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Beijing show: Audi sports TT offroad concept

Hint hint: Audi's first TT SUV was presaged by technical development chief Ulrich Hackenberg (pictured) at the Geneva show last month.

TT brand branch-out confirmed as Audi puts the sport into SUV with offroad concept

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Audi logo21 Apr 2014

AUDI has evolved its coupe-like Allroad Shooting Brake concept from January's Detroit motor show into a more practical, almost production-ready five-door SUV design study called the TT offroad concept.

The chunky hatchback confirms Audi's move to expand the TT brand beyond sportscars, presaged in hints dropped by Audi technical development chief Ulrich Hackenberg at last month's Geneva show, as reported by GoAuto at the time.

Unveiled at the Beijing show over the weekend, the TT offroad concept provides Audi with a close to production-ready answer to the BMW's coupe-styled X4 that will launch Down Under later this year.

Speaking in Beijing this week at the TT concept’s world premiere, and echoing comments he made at Geneva, Mr Hackenberg said the vehicle “provides a glimpse of how we might imagine a new model in the future TT family”.

The Audi AG board member for technical development went on to describe the concept as combining “sporty genes of the TT with the strengths of a compact Audi SUV”.

Apart from the move from three to five doors, the TT offroad steers the Allroad concept's rugged yet luxurious look in a sportier direction with less chrome trim, the roof rails removed and larger 21-inch wheels in an airy five-spoke design.

Both concepts share a broad protective grey plastic panel along their flanks with e-tron branding ahead of the rear wheel arches denoting the plug-in hybrid drivetrain and a TT-eqsue circular aluminium caps for the fuel filler and electric charging socket.

However things get a bit different from there on, with the Allroad's squared-off shooting brake profile and thick C-pillars supplanted for a swooping coupe style window line and an almost bustle-back appearance to the tailgate.

Whereas the Allroad's tailgate sacrifices practicality for styling by only opening above the rear lights, the TT offroad gives more of an impression of how a production version would look, with the tailgate shut lines dissecting the lights and plunging lower toward the bumper.

In contrast with this are concept-like flush fitting door handles, similar to those on a Jaguar F-Type.

Like the Allroad, the TT offroad's interior is clearly based on that of the production coupe that will hit Australian showrooms early next year, featuring the same digital instrument panel and distinctive circular air vents with LCD displays integrated with the rotary controls.

The TT offroad deploys the same 300kW/650Nm plug-in hybrid drivetrain as the Allroad Shooting Brake, returning identical claimed fuel consumption of 1.9L per 100km.

But the TT offroad's party trick over the Allroad is wireless inductive charging, which Audi claims takes about the same time as charging using a cable.

It is more convenient than plugging in as charging automatically starts when the car is parked above the charging plate, disengages when the battery is fully charged, is unaffected by weather and can be interrupted at any time by the driver.

No weight figures are supplied for the concept – which is dimensionally similar to the Q3 – but a claimed 0-100km/h sprint time of 5.2 seconds points to increased mass over the 1600kg Allroad concept, which dispatches triple digits in a swift 4.6s.

Bearing the TT moniker means the SUV styled concept is biased toward on-road dynamics rather than off-road ability but its increased ground clearance, short overhangs and all-wheel drive lend themselves to light off-road work.

Back on the highway, the TT offroad features safety technologies claimed to be close to production, which aim to reduce or at least reduce the severity of side-on collisions and help the driver surf a wave of green traffic lights by advising the best speed to drive in order to match signal sequences.

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Motor industry news

GoAutoNews is Australia’s number one automotive industry journal covering the latest news, future and new model releases, market trends, industry personnel movements, and international events.