertain, you really should.

Read in this review:

  • Exterior Design 9 /10
  • Performance 10 /10
  • Fuel Economy 8 /10
  • Interior & Cargo 9 /10
  • Infotainment & Features 9 /10
  • Reliability 8 /10
  • Safety 9 /10
  • Value For Money 10 /10
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2022 Audi TT RS Changes: What’s The Difference vs The 2021 TT RS?

2022 will be last model year for the TT RS and to celebrate it, Audi is launching a TT RS Heritage Edition of which only 50 cars will be made - ten each in five unique Audi heritage color schemes: Alpine White with Ocean Blue leather, Helios Blue with Diamond Silver leather, Stone Gray with Crimson Red leather, Tizian Red with Havanna Brown leather, and Malachite Green with Cognac Brown leather. It will run on unique 20-inch alloy wheels and have a sport exhaust, OLED tail lights, Heritage Edition logos etched into the rear quarter-glass window, and a speed limiter increased from 155 to 174 mph. The normal TT RS continues unchanged.

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Pros and Cons

  • Characterful five-cylinder engine
  • Supercar-like performance
  • Premium interior
  • AWD traction
  • Lots of new standard features
  • Not as luxurious as some competitors
  • Ride is firm
  • The price keeps creeping higher

What's the Price of the 2022 Audi TT RS?

Depending on the configuration, the cost of the Audi TT RS will vary moderately, and good second-hand deals can be had. Still, spec and mileage will play a significant role in determining the price. Audi will let you have a TT RS for an MSRP of $73,200, excluding tax, registration, and a destination charge of $1,045. That puts the RS in an awkward position, as it costs almost $13,000 more than the base Porsche Cayman and even $700 more than the Cayman S. Fully loaded, the TT RS will cost close to $80k. The new Heritage Edition is even more expensive that a fully loaded normal TT RS at $81,450, but it does have extreme exclusivity on its side, with only 50 cars produced.

2022 Audi TT RS Trims

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
2.5 TFSI quattro
2.5L Turbo Inline-5 Gas
7-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
2.5 TFSI quattro Heritage Edition
2.5L Turbo Inline-5 Gas
7-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
See All 2022 Audi TT RS Trims and Specs

Handling and Driving Impressions

Far from being a straight-line dragster, the Audi TT RS has been set up to hug the road and melt faces through the corners. Its stubby dimensions are complimented by standard adaptive magnetic dampers and quick steering that produces a driving experience that feels planted and agile. The quattro system sends most of its power to the front in normal driving conditions, giving it a predictable feel, but as soon as things get turned up, the system sends some love to the rear, changing the dynamics of the vehicle significantly.

The TT RS is comfortable enough around town, but your average driver will eventually start to complain about low-speed bumps. For those who take their driving seriously, the optional sport suspension setup will perform better than the adaptive system but comes with an even harsher ride. The fact that the RS rides on standard 20-inch wheels doesn't make things better. Speed is scrubbed off by massive eight-piston calipers in the front and offers fantastic feel. This sports coupe is possibly one of the best point-and-shoot cars out there, and very little will keep up with it in tight canyon roads, but the RWD Porsche Cayman provides substantially more driver involvement. The Heritage Edition adds an extra thrill in that its standard sport exhaust brings the tuneful melody of the five-cylinder engine to the front row of the choir - and it never hits a flat note.

Verdict: Is the 2022 Audi TT RS A Good car?

Building a fast car has become somewhat formulaic in recent years. Manufacturers stick to tried and tested recipes, and while the end result is usually impressive, a lot of new sports cars lack the soul of older, more raw cars of the 2000s and earlier. This leads us into the 2022 Audi TT RS, an AWD turbocharged Group B city-coupe that will eat your Camaro for lunch and return better fuel economy at the same time. What makes the TT RS so great is partly its 2.5-liter five-cylinder engine, which adds so much character, but also the fact that it is comfortable, economical, and somewhat practical, all while being comically fast. The RS might not be loaded with the most advanced features, but the 2022 model is better than ever - and your last chance to get one before it's put out to pasture.

What Audi TT RS Model Should I Buy?

Presuming you want to spend more than $8,000 extra and you get your order in on time, you might be the lucky owner of the very rare 50-units-only TT RS swansong cars, the Heritage Edition. You will certainly be the owner of a valuable little piece of history. Other than this limited-run model, there is only one car to go for, and we'll tell you why you should go for the TT RS in general. The first reason is simple: that 2.5-liter five-cylinder turbocharged engine adds so much character to the RS and is unlike anything on offer from its competitors. It also endows the TT RS with near supercar levels of performance. Secondly, the TT RS is a well-rounded car: it's both styling and comfortable, returns good gas mileage, and the trunk is actually usable. Sure it costs a fair amount more than some of its competitors, but with so much character, it is hard to ignore. Give it a bright splash of paint and the TT RS is ready to go as soon as you are. This year is your last chance to get one.

Check out other Audi TT Styles

2022 Audi TT RS Comparisons

Audi TTS Coupe Audi
Audi R8 Coupe

2022 Audi TT RS vs Audi TTS Coupe

Audi offers three flavors of TT, with the TTS being the middle child. This sports coupe starts at $60,200, making it $13,000 cheaper than its more powerful sibling. Only true Audi fans will be able to tell the difference between the two, with the TTS getting a set of 20-inch ten-Y-spoke wheels, adaptive suspension, and most of the same exterior color options. The most significant difference comes in the performance of these two cars: the TTS's turbocharged 2.0-liter four-pot engine produces only 288 hp and 280 lb-ft and is 0.8 seconds slower to sixty. Despite lacking the character of the RS's five-cylinder engine, the TTS will return better gas mileage. The interior shares many of the same features, and obviously, both offer the same room and trunk space. The TTS is worth considering if you're not looking for an all-out sports car, but just a lively everyday driver's car.

See Audi TTS Coupe Review

2022 Audi TT RS vs Audi R8 Coupe

It's only natural that these two cars will be compared by Audi fans, despite the glaring differences in price and performance. The Audi R8 is a Lamborghini-powered V10 supercar That goes for a starting price of $148,700. You can buy nearly two TT RS cars for that money, but there's a good reason for that price gap. This mid-engined supercar features a 5.2-liter naturally-aspirated V10 engine sending 562 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels via a seven-speed automatic transmission. The quattro model takes those numbers to 602 hp and 413 lb-ft while dusting off the zero to sixty sprint in as little as 3.2 seconds thanks to the additional AWD, on its way to a top speed of 205 mph. For $75k less, the RS will do the sixty sprint only 0.4 seconds slower, which is a pretty good deal, and it has semi-usable rear seats. The TT RS is the less serious car but still offers more performance than most people will ever need at half the price, and you also get a usable trunk. Give us the TT RS for the week and an R8 for the track.

See Audi R8 Coupe Review
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