By Amanda Mfuphi
Last year my editor got to spend time with the flagship of the Volkswagen range, the Touareg Executive, and he was thoroughly impressed with the Touareg Executive R-Line’s offering on technology, safety and power. I must admit, I was a bit envious the keys did not land on my desk at the time. As luck would have it, the VW Touareg Executive R-Line made its way back to our garage and the keys landed on my desk. To make it even sweeter, the VW Touareg Executive R-Line came back with the Black Style Package that made the Touareg sexier and more aggressive.
As a refresher, the Touareg is currently in its third generation and is the most technologically advanced VW on the market. Touareg plays at the top of the large premium SUV market and competes with the likes of the Mercedes-Benz GLE, BMW X5, Volvo XC90, Audi Q7, just to name a few. Having spent a few days with the Touareg, I found it to be a worthy competitor in the arena standing out on design, technology, luxury, practicality and drive. Pricing may also be a secrete ace in its arsenal.
The Black Style Package is only available on the Executive model at an additional cost of R43,400 and it is worth it if you ask me as it adds to the already fine look of the VW Touareg. It just makes the car appear sexier and more aggressive. What does the package come with? The Black Style Package adds blacked out chrome elements to the Touareg Executive R-Line model, which include a large black grille with R-Line insignia, black roof rails, gloss-black side mirror housings, black air intakes with fins and black 21-inch “Suzuka” alloy wheels. The large black grille is complemented by the IQ Light Matrix LED and daytime running lights. Whilst not scientific, we noticed that the Touareg “Black Edition” turned a few heads when we had it on test. This was no doubt due to the black elements added to its looks.
The interior is spacious and of good quality with a sufficient luxury and premium feel. The interior does have a few black hard glossy plastics on the dashboard and door panels but the good news is that those hard plastics are in areas that the driver will seldom touch. You sort of have to go out of your way to find them. For most parts, the interior is dominated by leather which gives it a premium feel. The interior is also boosted by interior lighting which makes the car feel like a moving spaceship at night and gives it added character and sophistication.
Adding to the futuristic theme of the cabin is the fully digital “Innovision Cockpit” comprising a 12-inch instrument cluster and a 15-inch centrally mounted display. On the tech and safety side, the Touareg boasts an impressive array of technology and driver assistance systems which improve safety. These features include a wireless charging pad, Apple CarPlay, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitor, lane keep assist and a night vision camera. The night vision feature provides an added layer of safety at night as it detects pedestrians and livestock that may not otherwise be easily detected.
Overall, the cabin feels luxurious and spacious. The boot space is also very generous coming in at 810 litres of space.
The Touareg is powered by a 3.0 TDI V6 engine with 190 kW of power and 600 Nm of torque. The power is delivered via an efficient 8-speed automatic transmission to all wheels thanks to the VW 4Motion all-wheel drive system. The engine is refined and perfectly matched to the equally smooth 8-speed auto gearbox which appears to deliver the right amount of power and torque in a scarily accurate fashion. Although large, the Touareg felt very comfortable to drive and at no point did it feel heavy or underpowered. At every destination, you are likely to get praises from passengers for a plush ride thanks to the air suspension which helps cushions occupants from road imperfections. The cabin is also well insulated from exterior noise. You actually end up forgetting that you are driving a car with a powerful diesel engine. The fuel consumption gods also look fondly on the Touareg with the car returning an average fuel consumption of 6.8L/100km during our time with it, which was comprised of a mixture of city and highway driving.
Overall, I was equally impressed with the VW Touareg and would personally choose it over its other more expensive premium rivals. The Touareg impresses on technology, safety, luxury, practicality and power.
The VW Touareg 3.0 TDI V6 Executive retails from R1,354,500. The Touareg comes standard with a 5 year/100,000km Maintenance Plan, 3 year/120,000km warranty, 12-year anti-corrosion warranty and space saver spare wheel. Service Interval is 15,000km.
Leave a comment