It was never our intention to turn our 2.0T into an RS replica, but the more parts we found that would fit our humble FWD coupe, the more tempted we were to go out and find something else.

So while we wanted to address the car's appearance and chassis, in particular, the TT RS parts were perfect for the job since they offered factory fit and finish and virtually no modifications were required.

With that said, the perforated leather steering wheel is probably the last TT RS item we'll fit to our car. In fact, we almost didn't use it at all but the soft leather, aluminum trim and RS badge made it too hard to resist.

Although we haven't covered it in detail yet, the Audi has Revo software to give it a bit more pep. We hope to carry out a few more engine mods as well, so since we were working on the interior, we decided to throw in one of the excellent vent gauges from P3 Cars. These monitor boost pressure as well as a raft of other parameters that make it a useful tool in any modified car. It's also ridiculously easy to fit and utterly discreet.

In fact, both jobs would take barely an hour to complete and required no special tools, provided you have Torx and Spline bits for the steering wheel removal.

Steering Wheel

The TT RS steering wheel is remarkably similar to our stock 2.0T part. However, it uses softer, perforated leather around its more sculpted rim, aluminum trim around the horn push and an RS badge, but otherwise, it's the same flat-bottomed design as the stock steering wheel.

That said, it looks and feels much better and justified the expense. It's worth nothing that if you want to save some money, you could keep your stock airbag module and fit it into the RS wheel. It fits perfectly and represents a significant saving.

The TT RS wheel is available for cars with either manual or auto transmissions, so order the one that will match your needs (the latter has shift paddles).

The installation began by disconnecting the battery and removing two trim pieces from behind the stock steering wheel. They simply push off to expose the Torx bolts underneath.

Turn the wheel 90° in both directions to expose each screw at the top of the steering cowl. Then use a T30 Torx bit to undo them because they secure the airbag module in place.

Then pull the airbag towards you and release the two wiring connectors behind it. You now have access to the main bolt that secures the wheel to the steering column. Undo it using a 12mm Spline bit.

Once you've done that, you'll notice a small notch on both the column and steering wheel. This will ensure the new wheel goes back in exactly the same position.

As you remove the wheel and refit the new one, be very careful not to turn the column or knock the pin switches on either side of the column. These cancel the indicators and disturbing them will affect their operation.

Gently push the new steering wheel into place, aligning the two notches and passing the pin switches through their respective holes. Then refit the main bolt and tighten to 22 lbf.ft.

Now take the new airbag and reconnect the two wiring harness plugs. The back of the airbag module has a locating pin at the top, which slots into a hole in the wheel. Align the pin and push the bag into place until it snaps home.

You can now turn the wheel 90° in both directions to refit the Torx bolts on the back of the wheel, securing the airbag module. Refit the trim pieces over the bolts.

With the installation complete, reconnect the battery and test the horn, volume, station and mode buttons on the spokes, as well as the shift paddles. Our car didn't require any coding and all the functions worked, but some models may require a trip to the dealer or an Audi specialist if the paddles aren't working.

The stock wheel and the TT RS replacement with its perforated leather rim, aluminum trim on airbag module and RS badging

The stock wheel and the TT RS replacement with its perforated leather rim, aluminum trim on airbag module and RS badging

Vent Gauge

We previously fitted a P3 Cars vent gauge on our 2012 BMW 335i (EC 11/13)and loved the simple installation process, clear instructions and online video, plus its selectable menu options for monitoring different vehicle paramters. So we decided our Audi TT would also benefit from the same technology.

After visiting the website and ordering the correct gauge pre-fitted into the cooling vent, we set about installing it. This operation is ridiculously easily and perfectly demonstrated in a tutorial video on the website. It's so well produced that our attempts are slightly redundant, but just in case you decided to install your vent gauge in an area without internet service, we'll point out the key stages.

We also enlisted the help of local tuner Strasse Sport from Covina, CA to get the job done. This seemed unnecessary until it came to wrapping things up, as you'll discover...

Start by removing the fusebox cover from the side of the dash using a flathead screwdriver in the notch provided. Then extract the cooling vent. Start by getting your fingers under the top left side and work your way around its circumference. It's fairly tight, so we resorted to a screwdriver for assistance, but take care not to damage the dash. When the vent is free, replace it with the P3 Cars vent. It slots into the same hole, threading the cable with it.

This cable plugs into the control module that, in turn, is connected to a plug for the OBD2 port. Plug the latter into the OBD2 port and turn on the ignition to check the system is operational. If it's working, ziptie the cables and module before tucking them into the fusebox area. Now replace the fusebox cover.

It should be as simple as that, but the size of the module, plugs and cables meant it wouldn't fit in the fusebox area. We eventually resorted to removing some of the trim from the door aperture to gain access to space behind the dash. Even then, it took longer to conceal the cables than fit the gauge. It's not an insurmountable problem but be prepared to scrape your knuckles.

The small buttons on the gauge face allow you to access the different parameters that include boost/vacuum, RPM with shift lights, coolant temp, voltage, throttle position, air intake temp, EGT, speed and even a 0-60mph stopwatch. It will record peak values and allow 15sec of playback for the chosen mode. In fact, the only parameter missing is oil temp but it does allow for external inputs if you wanted to add one. What's more, it's reading the car's onboard sensors, so accuracy is assured.

When switched off, the gauge is almost invisible. When in use, it remains discreet and the vent still functions. Compared to the expense and complexity of installing enough conventional gauges to monitor this many functions, the P3 Cars gauge is extremely compact, affordable and easy to use.

If you want to save money, you can order the gauge without the OEM Audi vent. This way the $639 price tag drops to just $389, and online instructions explain how to install the gauge into your own cooling vent. It adds a little complexity to the procedure but increases your options.

Look out for our planned engine and chassis upgrades to our Project Audi TT 2.0T in future issues.

Part Part# Supplier Price
TT RS steering wheel 8J0419091N SZE (MT)
8J0419091P SZE (AT)
Audi Accessories $1300
TT RS air bag 8J0880201N 6PS Audi Accessories $1183.80
Vent gauge P3AT3 P3 Cars $639*
*price includes OEM vent

Project TT

Click the links below to revisit our previous installments of Project TT

Part Issue Subject
1 9/12 Audi Genuine Accessories body kit and 19" wheels
2 5/13 H&R coilovers and sway bars
3 6/13 TT RS front brakes and wheels
4 9/13 TT RS front bumper and grille
5 5/14 TT RS steering wheel, P3 Cars vent gauge

Audi Genuine Accessories
Strasse Sport
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