Don’t get fooled by it’s simplistic looks.
You see, behind that dark, soft-touch leather interior & the 6.5inch touchscreen display lurks technology – a lot of it. The Touareg is currently the only SUV to feature something called Dynamic Light Assist – the vehicle has cameras that continually monitor incoming traffic, and adjust the car’s headlights so they don’t glare other drivers – it doesn’t just dim the lights, it re-shapes the actual beam. It’s also got Adaptive Cruise Control, which maintains the correct distance from the car in front of you – and actively brakes if the car ahead stops – the VW then sets off again, by itself when traffic clears up. The car also monitors the lane you’re in, and warns you of any object in your blind spot by rumbling the steering wheel. Parking is a breeze, with 4 cameras giving you a 360 Area View of the car’s surroundings. If the Touareg had any more cameras & radar systems, it would give up its day job and land airplanes for a living. The following video shows the dashboard and some of the features of the 2011 Touareg.
All that technology hasn’t made it a sofa cushion off the road either. Just turn the knob to “Off Road Driving Mode” and it’ll automatically adjust its ABS, transmission shift points & activate Hill Climb Assist. Combined with VW’s 4Motion all-wheel drive system, a limited-slip differential and the ability to climb 31 degree gradients – it’s a fairly capable off-roader. Back on the road, the Touareg is a quiet car at highway speeds, its Adaptive Air Suspension eats up potholes & bumps on the road – and has VW’s Continuous Damping Control – the result is an SUV that doesn’t feel like the titanic around the bends & maintains a good balance between ride quality & handling.
The Touareg is an enigma then, its not over-powered – but its not under-powered either. Its not flashy, but it does have curb-appeal. It’s a capable off-roader. It comes loaded with safety features & technology, but none of them interfere with your driving experience. It’s understated compared to its relatives – the Audi Q7 & the Porsche Cayenne – both of which are based off VW’s PL71 Platform. It also costs less than the competition, but delivers on features. So if you’re on the market for a sensible, unpretentious SUV, and willing to forgive its slight power impairment–the 2011 Touareg should definitely be on your list.