When we reviewed the updated Audi TT S, we couldn’t help but feel a sense of finality. Audi was, at the time, known to be mulling over the future of the compact coupe.
And now, we know exactly what will happen to it. At the German company’s annual general meeting in Neckarsulm this week, the end of the TT as we know it was confirmed. It will be replaced but by a fully electric vehicle.
Bram Schot, Chairman of the Board of Management at Audi AG, has this to say:
“We now decide at an earlier stage which ideas from our innovation exchanges we want to implement – and which not. Because focusing also includes leaving things out. The Audi TT, for example. For two decades, we have had this young, emotive sports car in our product range: as a coupe and as a roadster…In a few years, we will replace the TT with a new emotive model in the same price range: with an electric car.”
Beyond that, no further details were given. The EV replacement may not even be a coupe - previous reports had suggested that the next TT would be a saloon, although that’s something Audi subsequently denied.
With the TT having just been facelifted, it at least will be kicking around in its current form for another few years yet. Even the inline-five-powered TT RS, which we tested this week, can be sold until at least January 2021 thanks to its new petrol particulate filter.
But how about the TT’s big brother, the R8? It’s been widely expected that it too will disappear and return as an EV, but according to Schot, its future is unknown at this stage.
“As I said, focusing also means leaving out. For example, the R8 sports car. Do we need a successor with a combustion engine? Does this fit in with our vision? The discussion will give us an answer to that,” he said.
The “discussion” may involve the plans of Audi subsidiary Lamborghini, which is currently looking to hybridise its next generation of supercars to allow it to retain naturally-aspirated V10 and V12 engines.