German tuner MTM actually built this TT-RS program for the Audi TT-RS back in 2010, but what we didn’t know was that their Taiwan division, aptly called MTM Taiwan, also worked on their own program.
The comprehensive list of modifications done on the German sports car is pretty impressive, especially the performance upgrade that includes a plethora of new components and tune-ups.
The objective for this project was to give the TT-RS a significant uptick in power and MTM Taiwan achieved that by installing a new turbocharger, tweaking the ECU unit, and adding spark plugs, air catalysts, and a competition air filter. In addition, MTM also installed a Haldex ECU (Generation 4) controller that enables the sports car to transfer torque faster to the rear wheels while also allowing the driver to select drive modes (race, street, and sport).
With all these upgrades in tow, MTM Taiwan was successful in giving the TT-RS’ turbocharged 2.5-liter engine a sick output of 472 horsepower at 6,600 rpm and 63.7 kgm (461 lb-ft) of torque at 4,100 rpm, up from 340 HP and 330 lb.-ft. of torque. The new output also nets a 0-62 mph time of just 3.4 seconds, which is a full 1.2 seconds faster than the standard model.
With the added power on the car, MTM took the steps to improve the TT-RS’ braking system with four-piston calipers with 376mm cross-drilled rotors. Aerodynamically, the project includes a new diffuser, an MTM carbon rear spoiler, and a new set of 20" MTM bimoto-forged alloy wheels.
There are a lot of new car scams in the world and most of them are initiated by the new car dealer, not the buyer. A group of buyers flipped the script on several Los Angeles dealerships, by using fake identities to purchase 20 cars and were shipping them to Hong Kong and Vietnam to sell them for two to three times their U.S. value.
It was a laundry list of luxury vehicles, such as a $280,000 2010 Ferrari 458 Italia, an Audi Quattro, 2012 Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4, along with several Mercedes, Lexus, Infiniti, and BMW SUVs among others. For some reason, the thieves even threw in a Toyota Tundra.
The one that got these fraudsters busted was the Ferrari 458 Italia, as Ferrari fitted the supercar with a GPS system as standard, which Ferrari used to track the car once they found out they were defrauded. This led U.S. Customs and the California highway Patrol to conduct a full investigation and find the cars on a ship that had already pulled away from the port.
Needless to say, that ship was forced to come back and all but four of the cars were recovered. The four non-recovered cars are due to be shipped back by Vietnamese Customs.
According to the report, had the fraudsters not gone after the Ferrari, chances are they would have gotten away with this scam and made a ton of money in the process. The total amount of the vehicles seized by U.S. customs is estimated at $1.5 million, which would have pulled in around $3 million in Hong Kong and Vietnam.
We are still trying to figure out what in the world a Toyota Tundra was doing in the mix with all of these high-end luxury cars. We also wonder which thief drew the short straw and was stuck going to the Toyota dealership to pick this thing up?