Audi TT to retire after current generation?

Audi's top executive hinted the TT's future looks grim.

The Audi TT might not be long for this world. The third generation of the company's design icon could be the last because sales are dropping, and executives are embarking on a cost-cutting campaign.

"That's a very good question. I think there's a future for an [Audi] icon, but I don't know if it's a TT. My heart bleeds when you ask that question," replied Audi boss Bram Schot when British magazine Autocar asked him whether we'd see a fourth-generation TT. He didn't confirm the TT will retire, but he certainly didn't tell the publication the nameplate has a bright future.

Many will be saddened if the TT retires, but few will be surprised. Though it looks good, and it's a blast to drive, it competes in a segment of the market that's shrinking. Its position as a design icon might not be strong enough to save it, because Audi -- like most major car brands -- is investing a substantial amount of money into the development of electrification technology.

"Audi has to be really prominent in future, but electrification has to be financed. I cannot afford to be in every country, in every segment," Schot explained.

Without going into details, he added the TT's spot in the Audi line-up could be filled by another car. "I've got some things cooking which could replace TT, though not necessarily directly," Schot hinted. He didn't talk about the rumors claiming Audi will turn the TT into a four-door coupe aimed directly at the Mercedes-Benz CLA.

Autocar believes the current TT (pictured) -- which was just updated -- will remain on-sale through at least 2022.

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