2012 Volkswagen Touareg Diesel Review | Edmunds.com

2012 Volkswagen Touareg Diesel

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Volkswagen Touareg Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 3.0 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain All Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 8-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 225 hp @ 3500 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 19/28 mpg
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2012 Volkswagen Touareg

  • Delivering a surprising level of luxury, the 2012 Volkswagen Touareg is a serious competitor among more established high-end marques.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Confident driving dynamics; high-class interior; impressive equipment roster; powerful and fuel-efficient engine options; high towing capacity.

  • Cons

    No third-row seat; spongy brake pedal feel; upper trims get costly.

  • What's New for 2012

    After a redesign last year, the 2012 Volkswagen Touareg returns with only minor changes to trim level content.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (10 total reviews)  |  Write a Review


The best suv !!! nothing

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Vehicle: 2011 Volkswagen Touareg

I have owned my Sport TDI SUV since new. I have driven it for 28,000 miles and have not had one problem with it. Truly an outstanding SUV. Build quality is top notch. Feels very solid and safe. Steering is tight, suspension is firm yet soaks up road bumps. Handling on the most curvy roads is amazing. Diesel engine is very smooth, surprisingly quiet and very powerful. Accelerates like a rocket. 80mph feels like only driving 50, without any strain on engine, while getting 30mpg!! I set the speedo alarm at 80mph, and it routinely alerts me. A great feature on this SUV!! Seats are very comfortable, Nav. and voice commands easy to operate. Great sound system. VW hit a home run! Best SUV!!!



2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Great car. technology features not

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Vehicle: 2011 Volkswagen Touareg

I've had my 2011 Touareg TDI for 1 year. Overall, great experience. I'm an Audi loyalist, yet my VW TDI is a favorite. My Touareg has blemishes. I'm 6+mo. into trying to get my Bluetooth fixed. A VW factory engineer confirmed mine isn't usable. Call recipients can't hear me. On any iPhone (3, 3G, 4, 4S) it is not usable because it picks up excessive road noise (VW didn't QA test iPhones?). VW USA and my dealer have been lackluster in support. I was told by VW's Executive Care team that I will have to pursue other means like BBB and CA Attorney General to fix this because VW USA doesn't have a trend of this as a problem. Apparently, I'm the first. So great experience with a major blemish



11 of 11 people found this review helpful

Wow!!!

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Vehicle: 2011 Volkswagen Touareg

My familiy and I have owned our 2011 VW Touareg TDI Lux for 5 months now and all I can say is what an incredible car. First off, we were OK with the 19 MPG city rating, and because we live in the hills, we were expecting less. BUT, we are actually averaging 23 miles per gallon without any highway driving. I would not be surprised if somone who's commute consists of 35-65 mph flat roads could average over 50 mpg. This really is an incredible machine. The overall build quality is very solid, you always feel safe! The interior has ablselutely no flaws and the panoramic sunroof is incredible. If you ane in anyway remotely considering the Touareg, you will not be let down. We love our Touareg TDI



9 of 9 people found this review helpful

Value with style

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Vehicle: 2011 Volkswagen Touareg

Was in the market for another SUV, yet wanted something different, not cumbersome nor boxy. Previously had an 07 BMW X5 - liked the car, yet did not like performance. With gas prices fluctuating high/low, I considered the diesel. Drove the BMW diesel, yet it was $9k more than the VW. My car is new <300 miles, yet in town I avg 19.5 and Hwy 26 mpg. As the car engine breaks in and I get my foot off the pedal, I know mileage will improve. Seats are very comfortable, interior is well designed and Navigation interface works very well. The LED headlights are distinctive and the back end of the Touareg is in my opinion...nicer than Porsche



11 of 14 people found this review helpful

'11 touareg tdi hits almost

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Vehicle: 2011 Volkswagen Touareg

We took delivery of our new '11 TDI Lux on 12/9/10, and my wife and son want to drive it more than their own cars ('08 GTI and '02 525i wagon). It's quiet, comfortable, beautiful inside and out (what a sunroof!), has a great nav system and electronics package, great power (can't wait 'til summer to tow our boat), and is getting 25+ mpg! It passed its snow test with flying colors, and the handling is fantastic. The only negatives are price ($55K) and lack of cargo space, but we knew what we were getting into there. Five adults and all their stuff plus some food gets pretty tight, but if you don't mind a car-top carrier it would be a great answer. Check it out if looking for a new small SUV!



4 of 5 people found this review helpful

Touareg best i have owned

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Vehicle: 2011 Volkswagen Touareg

I have owned many cars, trucks and SUV's over my lifetime, including luxury brands from Audi and Acura, this is the best vehicle yet. The build quality, handling, engine performance/mileage are all great, best in class. I have owned this for two months and I am averaging 22mpg in city driving, with excellent acceleration and engine smoothness. The technology features are intuitutive for most, but there is still a learning curve. DVD player in glove compartment a plus.



Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 19
  • cty
/
  • 28
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs

Full 2012 Volkswagen Touareg Review

What's New for 2012

After a redesign last year, the 2012 Volkswagen Touareg returns with only minor changes to trim level content.

Introduction

When you think of luxury brands, Volkswagen probably doesn't produce much of a blip on your radar. The 2012 Volkswagen Touareg, however, might change your mind. With a range of powerful engines, a driving feel that instills confidence and an interior that rivals those of its German brethren, the Touareg might just have you saying, "This is a Volkswagen?" Considering that the Touareg shares some of its underbody structure with the more upmarket Porsche Cayenne, perhaps its ability to fight above its weight class should come as no surprise.

Like other luxury SUVs, the 2012 Volkswagen Touareg provides a variety of choices for prospective buyers. Under the hood, you can choose between a plenty-capable gasoline V6 engine, a burly yet economical TDI diesel or a Hybrid model that delivers on its promise of V8-like performance with V6 fuel economy.

On the inside, even base-model VW Touaregs have cabins that are on par with those from established luxury makes like BMW and Lexus. There's an abundance of rich wood, metallic accents and high-quality materials; you'll also find lots of up-to-date electronics and entertainment features. However, there's no third-row seating, and cargo capacity is middling at best.

To the Touareg's credit, it holds its ground, despite competing with a very impressive group of rivals. Of course, if you must have a vehicle with a luxury badge, you'll probably want to check out the BMW X5 and the redesigned Mercedes-Benz M-Class. Both offer diesel engine options, just like the Touareg. On the hybrid front, the Lexus RX450h is a notable bargain when you consider the Touareg Hybrid's $60,000 price tag. Thankfully for anyone shopping this segment, there's really no loser in the bunch.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2012 Volkswagen Touareg is a five-passenger midsize SUV that's available in four main trim levels: Sport, Lux, Executive and Hybrid. All but the Hybrid can be had with either gasoline V6 ("VR6") or turbodiesel ("TDI") V6 power.

The Sport comes well-equipped with 18-inch wheels, bi-xenon headlights, foglights, roof rails, a power liftgate, cruise control, dual-zone automatic climate control, eight-way power/heated front seats, leatherette upholstery, Bluetooth and an eight-speaker sound system with touchscreen control, a six-CD changer, satellite radio and iPod integration. Adding the optional navigation system also includes a rearview camera.

The Lux has all of the above equipment plus 19-inch wheels, a panoramic sunroof, heated sideview mirrors, walnut cabin accents, leather upholstery, 12-way power front seats (with power lumbar support for the driver), driver memory presets and power rear seat releases in the trunk. Moving up to the Executive adds 20-inch wheels, a heated steering wheel, heated rear seats, keyless ignition/entry and a Dynaudio premium sound system.

The Hybrid comes loaded with all the aforementioned along with a power-adjustable steering column, rear parking sensors, passenger-seat memory presets, passenger power lumbar seat support and metal door-sill plates.

Options are few and include a Towing package, carpeted floor mats and the Protection package (which consists of rubber floor mats, a rubber cargo area mat and mud guards).

Powertrains and Performance

An eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive are standard on every 2012 Volkswagen Touareg. The VR6 versions have a 3.6-liter gasoline V6 that makes 280 horsepower and 265 pound-feet of torque. The TDI versions feature a 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 good for 225 hp and a prodigious 406 lb-ft of torque. The Hybrid features a supercharged, direct-injection 3.0-liter V6 gasoline engine paired with an electric motor. The two combine to generate an impressive 380 hp and 428 lb-ft of torque, enough to catapult this Touareg from a standstill to 60 mph in just 5.8 seconds, according to Edmunds testing.

EPA fuel economy estimates for the VR6 stand at 16 mpg city/23 mpg highway and 19 mpg combined, while the TDI is rated at an impressive 19/28/22 mpg. The Hybrid, which is tuned more for performance than maximum economy, rates only slightly lower than the TDI at 20/24/21.

Properly equipped, the Touareg (any trim level) can tow 7,700 pounds, which is more than most competitors.

Safety

All 2012 Volkswagen Touaregs come standard with antilock disc brakes, stability and traction control, hill-hold assist, front-seat side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags.

In recent Edmunds brake testing, the Touareg Hybrid came to a stop from 60 mph in an admirable 121 feet. In crash tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the Touareg earned a top score of "Good" in frontal-offset, side-impact and roof strength tests.

Interior Design and Special Features

While Volkswagen is rarely considered a player in the luxury market, the 2012 Touareg's interior transcends its badge to compare favorably to pricier SUVs. Most surfaces in the Touareg's interior are soft-touch, and the hard surfaces feel smooth and substantial. The navigation system boasts crisp graphics and an intuitive touchscreen interface. At higher trim levels the Touareg further impresses with the powerful Dynaudio stereo, upgraded styling cues and interior materials.

While some other midsize SUVs offer a third-row seat, the Touareg does not, limiting passenger capacity to only five. However, the second row is roomy enough, with a higher seat cushion than you'll find in the BMW X5. Cargo capacity is 32 cubic feet with the rear seats up and 71 cubic feet with them stowed.

Driving Impressions

Despite lacking a low-range transmission for off-road excursions, the 2012 Volkswagen Touareg provides a fair amount of trail prowess thanks to its minimal front/rear overhangs, decent ground clearance and compliant suspension. But even if you never venture off the beaten path, it is still quite satisfying to drive. Steering response is particularly sharp, though the effort level is perhaps too light for some tastes.

The VR6 engine is refined and adequately powerful, but the V6 TDI diesel is well worth the extra cash, providing superior torque and fuel economy. The Hybrid is impressively quick while returning good fuel economy, though its $60K price tag will likely scare some off. Regardless of engine choice, the eight-speed automatic transmission's shifts are barely noticeable. At highway speeds, the Touareg feels planted and confident, while cosseting its passengers in a cocoon of quiet luxury.

The Touareg's handling and ride dynamics are similarly refined, with a solid, composed feel in the corners and over the bumps. Though the brake pedal feels somewhat mushy with its long stroke, under hard braking, the brakes themselves are powerful enough.

Talk About The 2012 Touareg