From £34,885
Fast, and good to drive, but vastly overpriced and beginning to show its age

Our Verdict

Volkswagen Touareg
The Mk2 model, also based on the Porsche Cayenne, is lighter, roomier and more economical than the first

The second-generation Volkswagen Touareg has gone on a diet and become more efficient

What’s new?

This is Volkswagen’s new range-topping Touareg, the R50. Its party trick is an uprated version of familiar 5.0-litre V10, which wrings a massive 627lb ft of torque and 345bhp from the ageing pump duse engine; an increase of 74lb ft, 36bhp and £3885 over the previous range-topper, the Altitude.

What’s it like?

Surreal. Stamp your right foot to the floor and you will roar past 62mph in 6.7 seconds – faster than you would in a Focus ST. In a car that deserves its own magnetic force field, weighing in at 2602kg, that feels similar to taking a step forward and discovering that the ground has dropped by two foot more than you were expecting.

Get your head around the sheer pace, and you find that the R50 has minimal body roll, and a ride that will cushion you from most road surfaces. Equally, turn-in is direct and the steering responds quickly and predictably, all of which makes this is a very comfortable and surprisingly nimble drive.

If you ignore the massively optimistic £61,990 price tag and abysmal mpg, disadvantages are that the six-speed auto can be caught out if you really hustle along, and tyre noise can get wearing – as could the gruff chugging from under the bonnet.

Should I buy one?

The sense of empowerment that comes with driving the R50 should be enough to entice the small number of buyers VW is hoping for. But there is a vast of array of more up-to-date competition that offers all the benefits of the Touareg R50 for five figures less. We suggest you look there first.

Join the debate

Comments
12

24 April 2008

'Solid'. That's about all you can say about the Tourag that's remotely interesting. But the LR Discovery does solid, and then some! Even in R50 guise the Tourag doesn't have a line or a panel or anything in the interior that raises a heart beat. Yes the V10 Diesel can pull trains and the R50 can out-sprint all the hottest of hatches but really VW if you're going to produce a wolf don't dress it so drably in sheeps clothing!

24 April 2008

Is this really a Pump-Duse engine design and not a common-rail? I thought the only Pump-Duse engines left in the VW range were the 1.4TDi & 1.9TDi now that the 2.0TDi is now being phased out.

25 April 2008

Think it is still a PD engine. To the best of my knowledge, the 5l V10 diesel is in essence two 2.5l 5cyl diesels put together. The 2.5l engine is used mainly in light commercial vehicle applications such as the VW Transporter where it comes in 130 and 170bhp flavours; it's not used in any other VW group cars.

25 April 2008

[quote JJBoxster]

'Solid'. That's about all you can say about the Tourag that's remotely interesting. But the LR Discovery does solid, and then some!..

[/quote]

Land Rover Discovery? Useful off-road, but on-road (where 90% + of users drive their 4x4s) the "boring" Tourag pretty much outdrives the horrendously over-weight and overrated Discovery.

Oh crap! I just remembered; that James whatshisname fellow that posts here, drives a Discovery. I think I'd better go hide.

25 April 2008

Overdrive - I'd respect your choice but of the 2 I'd take the Disco even if it is a ton overweight as hustling a 4x4 wouldn't be the reason I'd buy one. Having said that if I made choice the new BMW X6 would come top. Probably out-hustle a Tourag but at least it looks something like it goes which is my point.

25 April 2008

Fair enough JJ. I see your rational.

25 April 2008

[quote Overdrive]

Land Rover Discovery? Useful off-road, but on-road (where 90% + of users drive their 4x4s) the "boring" Tourag pretty much outdrives the horrendously over-weight and overrated Discovery.

[/quote]

You're wrong.

25 April 2008

[quote James Read]

[quote Overdrive]

Land Rover Discovery? Useful off-road, but on-road (where 90% + of users drive their 4x4s) the "boring" Tourag pretty much outdrives the horrendously over-weight and overrated Discovery.

[/quote]

You're wrong.

[/quote]

Won't be the first time........... and very probably not the last.

25 April 2008

LOL ! Nice one, Overdrive.

27 April 2008

Looks good in deep pearl blue IMO.

Have driven a few standard ones and they certainly handle a lot better than the disco and refinement is in a different league as well.

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