The next generation Volkswagen Touareg has been spied testing ahead of its mid-2010 launch.
The new car will not be radically different in appearance, the main changes happening under the skin, although it will have a noticeably sleeker front end to aid aerodynamics.
Expect the snout to take cues from the new Golf, Polo, and Scirocco, with long, slim headlights. Its undisguised centre section give the best clues to its new shape, with a clean, uncluttered look.
The big news is that new Touareg is expected to be significantly lighter as the company seeks to counter claims of large 4x4s being too inefficient for modern day use.
A weight saving of around 150-300kg has been mooted as a target, although the higher target may be only achievable on base models that will be offered with only two-wheel drive. The lightest current Touareg, the 3.6-litre petrol V6-powered SE model weighs 2238kg.
VW sources also suggest that a third row of seats could be offered as an option, to address criticisms that the car isn't as practical as some rivals. This is likely to lead to the car having slightly longer wheelbase; the current model is 4754mm long.
Engines are expected to include updated versions of the 3.6-litre V6 and 4.2-litre V8 petrol units currently available, plus at least two revised turbo-diesel offerings.
A hybrid VW Touareg is also being developed. It will use the supercharged 3.0-litre V6 currently used on the Audi S4 and A6, with the electric motor sitting between the transmission and the V6.