Volkswagen Amorak at Portuguese National Institute for Search and Rescue

Get stranded in the waters off a beach in Portugal, and this is what you'll hope to see pulling up on the shore: the Volkswagen Amarok.

In one of its first applications as an emergency vehicle, the Portugese National Institute for Search and Rescue has ordered a fleet of 14 of VW's new pickups for its lifeguards to rescue wayward surfers and swimmers.

The vehicles have been outfitted with emergency lights, surfboard racks and special livery derived from the design of the first Volkswagen SAR concept that previewed the Amarok at the commercial vehicle show in Hanover back in 2008.

You can check out the press release after the jump and the pair of high-resolution images in the gallery for a closer look, just don't expect any slow-motion running shots of Pamela Anderson or David Hasselhoff in their swimsuits.
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AMAROK TO THE RESCUE

A fleet of 14 new Volkswagen Amarok pick-ups have been rescuing surfers and swimmers in Portugal this summer in one of its first uses as an emergency services vehicle.

The Portuguese National Institute for Search and Rescue has chosen the robust all-wheel drive Volkswagen Amarok for its quick response team which carry essential life saving equipment. Each Amarok has been fitted with an emergency lighting bar, racking for surf boards and an exclusive exterior design inspired by the original Volkswagen SAR pick-up concept vehicle that previewed the Amarok at the IAA Hanover commercial vehicle show in 2008.

'This is a great example of the versatility our new pick-up offers fleet customers and the emergency services sector,' said Al Hemmings, National Sales Manager, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.

'We are delighted to add the new Amarok off-roader to our range of commercial vehicles this year which, with the Volkswagen 4MOTION system also available on our Caddy Maxi, Transporter and Caravelle ranges, means we now offer an extensive and versatile choice of all-wheel drive vehicles from vans and people carriers to a robust pick-up,' he continued.

The new Amarok was launched in the UK earlier this year and is available as a double cab pick-up with four doors and space for five adults. It has the largest loadspace in its class and the most efficient model in the pick-up sector with lower emissions and better fuel economy thanks to its 2.0-litre TDI engine which produces as much power and torque as rivals still using larger engines.

Retail prices for the Amarok range start from £17,995 (plus VAT).

For full details of the new Amarok pick-up, or to find a local Volkswagen Van Centre, please visit www.volkswagen-vans.co.uk/amarok.