Review

Volkswagen Amarok SUV

Price  £25,054 - £38,146

Volkswagen Amarok SUV

reviewed by Carbuyer

Pros
  • Spacious interior
  • Excellent build quality
  • Big load area
Cons
  • Car's size can be intimidating
  • Difficult to park
  • Uncomfortable suspension

At a glance

"The Volkswagen Amarok blurs the lines between builder's wagon and family car, with off-road ability, a big load bed and a spacious five-seater interior."

Pick-up trucks used to be a relative rarity on UK roads, reserved for owners who needed them for work duties rather than as an everyday car. But models such as the Mitsubishi L200 and Nissan Navara changed that, and the Volkswagen Amarok is the German company's answer to the Japanese favourites.

In fact, the Volkswagen is probably even more usable day-to-day than the Mitsubishi. As you’d expect of a Volkswagen, it has a well built interior, which is also very spacious. The load bed is huge and is the main reason why the Amarok appeals to everyone from builders to sporty types and families. The Amarok is still subject to the usual tax breaks that apply to other commercial vehicles, too.

It's available with a choice of two 2.0-litre diesel engines, which offer the effortless power you need if you’re carrying heavy loads, although they can’t match the fuel economy of the latest diesels you’ll find in modern SUVs, mainly due to the car's size and weight.

If you’re after an alternative to a large SUV, don’t choose the Volkswagen Amarok. It may be a luxurious and good-looking pick-up, but it's still a commercial vehicle and feels unrefined compared to something like a Hyundai Santa Fe. If you’re buying it to use as a workhorse, then we’d definitely recommend it, because it's nice to have creature comforts in a practical and rugged package.

All models of Amarok – from the basic Startline through to the Trendline and the top-of-the-range Highline – come with grippy four-wheel-drive, so the Volkswagen is a competent off-roader. Plus, there's the usual array of standard VW kit along with various options to make life that bit easier – and more comfortable – on the road.

MPG, running costs & CO2

2.5 / 5

In modern terms, neither of the Volkswagen Amarok diesel engines is hugely economical

Engines, drive & performance

2.4 / 5

Heavy weight compromises speed and handlingHeavy weight compromises the speed and handling of the Volkswagen Amarok

Interior & comfort

2.7 / 5

The VW Amarok features highly adjustable seats, but the engines are noisy and the suspension is bouncy

Practicality & boot space

4 / 5

The VW Amarok boasts an interior that’s spacious enough for five people

Reliability & safety

3.5 / 5

Standard VW quality makes the Volkswagen Amarok more car-like than some of its rivals

What the others say

3.5 / 5
based on 2 reviews
4 / 5
"The Volkswagen Amarok was voted the Best Pick-Up of 2013 at the Auto Express awards, offering SUV-rivalling quality and equipment."
3 / 5
"The Volkswagen Amarok won’t be enough to tempt people away from a conventional 4x4 or crossover, but it does compare well to rival pick-ups."
Last updated 
23 Dec 2014

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