2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI
2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI. Click image to enlarge

Related articles on Autos
First Drive: 2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI
Test Drive: 2008 Volkswagen Touareg 2
Test Drive: 2008 Volkswagen Touareg 2 V6

Manufacturer’s web site
Volkswagen Canada

Join Autos’s Facebook group
Follow Autos on Twitter

Review and photos by Bob McHugh

Find this vehicle in Autos’s Classified Ads

Photo Gallery:
2009 Volkswagen Touareg

Surrey, British Columbia – The Volkswagen Touareg TDI may be related (by birth) to the Porsche Cayenne, but its 3.0-litre V6 TDI clean-diesel engine is available only in the Touareg. The new TDI engine is mated to a six-speed Tiptronic automatic transmission and a full-time four-wheel-drive system with a low-range gear and adaptive torque distribution.

Starting at $48,975, the Touareg TDI is one of only four mid-size diesel-powered SUVs available in Canada.

While the V6 TDI offers a rather unspectacular 225 horsepower, the important stat is a whopping 406 lb.-ft. of torque, produced as low as 1,750 r.p.m. (compared to 265 lb.-ft. at 2,500 r.p.m. for the standard 3.6-litre V6). The outstanding pulling power of the diesel engine gives the Touareg TDI serious towing capability: it’s rated at 3,500 kilograms, (over 7,700 pounds). Fuel consumption is a thrifty 8.0 L/100 km on the highway allowing a Touareg TDI to travel up to 1,200 km on a single tank of fuel.

2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI
2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI. Click image to enlarge

A new service feature of the V6 engine Clean Diesel system is a subsystem, first used by Mercedes, called AdBlue. This is a urea-injection system that works with an exhaust-storage catalyst to chemically bind harmful nitrous oxides, and a second unit that transforms them into harmless nitrogen and water in the exhaust. The Touareg TDI meets the most stringent North American clean-air standards and is sold in all 50 U.S. states, as well as Canada. The AdBlue fluid is stored in a tank that’s hidden under the spare wheel and is topped up during servicing. No info from VW on how far Touareg can drive on a full tank of AdBlue, but a service warning will pop up on the instrument panel, well in advance, and an emergency refill bottle comes with the vehicle.

A touch-screen satellite navigation system is a new option and it comes in a technology package ($3,450) that includes a rearview camera, a 600-watt audio upgrade and a multi-function monitor. My test vehicle, a Touareg TDI Highline ($57,975), also came with a Sport Package ($2,400) that included 19-inch wheels, a tow hitch and Bluetooth. With a $1,575 Freight charge, the as-tested price came to $65,500.

2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI
2009 Volkswagen Touareg TDI. Click image to enlarge

The Volkswagen family resemblance is clear from the front view, even though the Touareg is a tall and muscular member of the VW family. Unfortunately, the position of the front-mounted licence plate is decidedly unattractive.

The Touareg’s long 284-centimetre wheelbase provides a roomy cabin, yet its overall length is under 4.9 metres. This puts the Touareg’s wheels close to the corners, and trims body overhang. Its obstacle-approach and departure (front/rear) angles (28 degrees) are the same, a handy off-road attribute.

The Touareg’s rear glass window opens separately via a hidden power latch under the wiper arm. It’s a good feature for loading or unloading a packed cargo area and it has a clever self-closing feature, if the liftgate is lifted while the window is open.

Pages: 1 2 All

Connect with Autos.ca