2011 Volkswagen Touareg To Launch in January at Detroit Auto Show

November 12, 2009

Introduced as a 2004 model, the Touareg sport utility vehicle was Volkswagen's first foray into SUVs, and its most expensive vehicle at the time. Now VW will unveil a redesigned, second-generation 2011 Volkswagen Touareg at January's Detroit Auto Show.

The Touareg shares a basic platform with the high performance Porsche Cayenne SUV, itself being renewed for 2011, and the Audi Q7, which uses a longer wheelbase for greater interior room. All three vehicles are being redesigned at the same time.

2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI

2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI

2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI

2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI

2010 Volkswagen Touareg Hybrid

2010 Volkswagen Touareg Hybrid

The 2011 Touareg will include a hybrid model in the lineup, its first, along with a TDI clean-diesel model. TheCarConnection drove the current 2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI last May, and liked its torque, equivalent to the V-8 version, and the fuel economy.

That will make the Touareg one of only a very few vehicles to offer gasoline, diesel, and hybrid variants to U.S. buyers. Another is the Mercedes-Benz ML sport utility, which will launch its ML450 Hybrid version next month as a 2010 model.

In our Bottom Line review of the 2009 Volkswagen Touareg, we liked its:

  • Smooth ride
  • Attractive, well-appointed interior
  • Refinement and quiet
  • Top safety protection

But we weren't so fond of the:

  • Disappointing back-seat and cargo space
  • Lack of maneuverability for parking
  • Low fuel economy (gasoline engines)

Now that Volkswagen may bring the Phaeton luxury sedan back to the U.S. market, and offers the 2010 Volkswagen Tiguan compact crossover below the Touareg, the next generation of VW's first sport utility could well get more luxurious than the current model.

And, we hope, more reliable; the Touareg has not done particularly well in third-party quality and reliability surveys.


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