VW unveils 2018 Touareg 23 | 03 | 2018

    VOLKSWAGEN HAS UNVEILED its third generation Touareg, ahead of going on-sale at Scottish dealerships in the summer, priced from around £50,000. (Watch the video of the new 2018 VW Touareg)

    The latest version of VW’s flagship SUV is, according to the German giant, the most technologically advanced model it has ever produced. In addition to debuting VW’s latest 15-inch Innovision Cockpit infotainment system, the new Touareg is also more efficient as a result of a range of new V6 and V8 engines. Ultimately, the range will also include a plug-in hybrid model.

    VW has yet to confirm the spec levels which will be sold in the UK, but I suspect it’s safe to assume it’ll include VW’  familiar R-Line and Elegance trims. (Related: Roadtest — VW Polo SE 1.0TSI)

    Based on the same MLB platform as the Audi Q7 and Bentley Bentayga, the 2018 Touareg has grown. It’s 44mm wider and 77mm longer, but sits marginally lower than the model it replaces. One of the major spinoffs from the increase in size is more stowage space in the boot, up by 113 litres to 810 litres with the rear seats in place.


    But despite its dimensional growth, the latest model has actually shed 106kg in weight, thanks to increased use of lightweight aluminium in its construction. In turn, that has also contributed to improvements to the new Touareg’s performance and fuel economy. (Related: Roadtest — VW T-Roc 1.0TSI)

    When the SUV goes on-sale in Scotland in the summer, buyers will be restricted to the choice of one engine: the 282bhp 3.0-litre V6 turbodiesel. Mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox as standard his sends power through VW’s 4MOTION all-wheel drive system.


    The engine range will be increased in the autumn, with the arrival of two additional engines. In addition to a lesser-powered 228bhp 3.0-litre turbodiesel, there will also be a 336bhp 3.0-litre turbo petrol. And while the blistering 417bhp 4.0-litre V8 turbodiesel will arrive towards the end of the year, VW has yet to confirm a launch date for the plug-in hybrid Touareg.

    The new model benefits from rear-wheel steering, which improves manoeuverability at low speed, and stability at high-speed. For the first time, air suspension — which can increase the Touareg’s ride height by 70mm to further improve off-road performance — has also been added.


    The options list also includes a new off-road pack. In addition to adding under body protection, the pack also includes extra driving modes and a larger fuel tank. And if you plan to cross rivers, you’ll be pleased to learn the new Touareg’s wing depth has increased by 80mm to 570mm. As for doing, it’ll haul up to 3.5 tonnes via a new retractable tow bar.

    But it’s inside the cabin where the biggest changes and improvements have taken place. Not only has the cabin been completely redesigned, but it hosts a new infotainment system.


    The 2018 Touareg is the first VW to be fitted with the company’s new Innovision Cockpit. This comprises VW’s now familiar 12-inch digital instrument display with a huge 15-inch touchscreen mounted on the dash. (Related: Order books open for VW up! GTI)

    If you’re a lover of push-buttons and twirly knobs, then look away now. The Innovision Cockpit is used to control all of the car’s major functions and replaces virtually every physical button on the dashboard.


    It also features a WiFi hotspot that allows up to eight devices to be connected at one time, and is compatible with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Tick the option box, and you can also have a driver’s head-up display.

    As if that wasn’t enough, VW’s two 12in and 15in screens actually work together to create a completely digital control interface. It’s fully customisable, and comes compete with menus and displays that can be tailored to suit individual tastes.

    Externally, the front of the new Touareg is dominated by a sizeable chrome grille which blends into the new LED Matrix headlamps; each houses 128 individual LEDs.

    Related: Roadtest — VW Touareg V6 TDI

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    Jim McGill

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