Used 2006 Volkswagen Touareg Diesel

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2006 Volkswagen Touareg
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2006 Volkswagen Touareg

Pros

  • Upscale interior, polished road manners, true off-road capability, solid construction, lengthy standard equipment list.

Cons

  • Lousy fuel economy, smaller backseat than competitors, no in-dash CD changer.

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Edmunds' Expert Review

The 2006 Volkswagen Touareg is an enticing blend of the pavement-dwelling crossover and the rugged off-roader swathed in VW style.

vehicle overview

It's pronounced "Tour-regg" -- emphasis on the first syllable. The word translates literally to "free folk," and refers to a nomadic tribe whose travels regularly take them across the Sahara Desert. Such harsh terrain demands a strong physical and emotional constitution, and knowing that, it shouldn't surprise you that an automotive manufacturer has adopted the name of this people for a sport-utility vehicle.

While obviously unable to replicate the sentient human qualities of the real Touareg, the SUV namesake does indeed possess a strong physiology. Not strong in the old-fashioned, live-axles-at-either-end, give-me-your-worst sense, but strong as in carefully engineered using today's technology to take on such conditions as rush-hour traffic in the city, steep off-road trails in the mountains and everything in between in an unflappable manner. VW chose to straddle the divide between crossover SUVs and traditional SUVs. The Volkswagen Touareg has a unibody structure, four-wheel independent suspension and agile handling on pavement, like most crossovers. But leave the paved world and it can be shifted into its low-range gearing (4WD Low) and evade the assaults of rocks with up to 11.8 inches of ground clearance when equipped with an optional air suspension. It can also ford water up to 22.8 inches deep.

With a full menu of safety features (stability control and head curtain airbags included), the five-passenger Touareg is one of the safest SUVs on the road. While its smallish backseat and cargo bay may not make it the best choice for families, we expect that plenty of people will be delighted by the style and versatility of VW's SUV.

Trim levels & features

The four-door, midsize 2006 VW Touareg SUV comes in two models -- V6 and V8.. The V6 comes with 17-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated leatherette seats, a telescoping steering wheel, genuine wood and aluminum accents, a 10-speaker sound system with CD player, one-touch front windows and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. The V8 adds 18-inch wheels, upgraded side mirrors, leather seating and power-adjustable front seats. Popular options on the Touareg (depending on the trim level) include HID headlights, 19-inch wheels, an adjustable air suspension, parking sensors, a locking rear differential, four-zone climate control, premium leather upholstery and a navigation system.

2006 Highlights

For 2006, Volkswagen had planned on introducing a new 3.6-liter V6 engine and bringing back the diesel-fueled V10. However, the V6 has been shelved until next year's model, and the V10 will debut very late in 2006. Therefore, the only significant change to the Volkswagen Touareg is the addition of a new rearview camera feature and auxiliary multimedia connector to the optional navigation package.

Performance & mpg

Two engines are available on the VW Touareg. The V6 displaces 3.2 liters and makes 240 horsepower and 229 pound-feet of torque. The 4.2-liter V8 puts out 310 hp and 302 lb-ft of torque. A four-wheel-drive system is standard on all Touaregs, and includes low-range gearing for serious off-roading. Optional is an air suspension that increases the Touareg's ground clearance from 8.3 inches to 11.9; a rear locking differential is also available. Regardless of the engine, the Touareg, properly equipped, is rated to tow 7,700 pounds.

Safety

Every model comes with four-wheel antilock disc brakes with BrakeAssist and Electronic Brakeforce Distribution, stability control, hill descent and incline rollback control. Passive safety features include side airbags for front occupants, full-length head curtain airbags and seatbelt pre-tensioners in all outboard positions. Crash-testing by the NHTSA returned a four-star rating (out of five) for frontal impacts (both driver and passenger) and five stars for side impacts (front and rear).

Driving

Even if you never leave the pavement, the Volkswagen Touareg should satisfy. The V6 is mediocre in terms of acceleration; those used to the low-end grunt of more traditional SUVs will likely want the V8 model. The Touareg's ride quality is smooth and stable, and although heavy, the VW feels agile around corners, particularly when equipped with the air suspension. Taken off-road, the Touareg amazes as it tackles steep passes and deep ruts normally reserved for rough-and-tumble Jeeps.

Interior

Inside, each Touareg has an upscale two-tone ensemble accented by real wood and aluminum. Most surfaces are soft-touch, and what hard surfaces there are (lower dash, console and doors) feel smooth and substantial to the touch. The backseat isn't overly roomy, and we encourage families to try before they buy. Cargo capacity is average -- 31 cubic feet with the rear seats up and 71 cubes when they're folded.


Top consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2006 Volkswagen Touareg.

Replaced Cayenne S with V10 TDI
Lee,07/06/2010
When our 2004 Cayenne S had nearly 100k miles, I bought a 2007 Dodge with 5.7 Hemi to tow with. After one off-ramp at the speed I considered normal in the Cayenne, the Dodge had completely spooked and disappointed me. I found a 2006 VW with 5.0 TDI and bought it with 29k miles. Very satisfied with it, especially mileage (15+ city, 23+ Hwy, 19.0 overall, and 14.3 towing a 5800 lb race car trailer!) Also, it had air suspension that hadn't been available in the Cayenne S when we bought it. Very good. Finally, backup camera is wonderful! Can hook up trailer on first try. Only negatives. The Nav system is pitiful, and no tire pressure monitor in this one. Audio good, not great.
The Amazing V10 Diesel
SLA,08/29/2009
I had a 2004 Touareg V8 before this one and it had a lot of electrical problems. Replaced it with the V10 and couldn't be happier, one of the best vehicles I have owned. It has amazing performance, gets very good fuel economy considering its weight and size and will tow over 7700 lbs. Haven't had any problems with it, just normal maintenance, which isn't cheap but I have a prepaid maint. plan. It does eat up tires but haven't had to replace the brakes (30k miles).
TDI...Great Towing, Comfort & Power!
TJ,03/28/2007
This is my second Touareg. The first was a fully loaded 2004 V8 which I really loved. It replaced my Range Rover Classic. Did everything the Rover did, for $20K less and towed better too. With 100K miles on the V8, I figured I would take advantage of the current discounts on the 06 TDI. The vehicle is identical except for DVD navigation on the new one and of course the V10 twin turbo diesel. The V8 was very fast, but this thing flies. Better yet is the fuel economy.
Tons of fun
AADAM,06/26/2008
I love driving my Tdi Touareg daily. It is a blast; tons of torque and hp which makes it a lot of fun. We put the car on a rolling chassis dyno to see what it would do and how much power and torque it would lose through the drivetrain; from the engine to the tires. We were pleasantly suprised. It is rated at 310 hp and 554 lb-ft at the motor so I thought it should put down somewhere around 250-260 hp and 460- 485 lb-ft of torque at the tires. The dyno results surprised us all to say the least; 299 hp and 548 lb-ft torque at the tires; damn near matched the power ratings which were listed as at the flywheel. It is very difficult not to drive it with your foot to the pedal. Brakes are super as well. Super!!
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Features & Specs

MPG
15 city / 20 hwy
Seats 5
6-speed shiftable automatic
Diesel
310 hp @ 3750 rpm
See all Used 2006 Volkswagen Touareg Diesel features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated

More about the 2006 Volkswagen Touareg
Used 2006 Volkswagen Touareg Diesel Overview

The Used 2006 Volkswagen Touareg Diesel is offered in the following styles: V10 TDI 4dr SUV AWD (4.9L 10cyl Turbodiesel 6A).

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Should I lease or buy a 2006 Volkswagen Touareg?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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