When you first walk into a prospective new home, holiday hotel or take your table in a restaurant it’s the look, smell and feel that sells, writes Paul Agnew. Photography: Paul Currie
You know when things just feel right. Maybe difficult to put your finger on how you know. You just do.
Climbing into the ‘Innovision Cockpit’ of the new Touareg is exactly the same. An immediate sense that you’re in for a memorable experience.
This is some car and, given the level of competition, Porsche Cayenne, BMW X5, Audi Q7 et al, it sure needs to be. We’re talking motoring hierarchy here – big hitters with big personalities, well used to headlines and accolades.
So, can this premier Volkswagen, with all the power and strength of an SUV and true off-road capability, hold its own?
Let’s leave what’s under the bonnet for a moment and look at the astonishing technology, the level of which has not been seen before in a SUV. Imagine a screen as big as your laptop, with an interface you can customise. It may sound futuristic, but here it is. The 15-inch screen, controlled by touch, gesture or voice, merges into the digital dashboard, an instrument cluster, angled to give an ergonomically optimised view of everything. You can customise with favourite apps and photos, use Car-Net App Connect to see your compatible smartphone apps. Oh, and permanent eSIM card guarantees access to the internet.
And what’s this, hiding in the dark? It may seem like the stuff of spy films, but ‘night vision’ uses infrared beams to scan the road, detecting thermal radiation and projecting an image onto your screen. This is technology working to keep you safe when driving at night. The IQ light couples LED matrix technology with a camera that detects what’s happening on the road and adapts accordingly.
There’s Emergency Assist – connecting to the Volkswagen Emergency Call Centre and emergency services whenever the airbags are triggered. You can also call them yourself any time at the touch of a button.
White ambient light keeps the interior chilled it also offers 30 colour choices to suit your mood – as if a mix of ash and walnut wood and Vienna and Savona leather isn’t decadence enough!
And so to the drive itself. There is genuine torque (0-60 in 6.1 secs), making every situation easy to negotiate. From the moment you touch the keyless ignition button to the time you park up and the handbrake activates itself, the journey is a joy.
The new Touareg affords the smoothest of rides whether on the flat or the challenges of a tough terrain.
Expect a cost-efficient 42 mpg (combined cycle consumption) and generous boot space for flexibility. Air suspension is at a different level too. You can find the highest or lowest level of driving by selecting the height of the car itself.
There is so much more to this car, but not sufficient space here to do it justice!
Suffice to say the new Volkswagen Touareg is mightily impressive. A superb 4×4 luxury car with innovative technology perfectly suited to modern life and looks that are guaranteed to turn heads. What’s not to like?
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