1 Jul 2011
THE second-generation Volkswagen Touareg grew in size over its predecessor but was up to 90kg lighter and more aerodynamic.
In addition to the weight saving, more efficient engines with eco-friendly BlueMotion technologies like idle-stop and brake energy recuperation plus a new eight-speed ZF automatic transmission contributed to a 20 per cent improvement in fuel efficiency and emissions over the outgoing model.
Comprehensively equipped across the range but with some wallet-busting high-technology options such as a driver assistance package comprising several traffic-monitoring gadgets designed to reduce the chance of a collision, air suspension and a comfort package featuring ventilated memory seats and four-zone climate control, the Touareg became a formidable contender in the luxury SUV segment.
Although it offered the size and spaciousness to compete with some of the largest luxury off-roaders, the Touareg was priced in-line with mid-sized entrants, meaning it offered good value for money.
Drivetrains included VW Group’s 3.0-litre turbo-diesel V6 in 150kW (150TDI) or 180kW (V6 TDI) tune plus a V6 FSI 3.6-litre 206kW naturally aspirated petrol V6.
The higher-powered V6 was also offered with the option of a hard-core 4XMOTION variant with locking diffs, dual-range transmission and larger fuel tank.
All Touaregs came equipped as standard with leather upholstery, alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, air quality detection with automatic air recirculation, front and rear parking sensors, multi-function colour touch-screen display, Bluetooth, MP3/WMA, USB, auxiliary and SD-card inputs, steering-wheel audio and telephone controls, auto-dimming mirror, heated electrically adjusting and folding door mirrors with automatic kerb view when reversing, split-fold rear bench with recline function, centre arm-rest and load-through facility, auto wipers, heated washer jets, auto headlights and front foglights.
The entry-level 150TDI rode on 17-inch alloys, and manually adjustable (including height) front seats. It was not available with air suspension, comfort option or sports interior packages.
All other variants got 18-inch alloys, automatic tailgate, eight-inch touch-screen satellite-navigation with 40GB hard drive and DVD player, electrically adjustable front seats with pneumatic side bolsters and the Nappa leather upholstery.