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Details firm on next-gen Amarok

Volkswagen continues to drip-feed info on its dual-cab ute, due here in 2023

3 Aug 2022

VOLKSWAGEN Commercial Vehicles has announced line-up and specification details of its second-generation Amarok ute, which will start rolling off the South African assembly line in October in order to build up sufficient inventory for anticipated demand when it officially goes on sale in Australia early next year.


The all dual-cab, all 4x4 range will open with the eponymous ‘Amarok’ grade – replacing the Core – with a 125kW/405Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine, paired to six-speed manual or automatic transmissions, each running part-time four-wheel drive.


Even at base trim, the Amarok will come with a 10-inch touchscreen infotainment unit with DAB+ digital radio and wireless phone charging, an 8.0-inch digital instrument panel rear differential lock, 17-inch alloy wheels, electrically folding door mirrors, LED headlights, tow bar with brake controller and tyre pressure monitoring.


Standard safety and driver assist tech includes adaptive cruise control with lane-keep assist, speed sign recognition with intelligent speed limiter, rear parking sensors and reversing camera, plus automatic emergency call function. All Amaroks also come with side airbags front and back in addition to the front-centre, driver’s knee and frontal airbags.


Mid-tier Amarok Life variants are equivalent to the outgoing Sportline, offering a more powerful biturbo version of the same engine developing 154kW and 500Nm, with part-time four-wheel drive and a 10-speed auto.


These get body coloured bumpers, mirrors and door handles, leather steering wheel and gear shifter trim, carpet floor coverings with floor mats, upgraded cloth upholstery, heated door mirrors with puddle lamps, greater front seat adjustment, a powered tailgate lock, an audio upgrade from four to six speakers and rear privacy glass.


Safety gets a boost with blind-spot monitoring, front parking sensors, auto wipers and headlights, LED fog lights, electronic park brake and an auto-dimming interior mirror. A pair of front tow hooks are also provided.


The Amarok Style (previously Highline) provides an entry point to V6 turbo-diesel power with outputs of 184kW and 600Nm, with a 10-speed auto and permanent on-demand four-wheel drive. The 154kW diesel four-cylinder with part-time 4x4 is also available on this variant.


Standard on this variant are Matrix LED headlights, 18-inch alloys, a chrome rear bumper with step, stainless steel sports bar and bed liner. Bigger 12-inch screens for infotainment and instruments get native sat-nav, there is dual-zone climate control, heated front seats with 10-way electric adjustment on the driver’s side and premium ‘ArtVelour’ upholstery that can optionally be upgraded to leather.


A security alarm, keyless entry and start, 360-degree cameras and automated parking are also included, along with an insulated windscreen and ambient interior lighting.


Further up the Amarok pecking order are PanAmericana (replacing Canyon) and Aventura variants, again offering V6 power, a 10-speed auto and permanent 4x4.


An optional 2.3-litre turbo-petrol four is also offered on these variants, producing 222kW and 452Nm, sharing the 10-speed with permanent 4x4 combination as the V6.


The black front bumper, mirrors, door handles, sports bar, rear step and wheels (with all-terrain tyres) identify the PanAmericana, which also has a spray-in bed liner and soft tonneau cover plus Cricket leather upholstery on the seats (both heated and 10-way electrically adjustable at the front) as well as the door trims and dashboard.


An extra two speakers for the audio system, a black headliner, LED taillights, roof rails are also standard on the PanAmericana.


Flagship Aventuras have 21-inch alloys, a sailplane, powered roller tonneau, chrome bumpers, mirrors, door handles, side steps, and a Savona leather interior.


In addition to the VW-exclusive Moroccan Blue metallic paint finish, the Amarok will be available in Frozen White, Agate Black metallic, Blue Lightning metallic, Carbonized Grey metallic, Lucid Red metallic, Moondust Silver metallic and Diffused Silver metallic exterior colourways.


South African production of the new Amarok reduces shipping time by four weeks compared to the previous-generation vehicles that mostly came from the company’s Argentine factory. This, coupled with the greater frequency of ships between Africa and Australia, should ensure steadier supply.


A team of 20 VW factory designers, working out of Melbourne penned a new Amarok, giving it a distinctive, purposeful and squared-off look.


The Amrok has a 350kg static roof load capacity and can tow up to 3500kg braked while payload goes up to a maximum 1160kg depending on variant.


Six driving modes are provided: Normal, Eco, Slippery, Snow/Sand, Mud/Rut, Tow/Haul.


At the reveal last month, the new Amarok was promoted by VW as bigger, punchier and offers more payload than its predecessor with the benefit of extensive Australian development.


The new Amarok’s styling follows the current squared off trends but is by far a copy of any other vehicle in the segment.


Despite Amarok sharing the same genes as Ford’s Ranger, VW has gone to great lengths to ensure the Amarok has distinctive styling inside and out, although its powertrain and underpinnings are borrowed from Ford. Essentially the two vehicles are twins-under-the-skin.


Frontal styling holds a little simpatico with the previous Amarok’s look, this time with more modern LED headlight hardware and widely pumped-out wheelarches that contribute to a more dominant stance.


At 5350mm in length, the new Amarok is 96mm longer than its predecessor and the wheelbase has been stretched by 173mm. This equates to more space inside, VW says, especially for second-row passengers.


VW says the new Amarok was “designed and conceived in Germany and Australia”, but the versions we get will be produced at Ford Motor Corporation of Southern Africa’s plant in Gauteng, South Africa.


Australia is the second biggest market for Amarok (behind Argentina), so it is  unsurprising that VW conducted local testing and development for the next-gen’ model right here in Oz.


According to VW, supply constraints should not affect new generation Amarok availability thanks to its production site in South Africa

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