2006 Volkswagen Touareg Review

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Volkswagen Touareg model years
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Edmunds' Expert Review

  • Upscale interior, polished road manners, true off-road capability, solid construction, lengthy standard equipment list.
  • Lousy fuel economy, smaller backseat than competitors, no in-dash CD changer.

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.

2006 Volkswagen Touareg models

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.

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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.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2006 Volkswagen Touareg.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

2.88 out of 5 stars
Beware of Problems
Jac Lavone,11/03/2005
V6 4dr SUV AWD (3.2L 6cyl 6A)
I have had two Volkswagen Touaregs and had nothing but headaches. VW doesn't want to deal with many of the ongoing issues and they eventually refunded my payments and took back the vehicles. The truck is beautiful until you have your FIRST problem. Then, run!
2.13 out of 5 stars
VW - No Longer the People's Car
VeroDD,01/15/2007
V6 4dr SUV AWD (3.2L 6cyl 6A)
In my opinion, it's a good looking vehicle but not well thought out. To replace the battery, you must remove the driver's seat and controls. The spare tire is not inflated. It has a 12v air pump to assist you, only if you do not have a dead battery. The rear seats must have the head rests removed in order to be lowered. The rain sensing wipers have a mind of their own and run randomly. The exterior paint is VERY soft. Just the slightest brush against it and it scratches. The tires are worn out at 20,000 miles. The dealer says I'm lucky. Most fail earlier. Parts fall off! A cover for the rear wiper and one of the VW emblems just fell off. This was not covered under warranty.
4.63 out of 5 stars
The Amazing V10 Diesel
SLA,08/29/2009
V10 TDI 4dr SUV AWD (4.9L 10cyl Turbodiesel 6A)
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).
4.88 out of 5 stars
Touareg V8
Vermonter,04/23/2007
V8 4dr SUV AWD (4.2L 8cyl 6A)
At first I was hesitant to buy this car because of poor ratings for the 04 model. I'm glad I did. It gets better gas mileage (18 mpg) than the 02 Explorer, had every possible option, sounds outstanding when hitting the gas, and the stereo with navigation is close to what I have in my house. This car drives like the Porsche for about 15K less cash. Excellent capability this winter in the snow, excellent handling.

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 Overview

The Used 2006 Volkswagen Touareg is offered in the following submodels: Touareg SUV, Touareg Diesel. Available styles include V6 4dr SUV AWD (3.2L 6cyl 6A), V8 4dr SUV AWD (4.2L 8cyl 6A), and V10 TDI 4dr SUV AWD (4.9L 10cyl Turbodiesel 6A). Pre-owned Volkswagen Touareg models are available with a 3.2 L-liter gas engine or a 4.2 L-liter gas engine or a 4.9 L-liter diesel engine, with output up to 310 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2006 Volkswagen Touareg comes with all wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 6-speed shiftable automatic. The Used 2006 Volkswagen Touareg comes with a 4 yr./ 50000 mi. basic warranty, a 4 yr./ unlimited mi. roadside warranty, and a 5 yr./ 60000 mi. powertrain warranty.

What's a good price on a Used 2006 Volkswagen Touareg?

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 2006 Volkswagen Touaregs are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2006 Volkswagen Touareg for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2006 Volkswagen Touareg.

Can't find a used 2006 Volkswagen Touaregs you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Volkswagen Touareg for sale - 9 great deals out of 12 listings starting at $23,912.

Find a used Volkswagen for sale - 8 great deals out of 9 listings starting at $12,108.

Find a used certified pre-owned Volkswagen Touareg for sale - 1 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $15,859.

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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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