I figured out the Rinspeed Riddle

I posted about this Rinspeed that had not-quite-Audi-TT headlights.

It set me off on a whole deep dive. I was checking 90s/00s Audis, concepts, all of it. I couldn’t accept that I was unable to find what Audi they were from, and they definitely were NOT TT headlights. The curve on the outside for the wheel arch wasn’t right nor was the curve on top, and though someone said they may be modified, you don’t modify a headlight in that way. Sure you could, but if you’re going to go that far you may as well manufacture your own!

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The problem is, the car had so much shit in it for 2001, from cameras to a leaning body like a motorbike to sustainable materials and whatnot. Nobody talks about the headlights, the information does not exist on The Internet.

But then I saw the pic above, and everything changed. The clouds parted. And I have two theories now that I believe to be true:

  • They didn’t actually change the curve on the outside edge or top, they covered it. That part of the headlight is actually hidden behind the bodywork of the car
  • They did modify the headlight, in that they manufactured a new plastic shroud that sits inside the headlight. This changes the shape of the inside of the light, and covers part of the indicator strip

TT headlight for reference. The indicator strip is covered a bit on both sides on the Rinspeed by that silver shroud, replacing the black one on the TT.

And a 300ZX where someone has dismantled the headlight and painted the shroud inside to be body color. They also may have added the shroud as it’s a late model HID shroud which was never available on cars delivered with hamburger badges. Just an example of how the shroud inside a headlight may be modified or replaced with relative ease.

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And there we have it. Whoever said modified TT units, they were right.

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