Volkswagen Touareg SUV
Price £43,605 - £48,405
- Solid, well built cabin
- Smart, restrained styling
- Decent fuel economy and CO2
- Quite expensive to buy
- Seven seats not available
- Feels a bit dated overall
At a glance
"The Volkswagen Touareg is a decent road car, but under the luxurious interior lurks the mechanicals of a serious off-road machine."
The Volkswagen Touareg is the largest SUV in the VW lineup and is a close relation of the Audi Q7 and Porsche Cayenne. Unlike those two cars, the Touareg isn’t quite as plush inside and it's not available with the more powerful engines found in the quickest Q7 and Cayenne models. Buyers looking at a car of the Touareg's style and size should also consider the BMW X5 and Land Rover Discovery.
All Touaregs come with four-wheel drive and it's a competent, rugged car if you ever find yourself off-road, even if it can’t match the Discovery in this regard. The car is available with a 3.0-litre turbodiesel engine, either with 201bhp or 258bhp and, despite the differences in power, both claim fuel economy of 42.8mpg. Volkswagen used to offer the Touareg with a bigger V8 diesel and as a hybrid, but both of these models have now been discontinued in the UK.
The Touareg is a five-seater only, which means it lacks the versatility of rivals that can accommodate seven. Though this may steer some buyers to other cars in the class, the Touareg is spacious inside and feels very well built. The VW may not be as luxurious as the Q7 and Cayenne but it's comfortable and refined, with plenty of space for luggage.
There are three trim levels to choose from when buying a Touareg called SE, R-Line and Escape. The first two are intended for buyers who’ll use the car predominantly on the road and the Escape model is more about off-road use. All three models feature digital radio, sat-nav and climate control but the Escape trim adds enhanced protection for the underneath of the car plus some electronics that improve the car's performance on rough terrain.
An entry-level Touareg costs just over £43,000, while the Escape model is around £2,000 more and the sporty R-Line sits at the top of the range at £48,000. The car will hold on to its value reasonably well – only luxury cars such as the Land Rover Discovery and Porsche Cayenne perform better in this regard.
Clever BlueMotion technology ensures the Volkswagen Touareg isn't too expensive to run
Based on the Porsche Cayenne, the Volkswagen Touareg is good to drive, with powerful diesel engines
A comfortable and well built interior allows the Volkswagen Touareg to compete with more upmarket rivals
The back seats in the Volkswagen Touareg are easy to fold for maximum carrying capacity
The Volkswagen Touareg feels solidly built, but there are a few question marks over VW reliability