The Volkswagen Touareg may not be the most popular crossover on the market, but it shares some pretty special DNA. Specifically, this German crossover is built on the same platform as the Porsche Cayenne and the Audi Q7. It's not as sporty as those cars, but it still has plenty to offer.

Pricing and Equipment

The Volkswagen Touareg is surprisingly pricey for a crossover from a mainstream brand. Its base V6 Sport starts out at a whopping $42,705. What’s more, it's an “Order Only” model, meaning the chances of seeing it on a dealer’s lot are slim to none.

Standard equipment on the V6 Sport includes:

  • Bi-xenon headlights and LED taillights
  • A 6.5-inch touchscreen for the sound system
  • Dual-zone climate control
  • Heated front seats

Also available are four more-upscale models, including the Sport w/Technology, Lux, Executive, and Executive with 21-inch Mallory Wheels.

Performance Pros

The base V6 engine delivers plenty of might, while the optional TDI engine has massive torque for towing. Additionally, a recent reduction of weight has led to the Touareg being a nimbler handler than before.

  • 280-horsepower V6 comes standard
  • A massive 407 pound-feet of torque from the diesel TDI engine.
  • Terrain Tech option adds to the crossover's off-road capabilities.
  • Tows up to 7,700 pounds.

Performance Cons

Though its handling is better, the Touareg is still not as nimble as some of its competitors. We do know that this chassis is capable of more, but VW focused more on the model’s luxury than its performance.

Interior Pros

Volkswagen Touareg Interior

The VW Touareg’s cabin is downright luxurious, unusual since it is not part of a luxury brand, per se. It also has lots of rear-seat room and plenty of cargo room.

  • Up to 64 cubic feet of cargo room.
  • Very quiet, even on bumpy roads.

Interior Cons

An SUV of this size should have a third row, but it's not even an option on the Touareg. Additionally, the oversized center console eats up front-seat space and cramps the driver and passenger.

The Most Pleasant Surprise

While its luxurious amenities are unexpected, the Touareg's safety features are an even nicer surprise. Nine airbags create a cocoon of safety in the event of a crash. What’s more, optional features like blind spot assist, lane keeping assist, adaptive cruise, and forward collision warning are all welcome.

The Least Pleasant Surprise

For a crossover that shares its platform with the Cayenne and Q7, the Touareg is a painfully average performer. We expected livelier handling.

The Bottom Line

Volkswagen Touareg

The Volkswagen Touareg is a good option for buyers who want something different than the typical crossovers on the market. However, its starting price encroaches on the Audi Q7’s $48,300 base price, which leads us to question whether we would be willing to shell out that kind of cash for a VW.