2010 Volkswagen Touareg Review

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Pros & Cons

  • Confident driving dynamics, high-class interior, genuine off-road capability, impressive equipment roster, powerful and fuel-efficient turbodiesel V6, high towing capacity.
  • Subpar fuel economy with regular V6, no third-row seat, middling cargo capacity, stiff ride with standard suspension, can get pricey with options.
List Price Range
$10,399 - $10,743

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Edmunds' Expert Review

The 2010 Volkswagen Touareg combines extraordinary on-road civility and luxury with real off-road prowess, and it offers an excellent turbodiesel V6. If you don't need three rows of seats or class-leading cargo capacity, the Touareg deserves a look.

Vehicle overview

The 2010 Volkswagen Touareg has at least one thing in common with the Saharan nomadic people from whom it gets its name: It's good at going off-road, thanks to excellent ground clearance and a permanent all-wheel-drive system with low-range gearing. But while this certainly sets the Touareg apart from its "soft-roader" rivals, it's not especially relevant for most shoppers in this segment. Folks with $40,000-$50,000 to spend on a premium midsize SUV are more interested in refined on-road performance, quality construction and an ample helping of luxury. Fortunately, the Touareg is anything but rustic in these respects; on the contrary, it's one of the most appealing vehicles in its segment, even as it enters its seventh year of production on the same basic platform.

The Touareg shares that platform with the Audi Q7 and Porsche Cayenne. Not surprisingly, we've noted in past reviews that the Touareg veers uncomfortably close to Audi levels of capability and sophistication while undercutting its price by a wide margin. Apparently, parent company Volkswagen thought so, too, because for 2010 the Touareg has become notably less Audi-like. The 350-horsepower V8 has been dropped, as has adaptive cruise control, both of which are now available only on the Q7. In a nod to the Touareg's predominantly on-road use, the optional locking rear differential has been ditched as well.

Nonetheless, the Touareg remains one of the best at its craft. The base gasoline V6 is hampered by the vehicle's considerable curb weight, but it's still smooth and capable. Fuel economy is rather poor, though, which is where the diesel-powered V6 TDI model comes in. Giving up nothing to the gas V6 in terms of performance, the torquey TDI also gets more than 25 percent better fuel economy on the highway. With either engine, the Touareg impresses with its relaxed cruising demeanor, high towing capacity and surprisingly capable handling, though the latter comes at the expense of ride quality (the optional air suspension smoothes things out). Interior appointments are a cut above as well, rivaling costlier German competitors in materials quality and craftsmanship.

The Touareg's competitive set is difficult to pin down. It's a bit pricier than compact luxury crossovers like the Audi Q5 and Volvo XC60 T6, but the extra coin nets a larger interior, optional diesel power and that genuine off-road ability. It's cheaper than similarly engined versions of the Audi Q7, BMW X5 and Mercedes-Benz ML-Class, but it lacks their brand cachet and -- compared to the Audi and BMW -- available third-row seats. Two others to consider are the Lexus RX 350 and its hybrid sibling, the RX 450h, which boast competitive pricing, quicker acceleration and a plusher ride. The Acura MDX is also a very viable alternative. But this VW is still a desirable premium midsize SUV -- and not just because its off-road chops play well in the Sahara.

2010 Volkswagen Touareg models

The 2010 Volkswagen Touareg is a midsize five-passenger SUV available in two trim levels that correspond to engine options: VR6 FSI and V6 TDI. The VR6 FSI comes standard with 17-inch alloy wheels, foglights, automatic headlamps and wipers, a power tailgate, a sunroof, rear parking assist, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, 12-way power driver and eight-way manual passenger heated front seats, leatherette upholstery, walnut wood accents, dual-zone automatic climate control, Bluetooth and a 10-speaker CD stereo with satellite radio and an auxiliary audio jack. The V6 TDI shares this equipment roster and adds a turbodiesel V6 under the hood.

Options are largely grouped into packages. The Luxury package features 19-inch alloys, special front seats, leather upholstery, a 12-way power passenger seat, different wood interior trim, a sliding armrest and a heated steering wheel. The Lux Limited package starts with the Luxury package's goodies and adds 20-inch alloys, chrome tailpipes and grille, exclusive front and rear bumpers and side sills and upgraded interior trim. The Technology package offers bi-xenon headlamps, a hard-drive-based navigation system, a back-up camera, an iPod input, an upgraded 11-speaker sound system and keyless entry and ignition. The Premium Technology package starts with the Technology package and adds the top-of-the-line Dynaudio sound system. Other options include a trailer hitch, a rear-seat DVD entertainment system and an electronically adjustable air suspension. Note that the air suspension requires either the Luxury or Lux Limited package.

2010 Highlights

Known for a spell as Touareg 2, Volkswagen's premium midsize SUV loses the "2" suffix for 2010. It also loses its optional V8 engine. Additional deleted options include adaptive cruise control, lane-change assist and the locking rear differential. On the plus side, the Touareg now features standard wood interior trim and Bluetooth.

Performance & mpg

A six-speed automatic transmission, all-wheel drive and a low-range gear for serious off-roading are standard on every 2010 Volkswagen Touareg. The VR6 FSI model gets a narrow-angle 3.6-liter gasoline V6 that makes 280 hp and 266 pound-feet of torque, while the V6 TDI features a 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 good for 221 hp and a whopping 407 lb-ft of torque at just 2,250 rpm.

EPA fuel economy estimates for the VR6 stand at 14 mpg city/19 mpg highway and 16 mpg combined, which is below average for a V6-powered crossover. The TDI is rated at a considerably more palatable 18 mpg city/25 mpg highway and 20 mpg combined. Properly equipped, the Touareg can tow 7,700 pounds, more than most competitors.

Safety

Both 2010 Volkswagen Touareg trim levels come with antilock disc brakes with brake assist, stability control, hill descent control and incline roll-back control. Passive safety features include front-seat side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags. In crash tests, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the Touareg a perfect five-star rating for frontal and side impacts.

Driving

The 2010 Volkswagen Touareg can get down in the dirt like few other premium SUVs, but even if you never venture off the beaten path, this is one satisfying SUV from behind the wheel. Steering response is particularly sharp, and overall handling is above average. The VR6 engine is refined and adequately powerful, but the V6 TDI is well worth the extra cash, providing superior torque and fuel economy. With either engine, the six-speed automatic transmission's shifts are barely noticeable. At speed, the Touareg feels unflappable, devouring highway miles while cosseting its passengers in a cocoon of quiet luxury. The ride may be objectionably firm to some in standard guise, but the optional air suspension is an easy (albeit pricey) fix.

Interior

The only real difference between the Touareg's cabin and, say, the BMW X5's is the big VW badge on the steering wheel. You just have to wrap your head around the fact that the "people's car" company now makes full-blown luxury vehicles. Most surfaces in the Touareg's interior are soft-touch, and the hard surfaces (lower dash, console, doors) feel smooth and substantial. The optional hard-drive-based navigation system boasts crisp graphics and an intuitive touchscreen interface. Other options allow the Touareg to be decked out like a Range Rover, including the air suspension, the Dynaudio stereo and the Lux Limited package's upgraded styling cues and interior materials.

While many other midsize or large SUVs offer a third-row seat, the Touareg makes do without one, limiting passenger capacity to only five. However, the second row is roomy enough, with a higher cushion than you'll find in the X5. Cargo capacity is 31 cubic feet with the rear seats up and 71 cubic feet when they're folded -- useful, to be sure, but not particularly impressive given that a humble Honda CR-V has more maximum storage space.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2010 Volkswagen Touareg.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

My working beast
Chris,08/04/2015
V6 TDI 4dr SUV 4WD (3.0L 6cyl Turbodiesel 6A)
*Update* After 200,000+ miles towing three different campers, hunting trips, business trips and daily driving, I finally retired the TReg. It hurt doing it. After owning over two dozen cars in my lifetime, the TReg was my favorite. I did eventually did a DEF/EGR delete, and the truck became a beast. I loved that machine. But, it couldn't pull a 5th wheel. Bottom line, I have over 145,000 miles on my Touareg and it is still going strong. Before purchasing my T-Reg, I laid out my needs for a car. I wanted diesel, as are all my cars (Jetta SW and Q7). I needed something that fit my family comfortably if we didn’t take my wife’s Q7. It needed to tow the camper (5,000 lbs) and all other smaller implements. It needed to have 4 wheel drive. It needed a good sound system (for all my hours in the left seat). It needed to look like a man’s vehicle (men, you know what I mean). This left me mostly with ¾ ton or larger trucks. However, after living in Germany for a long time, I already had an affinity for the VW, except the last time I saw one for sale, the price started at about my yearly income. Over time, my income has increased, and if I looked at all the other vehicles that fit my requirements, the prices were the same. I test drove every vehicle that fit my requirements, to include my wife’s Q7…which she said I could have when she is dead and gone. The end result is that I could purchase an 8,800 pound ¾ ton truck with highway mileage in the teens, or the 5,500 pound T-Reg with 25 MPG on the highway with the same interior options. So the T-Reg is the way I went. And I am very happy with my lease return purchase 140,000 miles later. A few things to consider though. I was already VW savvy through the ownership of the Audi and Jetta. Therefore many of the new owner pains had already been felt as I read through the owner’s manual, as one should. They are very particular about fluids and servicing, but if followed to the letter, major maintenance is absolutely unheard of. Between the three vehicles, I spend less than $250 a month on maintenance (this includes oil, brakes, wipers, AdBlue, washing and all other things except tires) on vehicles that spend a ton of time on the road. Yes, I have three vehicles (2009, 2010, 2011) with over 100,00 miles on them and have no doubt that any of them can drive across the country without issue. As of writing this, I have just returned from a 5,000 mile cross country trip towing our camper. As a towing rig, I have been completely impressed. There is zero trailer sag (that condition where it seems the butt of the truck is dragging on the ground) and tows like there is nothing behind it. Yes, a family of four, all their stuff packed in, on (via the Thule on the top) and behind it in the camper we still managed to have a trip fuel mileage average of 16.6 MPG (hand calculated) on a trip that did hit speeds up to 90 MPH (in states where that is perfectly legalish). Although, I did have to purchase mirror extensions so I could see around the camper, the T-Reg is otherwise perfectly prepared to tow. When driving sans trailer, I set the cruise and drive effortless for hours. Driving across country is a joy, as is driving through the city. Step on the go pedal and hang on! I also use this vehicle to hunt. While I received some raised eyebrows the first time I took this off road to get to our site, I made it easily after pulling the most vocal “anti SUV” guy out of a mud pit I had just traversed. It allowed me a moment of smug suburban former Jeep guy glee to do it. The interior appointments I have found to be timeless and un-cumbersome. Nothing is fading, cracking, wearing, or getting “old” looking. People still ask me if it is new, and are shocked when I tell them it is nearly 5 years old with 145,000 miles on it. Things just hold up well. No rattle, shake or squeak. The interface with the stereo and GPS is so much easier than my wife’s Q7 (don’t tell her I said that), and is just intuitive. There are cons to this truck. Driving for eight hours straight before needing fuel tests the limits of a bladder. Crying the first time the paint was scratched. That annoying alarm that goes off once and a while when I lock the doors. Paying over $300 for a GPS update on my $60,000+ vehicle (VAG really needs to fix this, I was very angry when it came up and the disc was different across all three of my cars). The onboard hard drive only plays MP3, so I had to reformat all my WMA music. The SD reader only reads a 2 GIG card, taking me nearly three days to load my music to the hard drive…only to discover half my music couldn’t be played because it was in the wrong format. There are times that the computer is a bit slow, meaning that the touch screen won’t activate stuff as quickly as I wished. However, the same can be true of me, so I deal with it.
30+ MPG at 70 MPH
Dean,11/04/2010
Bought the Touareg for work related driving. Smooth, powerfull, and fun to drive. Handles very well for an SUV. Routinely getting 29-31 mpg with the diesel. Tows our sailboat effortlessly. No problems the first 20k miles
DO consider the TDI Touareg!
aokvw,07/23/2011
Overabundant torque completely satisfies all overtaking needs. Having owned a 2004 V8 Touareg previously (18 mpg tops), I hardly miss its full throttle induction roar, instead embracing the low-revving oomph of the turbo-diesel, while averaging 27+ mpg.
Certified T-Reg
Kimball Dempsey,08/29/2015
V6 TDI 4dr SUV 4WD (3.0L 6cyl Turbodiesel 6A)
I've scouted these diesel SUV's for several years and really like the older body style over the new style started in '11. But, I found the TDI's to be expensive so I've been patient. I found a Black T-Reg diesel advertised as a Certified Preowned with 63k miles at a local VW Dealer. The vehicle was in excellent physical condition and all of its meticulous service records were available at the dealer where the only previous owner always had it serviced. I didn't even dicker on price. Unfortunately, less than 24 hours after purchase the check engine light and warning graphics came on. It ended up being an oil sensor that was replaced under warranty. A week or so later, I noticed the Nav system would blink off inexplicably but would always reboot and come back on. I needed to take the vehicle back to the dealer to have the right rear window fixed (dropped down and wouldn't go back up). The service manager told me VW had a service bulletin on the Nav and it required reprogramming to work out the bug. They did this and fixed the window under the CPO warranty. That was about a month ago and after a rather auspicious start with this T-Reg, it seems to be operating well. The only other issue I've had, and it was a one-time thing, is the rear hatch wouldn't open one day either with the power assist or manually. But after driving it a few miles and trying it again it worked fine. Weird, but I hope its not a precursor to another failure and trip to the dealer. The things I like most: I'm 6'4" and the seating position is excellent and I like the front bucket seat comfort much better than in my wife's newer Lexus RX. The ride around town is harsh but on the highway its a dream. This vehicle has great acceleration and doesn't suffer major turbo lag like other turbo diesels I've owned. The gas mileage is reasonable (21-22 around town and about 26 on the highway so far). The sound system is very good and I've found the Nav system easy to use and decently intuitive for a 6 year old technology. The things I like least: Slight rattle in dash somewhere at lower speed, but with the radio at normal volume its hardly noticable. Rear cargo room is very limited and the rear seats don't completely fold flat. Harshness of ride on bumpy roads around town. Lacks rear LED tail lights and for a vehicle in its price range when new this should've have been a standard as should have been front seat presets. Overall: I really like the vehicle and although it is 6 years old by model year and I understand it will have service issues from time to time, I'm hoping the initial quirky gremlins are behind me. I well understand the love for and cult following T-Reg's have gained over the years.

Features & Specs

See all Used 2010 Volkswagen Touareg features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 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
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated

More about the 2010 Volkswagen Touareg

Used 2010 Volkswagen Touareg Overview

The Used 2010 Volkswagen Touareg is offered in the following submodels: Touareg SUV, Touareg Diesel. Available styles include VR6 FSI 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6A), and V6 TDI 4dr SUV 4WD (3.0L 6cyl Turbodiesel 6A).

What's a good price on a Used 2010 Volkswagen Touareg?

Price comparisons for Used 2010 Volkswagen Touareg trim styles:

  • The Used 2010 Volkswagen Touareg V6 TDI is priced between $10,743 and$10,743 with odometer readings between 113060 and113060 miles.
  • The Used 2010 Volkswagen Touareg VR6 FSI is priced between $10,399 and$10,399 with odometer readings between 81378 and81378 miles.

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Which used 2010 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) 2010 Volkswagen Touareg for sale near. There are currently 2 used and CPO 2010 Touaregs listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $10,399 and mileage as low as 81378 miles. 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 2010 Volkswagen Touareg.

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Find a used Volkswagen Touareg for sale - 4 great deals out of 8 listings starting at $14,907.

Find a used Volkswagen for sale - 9 great deals out of 13 listings starting at $8,641.

Find a used certified pre-owned Volkswagen Touareg for sale - 11 great deals out of 24 listings starting at $12,761.

Find a used certified pre-owned Volkswagen for sale - 2 great deals out of 12 listings starting at $8,087.

Should I lease or buy a 2010 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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