2017 Touareg New Car Test Drive
The 2017 Volkswagen Touareg is an attractive five-seat all-wheel-drive crossover SUV. With underpinnings shared by the Porsche Cayenne and Audi Q7, the Touareg is the most costly, luxurious, and largest Volkswagen sold in America.
Touareg is comparable to the Mercedes-Benz GLE, BMW X5, Audi Q7, Land Rover Discovery and Range Rover Sport, Cadillac, Lexus, Infiniti, and maybe the Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit. As with the Volvo XC90, the Touareg might be more accurately viewed as premium rather than luxury, falling between mainstream and upscale. It's conservative, cautious, and thoughtfully engineered.
We found Touareg offers precise handling, agility, and a composed ride.
The 2017 Touareg is in the sixth year of its second generation, making it a dated product, although it was updated for 2015. The 2017 Volkswagen Touareg offers little in the way of newness, though more collision avoidance systems are available and there is a change of model names.
The 2017 Touareg offers just one engine, a V6. The hybrid and diesel models have been discontinued. The hybrid was a slow seller, the diesel banned for cheating on emissions tests.
The 3.6-liter VR6 engine makes 280 horsepower with strong torque, mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission. It has less power than most rivals, but it's more capable on rough roads, and can tow a hefty 7700 pounds.
EPA estimates are 17/23/19 miles per gallon City/Highway/Combined, so it's not much of a contender in its class for fuel economy, but at least it runs on Regular gasoline. Some of its competitors demand Premium.
It hasn't been crash-tested by the NHTSA, but the IIHS gives it the top Good rating in the moderate overlap front, side impact, roof strength, and head restraint tests. The IIHS also gave the Touareg's collision avoidance technology an Advanced rating. Touareg's 3-year, 36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty is less than its luxury rivals.
The 2017 Volkswagen Touareg Sport ($49,495) includes the leatherette upholstery with heated front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, a touchscreen infotainment system, power-adjustable front seats, rearview camera, 18-inch alloy wheels, bi-xenon adaptive front lighting, LED taillights. The Technology Package comes standard on the Sport and includes navigation, power tailgate, and safety equipment including adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, lane-keeping assistance, and a blind spot monitor. (Prices are MSRP and do not include $910 destination charge.)
The 2017 Touareg Wolfsburg Edition ($52,795) adds brushed aluminum interior inlays, stainless steel door sills and pedals, a black headliner, two-tone ventilated leather seats, gray door inserts, contrast stitching, and 20-inch wheels in silver or black.
Touareg Executive ($60,195) includes 21-inch wheels, power adjustable steering column, heated steering wheel, heated rear seats, and 10-speaker Dynaudio sound system.