2011 Volkswagen Touareg – Click above for high-res image gallery

All signs may be pointing to ever steeper gas prices by the end of the year, but according to Bloomberg, that may not be enough to stop Volkswagen from unleashing a new wave of SUVs (or more than likely, CUVs) on the American market. VW head honcho Jonathan Browning has been quoted as saying that the company wants to expand its portfolio of compact SUVs in short order, and that eventually, there may be room for growth in the larger SUV market as well. Of all the vehicles sold in the U.S. last year, SUVs and crossovers made up 29 percent of the mix.

As of right now, Volkswagen only offers two utility vehicles in the States – the compact Tiguan crossover, which, according to Bloomberg, sold 20,946 units last year and the larger Touareg SUV. Volkswagen only managed to move 4,713 Touareg models in the U.S. in 2010, but the new model (shown above) is expected to help the line's fortunes. The company's planned expansion of its SUV offerings is part of a larger offensive designed to net the company U.S. sales of one million vehicles by 2018. Doing so would mean tripling the company's current sales, so the automaker is invested in exploring new ways to bring buyers to the showroom.

Photos copyright ©2010 Jonathon Ramsey / AOL

[Source: Bloomberg]

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