Volkswagen has given its Touareg SUV a sharper look and enhanced it technically in all areas. Features of the new Touareg generation include a redesigned front and rear, new driver assistance systems such as Automatic Post-Collision Braking System as standard, a new generation of the ACC adaptive cruise control, new online services, appreciably more fuel-efficient and in some cases more powerful V6 TDI engines with SCR catalytic converter and EU6 certification and an improved layout of the suspension.
In terms of technical enhancements, particular focus has been placed on the V6 TDI engines, as in Europe more than 90% of all Touareg sales are of models with one of the two V6 TDI engine capacities on offer. Both six-cylinder engines have been modified and upgraded by adding an SCR catalytic converter.
With SCR, the amount of NOx in the exhaust is significantly reduced. Due to the SCR catalytic converter, the Touareg 4MOTION V6 TDI BlueMotion Technology meets the EU6 emissions standard.
Also new on the V6 TDI is a coasting function. While the vehicle is coasting, the standard 8-speed automatic transmission is disengaged in order to utilize the kinetic energy during periods where no acceleration is required and thus to reduce fuel consumption still further.
Aerodynamic refinements to the vehicle body and underbody, plus the introduction of new tires optimized for low roll resistance, also have a fuel-saving effect: consumption on the 150-kW version (204 PS) has been reduced from 7.0 to 6.6 liters of diesel per 100 km (from 33.6 mpg US to 35.6 mpg US); this equates to a reduction in CO2 from 184 g/km to 173 g/km.
The advances are clearer in the case of the larger of the two V6 TDI engines, the power output of which has been increased from 180 kW (245 PS) to 193 kW (262 PS): despite this added power, its consumption falls from 7.2 (32.7 mpg US) to 6.6 l/100 km).
In the case of the 'Terrain Tech' version—the Touareg with special off-road applications and a four-wheel drive system with low range set of gear ratios, designed among things for particularly demanding off-road conditions – there is an improvement from 7.3 to 6.9 l/100 km (34 mpg US).
Updated suspension and new assistance systems. The standard steel-spring suspension has been optimized, with improvements including even more agile steering and extra comfort. Available again as an option for the Touareg is an air suspension system, with which ground clearance can be increased to as much as 300 mm on off-road terrain. Meanwhile, at higher speeds—140 km/h (87 mph) and above—the air suspension automatically lowers the vehicle’s body.
Infotainment with new online services. In combination with the RNS 850 radio/navigation system and mobile phone preparation, the Touareg will for the first time be available with mobile online services. These will include a Point-of-Interest (POI) Search via Google; map display provided by the Google Earth mapping service; the Google Street View function; and Online Traffic Information.
Launch from autumn 2014. The new Touareg is initially being launched in Western Europe this autumn in diesel (V6 TDI and V8 TDI) and hybrid (V6 TSI plus electric motor) models. Orders are already being taken in Germany. Launches subsequently follow in Russia (end of 2014) and North America and Asia (early 2015). In those markets, Volkswagen will also be offering the Touareg once again with V6 and V8 gasoline engines, as it has traditionally done (along with the hybrid and diesel options).