Review

Volkswagen Touareg SUV

Price  £43,415 - £48,215

Volkswagen Touareg SUV

reviewed by Carbuyer

Pros
  • Smart looks
  • Luxurious cabin
  • Decent fuel economy for a big 4x4
Cons
  • Expensive to buy
  • No seven-seat option
  • Looks very similar to its predecessor

At a glance

The greenest
SE V6 TDI 204 PS 5dr £43,415
The cheapest
SE V6 TDI 204 PS 5dr £43,415
The fastest
SE V6 TDI 262 PS 5dr £45,215
Top of the range
R-LINE V6 TDI 262 PS 5dr £48,215

"The Volkswagen Touareg is a decent road car, but underneath the luxurious interior lurks the mechanicals of a serious off-road machine."

The Volkswagen Touareg shares many parts with the Porsche Cayenne, but it's significantly cheaper to buy and does without the more powerful engines that are available in the Porsche. It also competes with the Land Rover Discovery 4 and the pricier BMW X5.

Off-road toughness and on-road ability are two of the VW's key strengths. All models have four-wheel drive and there's a choice of two 3.0-litre diesel engines, producing 201bhp and 258bhp and both returning 42.8mpg fuel economy. The larger V8 TDI diesel and Volkswagen Touareg Hybrid were both dropped from the UK line-up in 2014.

The Touareg doesn’t come with the option of seven seats, but it does have a spacious and well-built interior, even if it doesn't feel quite as upmarket as the Porsche Cayenne's. The seats are comfortable, the interior is quiet and the boot is well designed, making it easy to load and unload.

If you’ll be spending all your time on the road, there are two trim levels to consider: the basic SE line and the slightly more luxurious R-Line. Both offer plenty of kit as standard – a DAB digital radio, sat nav, climate control and lots more.

However, if you plan to use your Touareg off-road, we'd recommend the Escape, as it comes with clever electronics and protection for the underside of the car that should make it even more capable in rough conditions.

Prices start at around £43,000 for the less powerful diesel engine in SE trim. Upgrading from SE to R-Line will cost you an extra £3,000. The Escape model comes in at a bit under £45,000. All models of Touareg offer strong resale values, although not quite as strong as the Discovery and Cayenne.

MPG, running costs & CO2

3.6 / 5

Clever BlueMotion technology ensures the Volkswagen Touareg isn't too expensive to run

Engines, drive & performance

3.7 / 5

Based on the Porsche Cayenne, the Volkswagen Touareg is good to drive, with powerful diesel engines

Interior & comfort

3.6 / 5

A comfortable and well built interior allows the Volkswagen Touareg to compete with more upmarket rivals

Practicality & boot space

3.9 / 5

The back seats in the Volkswagen Touareg are easy to fold for maximum carrying capacity

Reliability & safety

3 / 5

The Volkswagen Touareg feels solidly built, but there are a few question marks over VW reliability

What the others say

3.8 / 5
based on 3 reviews
7 / 10
The seats are big, the engines sound a long way away and most luxuries are to hand. The only problem is a shuddery ride.
4 / 5
While it's true the Touareg isn’t as capable as the Land Rover when the going gets tough, the VW does have hill decent control and switchable driving modes - ‘on-road’ and ‘off-road’. 
4 / 5
For starters there's a punchy but smooth V6 diesel mated to an eight-speed auto tiptronic gearbox. It's probably not the most enticing combination you’ve read about on this website, but engine and transmission work together very well, and can hustle the two-ton Touareg along with plenty of vigour.

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What owners say

4.0298245614035
4 /5 based on 57 reviews
70%
 people would recommend this car to a friend
Last updated
8 Dec 2014
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