September 26, 2022

A method icon when launched, the Audi TT Mk1 makes for an attention-grabbing trendy traditional coupe right this moment and one which’s accompanied by a booming aftermarket scene. Right here’s what that you must know when shopping for one.

On paper the Audi TT Mk1 was an excellent concept. Launch a sporting coupe based mostly on the VW Golf, with echoes of Beetle and Porsche 550. Badge it as an Audi – an up and coming premium model. Promote to anybody who may afford it for as a lot as they had been keen to pay. And the idea labored. Styled by Peter Schreyer, it evoked the 550 Spider and the 356 as a lot as Hebmuller Beetles and historic racing Auto Unions – an undeniably German form that managed to be retro and modern on the similar time.

Launched initially as a coupe, a cabriolet mannequin adopted for 1999 utilising the identical selection of two 1.8-litre turbocharged 4 cylinder engines, growing 180bhp and 225bhp respectively. The vary would develop once more in 2003, with the addition of a 3.2-litre V6 and an entry stage, entrance wheel drive 150bhp 1.8T.

When manufacturing led to 2006, some 275,000 TTs had been constructed. And this recognition has endured, with MK1 TTs making very fascinating trendy traditional selections right this moment.

Audi TT Mk1 Widespread Issues

  • Timing belt stretch/failure
  • Water pump failure
  • MAF sensor failure
  • Ignition coil pack failure
  • Defective switchgear

What to look out for


Primarily, the Mk1 Audi TT used engines from two engine households. The vast majority of TTs used a spinoff of the VAG 1.8-litre turbocharged 4 cylinder, whereas essentially the most upmarket fashions used a 3.2-litre V6 shared with the VW Golf R32.

The 1.8-litre turbocharged unit was accessible in three primary states of tune – a 150bhp variant with entrance wheel drive, a 180bhp Quattro and a 225bhp Quattro. It was additionally accessible as a 237bhp Sport mannequin – whereas the 150 and 180 fashions had been upgraded later in manufacturing to 163bhp and 190bhp respectively.

Examine all turbocharged fashions for white smoke and energy loss beneath acceleration, which may point out a blown turbo. This gained’t be a fast or low cost repair. Oil leaks are comparatively frequent – as is coil failure, which is able to present itself as a misfire and hesitant acceleration. We’d all the time exchange the MAF sensor after coil points, as a failing MAF sensor may cause the problems to persist after substitute of a defective coil.


Audi TT Mk1 5V Engine

Audi advisable a timing belt substitute at 80,000 miles, however they’ve been identified to fail early. We’d wish to see a receipt for a latest change, and we’d actually be seeking to change at across the 55,000-mile mark to be secure. It’s price doing the water pump and tensioner whereas the belt’s off, too. Failure may end result within the want for a £2500 engine rebuild.

The V6 makes use of timing chains somewhat than a belt, so hear rigorously for any points attributable to stretching. Rattles are unhealthy information, and might start from simply 40,000 miles. Chain substitute isn’t an inexpensive endeavor – financial institution on £1000 for a specialist to do the job. Ask in regards to the oil used – it must be Castrol 5W30, and adjustments should happen each ten thousand miles or sooner.

Audi TT Mk1 side on driving shot

Suspension, steering and brakes 

Ensure that any early examples are fitted with the spoiler, ESP system and revised suspension as per the recall. Authentic vehicles had been liable to points whereby they might snap at excessive pace, and following a category motion lawsuit, the Audi TT Mk1 was recalled. The mechanical modified had been fitted to all recall vehicles, the spoiler was optionally available however standardised on vehicles bought following the recall. We’d be cautious of a automotive with out the spoiler, because it dangers not having been recalled.

Anti-roll bar collars are product of plastic and might fracture, letting in water. Metallic replacements can be found – many have been upgraded, and it’s price checking that any automotive you view has been. Whereas checking, test for clonks and bangs – a TT isn’t a lightweight automotive, and suspension can endure put on when (as is probably going) vehicles have been pushed arduous.

Normal brakes put on shortly; they’re sourced from modern Volkswagens and have single-pot calipers. Upgrades are each accessible and customary – and can improve the worth of any automotive you view. The usual brakes aren’t additionally too good – severe drivers would improve them anyway.

There’s little to go fallacious with the steering barring the same old play within the joints, so don’t spend too lengthy checking the system over for faults which can not exist.

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Audi TT Mk1 close up of badge

Physique and trim

Panel gaps on Audi TTs are often good, however lots of these vehicles could have been concerned in accidents attributable to over-exuberant driving. Be certain they’re nonetheless as uniform as they need to be. Additionally test for put on within the door shuts, it might point out the doorways have wanted realignment after a prang.

Coupe roof rails can corrode – this was because of a producing subject, and shouldn’t be costly to type. Extra regarding can be rust to the sills or the decrease bodywork, indicating that maybe the automotive’s not as strong as you may need hoped. Alloy wheel and rear bumper injury will be attributable to poor visibility for parking – be sure you test completely and negotiate accordingly.

Cabriolet hoods can put on throughout the folds – so test completely for any indicators of harm of damage. Likewise test for put on on the bolsters of the seats – often a comparatively hardwearing leather-based, however the earliest vehicles are actually 20 years outdated and it’s inevitable that there shall be some minor points to rectify. Some vehicles had baseball model seat stitching, it’s uncommon and so don’t anticipate finding spares down the scrapyard if that is broken. Examine completely for put on to the leather-based or stitching.


Examine that the hood operates appropriately on Cabriolet fashions. There are a number of motors and several other yards of wiring right here, so points can be arduous to hint. When you accomplish that, test the inside for damp – it might be blocked drainage channels inside the roof mechanism and shouldn’t be left. If the automotive smells damp, stroll away.

Different toys also needs to work, from electrical home windows to the optionally available heated seats. Within the latter case, the weather can break contained in the seat. Folks can and do rewire them, however this is usually a hearth hazard if not completed correctly so be sure you’re proud of the work that’s been completed. Gauges and dial packs can fail – the topic of one other class motion lawsuit in litigation-heaven America – so test that all the things works correctly whenever you view the automotive.



The Audi TT Mk1 did retro design nearly earlier than we knew it was cool, and has prompted a brand new and profitable line for Audi. The TT is arguably the model’s most iconic mannequin because the Quattro, and there’s by no means been a greater time to purchase one. With scores nonetheless being damaged and secondhand spares available, it needn’t even value the earth to maintain a TT in high-quality fettle. There’s a TT for everybody – from penny pinching 150bhp to bahnstorming 3.2 V6.

Our cash would go on the one within the center, the 225 – higher economic system than the V6 with extra energy than the decrease specced 1.8Ts. Servicing prices shall be affordable too – and because the engine is by and huge shared with most medium sized VAG fashions, elements shall be simple to supply for a number of years to return. Manuals will all the time be price greater than automatics, although the DSG within the V6 is seen by some as fascinating. Leather-based trim and air conditioning are important too, although nearly all of vehicles got here with each. Cabriolets are extra beneficial, however the stiffer Coupe is extra enjoyable to drive. As ever, it’s crucial to place situation first – higher to purchase a very good 180 than a tough V6. Plus should you do choose a lower-spec engine mannequin, there’s loads of aftermarket manufacturers prepared that will help you extract extra from it.

Audi TT MK1 rear driving shot

Audi TT Mk1 costs

On the time of writing, we discovered 150bhp, 180bhp and 225bhp fashions each in coupe and roadster format on the market across the £1000-£2000 mark with round 100-150k miles on the clock and ranging levels of historical past. Mk1 TT costs appear to be at an actual low so now may be the time to purchase earlier than costs improve. Vehicles with beneath 80k miles on the clock will are available in at across the £2000 to £2500 mark relying on situation, with vehicles beneath 50,000 miles going for something from £3000 upwards.

When you fancy the full-fat V6 you’ll want round £3500+, with the bottom mileage vehicles commanding over £8000. For that cheaper price you’ll be getting an automated coupe, with guide roadsters commanding round £5000+.