The Touareg is a mid size crossover SUV that has been produced by Volkswagen since 2002. The Volkswagen Touareg Crossover evolved as part of a joint project between German auto giants, Porsche, Audi and Volkswagen with the aim of jointly developing a sports station wagon that would possess all the style and the ability of a pristine sports car.
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From this unique group- action Porsche got their Cayenne, Audi their Q7 and Volkswagen their Touareg. Each similar in many ways and different in others. The cooperation didn't end at the development stages, evidenced by the fact that all Volkswagen Touaregs, Porsche Cayennes, and Audi Q7 are produced at the same plant in Eastern Europe. For those who ever wondered, the Tuareg SUV earned its title from a North African nomadic tribe, the Touaregs who were renowned for their ability to travel long distances, carrying heavy loads on their backs and requiring little rest and succor.
After going through a wide series of updates, a second generation Volkswagen Touareg was released in early 2010, and with just a few minor changes here, has remained much the same for 2011 and 2012.
For 2012, the Series Four Volkswagen Touareg Crossover SUV comes with a choice of three engines- a 3.6 liter six cylinder producing 280 horsepower and 265 pound per feet of torque, a 3.0 -liter hybrid V6 supercharged engine, when acting with its integral electric motor will produce 380 horsepower and 428 lb-ft of torque, and lastly a 3.0 liter six cylinder TDI® diesel producing 225 horsepower and a noteworthy 406 pound per feet of torque. Each engine variation comes with an eight speed automatic transmission and an all wheel drive (AWD) system as standard.
Trade reviews tend to be very positive regarding the Touareg's eight speed automatic transmission with shifts that are so smooth they can barely be felt. Off the road or in difficult slippery conditions, the 2012 Touareg copes well despite the fact that Volkswagen's transmission is set very high. However the SUV seems to cope thanks to a combination of highly compliant suspension and high ground clearance. All in all, the Touareg provides tremendous road holding abilities and ride dynamics for a car that weighs in at 6305 lbs with its steering reaction being particularly acute.
Volkswagen's decision not to include a third row with the Touareg Crossover SUV may have driven off a few potential buyers, but those who stayed around for the ride don't appear to be regretting it . The ability to seat five people in expansive comfort as well as a cargo capacity of 71 cubic feet with the back row seats folded and 32 cubic feet with them down appears to be adequate compensation. Five seats or not, the Touareg will comfortably haul a trailer weighing 7,700 pounds, leaving most of its competitors far behind.