2011 Volkswagen Touareg

Busting the SUV scene is Volkswagen’s 2011 Touareg: a luxury crossover SUV with a strong sense of ruggedness inside and outside. Based on the analysis of 15 published reviews, it is ranked 7 out of 18 Luxury Midsize SUVs. The Touareg now looks as elegant as before with sharper and new exterior, more spacious cabin and an all – new hybrid model. Also included is a supercharged V6 engine mated to an electric motor. This all new SUV is also lighter and more fuel efficient, without compromising its admirable off-road capability. And just like its corporate cousin-the Porsche Cayenne, it is now around 400 pounds lighter, which would mean an enhanced and sharpened on-pavement performance.

Performance

Read through the figures: under the hood is a 3.0 liter turbocharged V6 TDI Clean Diesel Engine; 280 horsepower at 6,200 rpm and 265 pound-feet of torque; 0-100km/h time of just 6.5 seconds; top speed of 60 mph; this Hybrid rates 20 city/24 highway miles per gallon and 21 combined; if you want speed and utility, look no further. It is going to be tough beating this. And all Touareg models are now equipped with eight – speed automatic transmission. The 7th and 8th gears make this SUV more fuel efficient. The 8th gear reduces engine speed by 33 percent engine, unlike the 6th gear.

Exterior

The 2011 Touareg has include five new colors: Cool Silver Metallic, Night Blue Metallic, Tungsten Silver Metallic (Hybrid only), Flint Gray Metallic and Toffee Brown Metallic. This midsize luxury SUV is available in four trims: Sport (which has an 18 inch Tacora alloy wheels), Lux (comes with 19 inch Everest wheels), Executive (equipped with Pikes Peak 20 inch wheels) and the all new Hybrid. On its upgraded exterior is a more masculine front end, which is positioned lower and is wider in size, compared to the 2010 model.

It displays new letterbox grille, taillights and slimmer headlights. Gone are the plain and clearly defined curves. The Touareg now has a more flowing appearance and low character line which add accent to the body. The profile may seem unchanged, but the sportier roof-line and the upward-arching belt line make this least changed part eye catching. And the wave-like structure of the doors and more pronounced guards that are extended out from beneath the rear quarter window give the new Touareg a more muscular look.

Interior

Technological features abound in the 2011 Touareg interior, starting with the premium RNS850 touch screen radio-navigation system. This in-board tool features a large eight inch screen, a DVD/CD player that has MP3 playback capabilities and also satellite/FM/AM stereo, a 60GB hard drive with 18GB space to upload media, all rolled into one. For travel assistance, its special navigation system can show maps and directions in a 3D view and even highlight major landmarks. The leather surfaced seats that can accommodate five passengers are redesigned to make it more spacious and comfortable. Greater legroom can now be greater enjoyed and the rear seatback can also be folded for sizeable luggage space. The new panoramic sunroof which is standard in the Lux, Executive and Hybrid trim lines is larger by 350%.

Safety

Technological advancements are also achieved in terms of vehicular safety. Take for instance the Lane Assist system that keeps this SUV on the right path and Side Assist which automatically warns the Touareg of approaching vehicles from the rear when changing lanes. Moreover, the new Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) along with Front Assist can brake the vehicle to a stop. Stability and traction control, antilock disc brakes and hill hold assist are also included. The 2011 Touareg had not yet undergone government crash testing, but with these technological features, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named it a “Top Safety Pick”. According to J.D. Power, the Touareg Reliability score is 6.0 and it also comes with a basic limited three-year/36,000-mile warranty.

Competition

You can also consider the Lexus RX 350 (MSRP $39,075; 18 city / 25 hwy) for better fuel economy rating, or the RX 450 hybrid (MSRP $44,735; 32 city / 28 hwy). The redesigned and more refined 2011 Volkswagen Touareg features an elegant and sophisticated cabin with more spacious rear seat for excellent cargo space. However, the V6 TDI diesel which requires extra cash makes this Hybrid model expensive for its class.

Overall Rating
77 out of 100

What others say:

"The 2011 Volkswagen Touareg has dropped some of its ruggedness in favor of the comfort suburban families want—but it's still not quite a rival to luxury-brand utes."Car Connection

"Despite a curb-weight reduction of about 400 pounds versus the first-generation SUV, conventional V6 Touaregs have only slightly better-than-adequate acceleration. The TDI is stronger in any situation."Consumer Guide

"Confident driving dynamics; high-class interior; impressive equipment roster; powerful and fuel-efficient powertrain options; high towing capacity."Edmunds

Specifications

General Info
Vehicle Type: SUV Base Price: $44,450.00
Fuel Tank Capacity: 26.4 gallons Miles Per Gallon: 16 city / 23 hwy
Dimensions
Length: 188.8 in. (480 cm) Width: 76.4 in. (194 cm)
Height: 68.2 in. (173 cm) Curb Weight: 4711 lbs (2136 kg)
Wheel Base: 113.9 in. (289 cm) Ground Clearance: 7.9 in. (20 cm)
Luggage Capacity: 32.1 cu ft Maximum Seating: 5
Performance
Engine: 3.6L FSI® 6 cyl, 4V, 10.6° Displacement: 194.6 cu in
Horsepower: 280 hp Max RPM: 6200 rpm
Torque: 265 lb-ft @ 3000-4000 rpm Transmission: 4MOTION® AWD system with 8-speed automatic
0-60 mph: 7.4 Seconds Max Towing Cap: 7700lbs.
Available Trims & Engine
Option:Touareg 3.0L V6 TDI® Clean Diesel Sport MSRP: $47,950; MPG: 19 city / 28 hwy
Option:Touareg 3.0L V6 TSI® Hybrid Supercharged MSRP: $60,565; MPG: 20 city / 24 hwy