Four years after the introduction of the second Generation series and after some 720,000 units delivered world-wide in the past ten years, the succesful Volkswagen Touareg, born in 2002, is ready for a mid-life redesign, new materials plus improved driver-interface inside and updated technology under the bonnet.
The latest Touareg development will be unveiled at Auto China 2014 opening its gates to the public in Beijing next week.
Deliveries will start in few months, this summer.
The top ten key improvements outlined by the maker are:
New front and rear styling;
Bi-xenon headlights standard in all versions;
Standard automatic post-collision braking system to avoid secondary collisions for all V6 TDI versions;
Interior features new leather colours, accents, buttons/controls and exclusive white illumination of controls;
V6 TDI (European version) fulfils EU6 emissions standard with newly developed SCR-DPF catalytic converter;
All Touareg models have coasting function as standard;
Mobile online services such as "Google Earth™ mapping service", "Google Street View™" and "Online traffic information" launch this autumn in Europe;
New colours and new wheels (up to 21-inch);
New R-Line packages add dynamism to exterior and interior;
Fuel consumption reduced by up to six per cent.
The all-wheel drive Touareg is available – depending on the sales region – as a model with a turbo diesel (V6 and V8 TDI), petrol (V6 and V8 FSI), turbocharged petrol (V6 TSI) or Hybrid (V6 TSI & electric motor) drive system. The V6 engines come with an 8-speed automatic gearbox. All engines have a stop-start system as standard; they also utilise regenerative braking to recover kinetic energy.
In Europe, Volkswagen will also be offering the Touareg Hybrid, combining the output of its 245 kW (333 HP) V6 TSI (turbocharged direct petrol injection engine) with a 38 kW (52 HP) electric motor. When the two drive sources are in boosting mode (both in full action), the total output car reach 279 kW (380 HP) with the maximum torque up to 580 Newton metres.
In all-electric driving – with zero emissions the Touareg can drive at speed up to 50 km/h.
Despite its overall weight and outstanding power, the Touareg Hybrid claims an average fuel consumption of just 8.2 l/100 km (equates to 193 g/km CO2) a new benchmark among fully-fledged off-road SUVs with a petrol engine according to Volkswagen.
The fuel savings have been achieved through a series of improvements focusing on this precise mission, starting from extensive aerodynamic improvements (such as air inlet openings in front, modified door mirror caps, new wheel spoiler), tyres optimised for low rolling resistance and standard 8-speed automatic gearbox optimised for low friction.
Fuel consumption is also reduced by an optimised stop-start system and by the regenerative braking function and the coasting function (until now only available with the Touareg Hybrid) that is a standard for the V6 versions. Now engine is stopped at speeds under 7 km/h, instead of at zero speed.
How the coasting function works? As soon as the driver releases the accelerator pedal, the program decouples the engine from the gearbox and it does it at speeds up to 130 km/h, so it can be used in motorway driving as well.
The resulting benefit is a 6% reduction in fuel consumption, and emissions, on average.