Twin test: Audi TT vs Mercedes SLK

Before you say we’ve lost our noodle, think about it for a second. These cars may be very different from each other, but their purpose remains the same. And if you delve deeper, you’ll realise each of them can put as big a smile on your face in its own way. The SLK is an all-out roadster, it’s charismatic, it’s sexy and it has 300 horses under the hood. It is the stepping stone into Mercedes’ world of open-top motoring.

The Audi TT brings to the table practicality with its coupe body style, permanent all-wheel drive and a farmer’s market price tag. Lately, Audi has gone against the norm and taken out the V6 in favour of a four-pot. Sacrilege, you cry? We did too, but the TT is a feisty little thing as we found out.

The road to Lavasa is a special one. The winding stretch that takes you to the picturesque hill station has been not only one of our favourite shooting locations, but also a proving ground to put the brochure to the test. Of course, it only comes in second after our favourite, the road to Amby Valley, which is featured elsewhere in this issue with a rather brightly coloured, peculiar looking BMW. But make no mistake, the Lavasa road is a challenging piece of tarmac and especially beautiful in the rains, with lush mountain sides and waterfalls around every corner. It is a fitting place to drive these two cars whose brochures go on and on about sporty pretensions.