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Road Test: MTM TT-RS
One of MTM’s latest programs is for the Audi TT-RS. The tuner unveiled the package in October 2009 and we had a closer look in the backyard of one of Germany’s biggest car makers. One whose production includes a series starting with a M. Exactly! Munich was the place to be and the Allianz arena – home to FC Bayern Munich – the scenery of our road test.
You may remember that we drove the standard TT-RS a couple of weeks back. Exactly, the Daytona Grey version we drove before. Built around the heritage of the 1980s Quattro, Audi created a vehicle capable of showing off and leaving us with that desirable feeling. Maybe it isn’t a complete sports car smashing the main competition from Stuttgart, but we think that it definitely deserves the RS-badge.
So, having found out what makes the TT-RS such a great car, could MTM build on the areas that the standard car falls short on? Given that MTM founder, Roland Mayer, was a part of the original Audi Sport team that ran the legendary Quattro, we went to MTM’s Wettsetten headquarters with high expectations.
On paper the MTM TT-RS builds significantly on the standard car. Next to the maximal stage of 424bhp – tested here -, MTM has two stages of 404 and 408bhp available. Stage 3 gives the 2.5 TFSI 5-cylinder engine 84bhp more output and an increase of torque of 110Nm up to 560Nm at 4800rpm.
The standard model is fast, the MTM TT-RS is even faster. The difference isn’t noticeable without a clear comparison, but a gain of 0,4 seconds has been achieved on a sprint from 0-100km/h (60mph). You reach 100km/h in 4,2 seconds and the acceleration stops at an unlimited top speed of 297km/h (184mph). 17km/h (10mph) higher than any Audi dealership can offer you!
The increased feeling of power in higher gears and lower revs is the main difference with the standard package. The ‘lazy’ throttle response at crushing speeds in fifth and sixth gear vanishes after the MTM upgrade. Sprints between 120-160km/h or 160-200km/h are a piece of cake. Rapid accelerations can be performed without shifting down. This is clearly an excellent improvement over the standard car.
But the MTM TT-RS isn’t solely about power. Take a look at the MTM bi-moto rims, available in 19 and 20 inch with suitable 20mm and 30mm spacers. To complement these there’s also the option of Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 265/35 ZR 19 tyres and a brake kit – 380×34mm drilled with eight pistons callipers.
On our test car the race track-biased Pilot Sport Cup tyres proved a bit uncomfortable higher speeds. The car also rides a bit firmer due to a new set of springs, but never bumpy. Luckily, MTM also offer more ‘normal’ street tyres which are available on request, hopefully this will make the car a little more useable on a day-to-day basis.
MTM also offer an exhaust set-up which we weren’t able to test. That wasn’t too much of an issue though as we love the sound that the standard car makes with the ‘sport’ button engaged.
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Well, if we are honest, the MTM TT-RS still isn’t the ultimate sports car we hoped for. For pure driving pleasure, it still fails to surpass the driving characteristics of the Cayman (S). But we were pleased with several of the upgrades that improved incrementally on the TT-RS’s weaker points.
The increased power definitely fixes the acceleration and cruising at higher speeds. As far as the set-up of this specific car goes we reckon that MTM have improved the race track characteristics a great deal. The brake kit, lowering of the suspension and the Pilot Sport Cup tyres are the best ingredients for any owner looking to use their car for trackdays.
However, using the RS with this setup in your everyday life creates an improved awareness in bad weather conditions and an uneasy ride at higher speeds. The rims are a matter taste and the exhaust could be an excellent addition to the car, but we haven’t got a clue what it sounds like…