By Khulekani Dumisa
The bakkie wars are not for the faint hearted and that is why players in that space constantly have to keep things interesting for the discerning customer. Having been around for nearly 10 years, VW Amarok introduced Amarok Dark Label special edition last year to breathe some excitement into the wide range. We got to spend time with the bakkie from Wolfsburg recently.
The Amarok Dark Label is powered by a 2.0-litre bi-turbodiesel engine with 132kW/420Nm that is paired with an 8-speed auto which sends power to all the 4 wheels via a permanent 4Motion all-wheel-drive system. The Dark Label features a locally-sourced MAXE matte black styling bar with ’Amarok‘ lettering, door handles and exterior mirrors in matte black, matte black highlight front protection grille with dark chrome lacquered ledges, tinted rear windows, blacked-out B-pillars, black side sills, ’Dark Label‘ décor film on the sides, smoked taillights and new 18-inch ’Rawson‘ alloy wheels.
Inside the Amarok Dark Label, the new black ’Greenhouse‘ headlining, Vienna leather seats, silk glance chrome air vent borders and floor mats embroidered with ‘Dark Label’. More could have been done inside to make the special edition stand out but take nothing away from the interior, it is well built, roomy and comfortable.
More features and options
Functional and standard features of the Amarok Dark Label include bi-xenon headlights with LED daytime running lights, front and rear park distance control, tyre pressure monitor, ’Plus‘ multi-function on-board computer, ’Composition Media‘ infotainment system, app-connect with voice control and multi-function steering wheel. Optional features include seat heating (winter package), increased GVM/ heavy duty suspension, rear view camera, climatronic air-conditioning, ’Discover Media‘ infotainment system (including Satnav) as well as rubber floor covering for the cab and passenger compartment.
We spent some time on the highway with the Amarok Dark Label and it is comfortable and rides mostly like a car. We even took to a mountain pass in wet conditions, still the bakkie was not deterred and offered sufficiently exciting handling. The big tired iron out any uneven surfaces in provincial roads thus providing an overall comfortable and relaxing drive.
It’s hard to believe that the Amarok has been around for nearly ten years. Tweaks over the years have made it stay fresh and relevant. The Dark Label treatment is no exception. It makes you look at the bakkie twice. Having had a go at the V6 Canyon in December, we thought we’d miss its vigour and zeal. It wasn’t the case. The 2,0 biturbo diesel engine with 132 kW of power and 420 Nm kept us entertained, and importantly never feeling without power. The fuel consumption was decent coming in 8,8l/100km which is nearly on par with the claimed 8,5l/100km.
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