Text by Kannan Chandran, Storm.
You get the benefit of both worlds with Volkswagen's Touareg facelift.
What a study in contrasts the Touareg facelift offers.
In normal driving modes, this is a tame pleasant-looking vehicle, its drive verging on the bland even.
But it harbours a delicious secret.
All it takes to switch from Jekyll to Hyde is to push it to Sport mode and a totally different drive emerges. Now it is engaging, full of verve and pep as it eagerly guns down the chosen path.
The turbocharged three-litre six-cylinder turbocharged diesel power plant is more than capable of delivering the needful.
This duality of its behaviour makes this second-generation Touareg very versatile.
Kids or fragile items on board? Take on the meek disposition and everyone is
tumbling out happy and smiling after rounds of "Are we there yet?".
Once you're cruising, the fuel efficiency already on show gets even mingier with the coasting function. That's when the eight-speed gearbox is disengaged, allowing the car to coast and saving on fuel. Aerodynamic tweaks and new low-roll resistance tyres ensure you maximise your fuel savings.
With permanent all-wheel drive (4MOTION), the Touareg is also game to take you off the paved road. The air suspension allows you to increase ground clearance by 30cm when you're off road. And if ever you get the chance to get up to higher speeds (upwards of 140kmh) it lowers itself for the anticipated charge.
Need to get there in a rush?
The Touareg can get you from 0-100kmh in 7.6 seconds. Seems a lot quicker in the cabin with all the glass and the huge panoramic roof letting in the light. The Touareg is nippy, throaty and eager as it strains at the leash.
It's such schizophrenic fun to have two contrasting personalities readily available
at the push of a lever.
Engine: 6-cylinder, 24 valves turbocharged
Max Power: 180kW@4,400rpm
Max Torque: 550Nm@2,750rpm
Transmission: 8-speed automatic
0-100kmh: 7.6 seconds
Top Speed: 220kmh
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