By James Bergeron
2009 Audi TTS RoadsterDay 1:
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If I were to pick a car to be the perfect winter run-about, I suspect it would have some bits in common with my tester for this week. It’s too bad you (the reader) have already seen the title and pictures of this week’s car or I could have you guessing — so without further ado, this week’s test vehicle is the Audi TTS Roadster! But back to my analogy of things I’d like to have in a winter runabout.
For one, it should be all-wheel drive because honestly, it just makes winter a playground for any true driving enthusiast — in the Audi TTS Roaster; check. My runabout would ideally have heated seats (check), it would have stability control (check), and traction control, (check — and both defeatable I might add). My ideal winter runabout would also have air conditioning with climate control (check), and a great stereo for those days where you will inevitably be stuck in traffic (check).
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Not-required-but-nice-to-haves include power windows and locks (check), and of course, a small size to fit into the shrinking parking lots in the winter (check). Well, it seems like the TTS is an ideal winter runabout — but what about the other side of the coin — things you may not want in a winter runabout?
Things like very little ground clearance (check), large stiff tires with unforgiving sidewalls (check), stiff suspension with a setting to make it even stiffer (check), little to no trunk space for recovery and safety items (check) — and last but not least, a convertible roof, because, honestly, how often do you dream of “dropping the top” when it’s minus 40 degrees (check)?
So it’s a mixed bag. On one hand, the TTS is the best winter runabout one could ask for, while on the other, you would be completely bonkers to drive this to work when you have a 4×4 truck sitting in the driveway (check) and the weather man calls for temperatures well into the negatives with the possibility of snow and ice. I’m sure my neighbours already think I’m loony; I’ll spend the balance of the week gauging if the rest of the city thinks I am as well. Or, perhaps, the TTS will be the ultimate winter driving machine.
2009 Audi TTS Roadster
MSRP as tested (excluding destination): $63,550
For more information on Audi and the TT visit Audi Canada