What is it?
This is the hybrid version of the new Volkswagen Touareg. It is the range's most intriguing model, even though it won't be the best-seller. It's the only petrol Touareg that'll make it to the UK, yet it has the lowest CO2 emissions and the highest power output of a range that also includes 3.0 V6 and 4.1 V8 diesels.
At the hybrid's heart is a 328bhp, supercharged 3.0-litre V6 petrol engine coupled to a 45bhp electric motor. They work in parallel so, like a Lexus RX450h, the engine can be uncoupled from the drive to shut down altogether.
Unlike the Lexus, which has an electric motor for the back axle, the Touareg's engine/motor combination both have a say in all four wheels, via an eight-speed automatic gearbox and a Haldex four-wheel drive system.
That new transmission contributes much to Touareg's headline-grabbing 200kg weight loss between generations. A heavier-duty option, called 4XMotion, is available on the V6 TDI only; it has a low ratio and a centre differential lock for serious off-road use.
Another big weight saving comes on steel-sprung versions, whose suspension is 47kg lighter than before. Optional air-sprung cars, like our test car, lose 20kg underneath. There's about the same as from the body itself, which is a significantly overhauled first-generation Touareg shell rather than an all-new architecture.