Volkswagen announced a very special vehicle at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show, and at the same time revealed that it would be the last of its kind.
The 2020 Volkswagen Touareg V8 TDI will be the final V8 diesel from the brand, which has been dogged by the Dieselgate fiasco. Now, though, with the scandal firmly behind it, it celebrates the torque that diesel brings, with this, a 4.0-liter V8 engine with two turbochargers.
It brings to mind the old Volkswagen Touareg R50 from back in 2008. Anyone who has driven one will almost certainly recall not only the amazing soundtrack from the V10 engine but will mostly remember it for its tsunami of torque.
With around 627 pound-feet of torque, the Touareg R50 was very, very quick indeed and very good on fuel as well.
But its real secret was how well it performed when off-road. Thanks to low-range and height-adjustable suspension, it would outperform many vehicles supposedly designed for rough terrain.
The new Touareg V8 TDI is more of a crossover and aimed at transporting people in luxury with the occasional off-road jaunt where needed.
To do this, it also sets the standard for torque in its segment but borrows a bit of tech from models higher up in the Volkswagen hierarchy.
The 4.0-liter engine produces 415 horsepower, but a staggering 664 lb-ft of torque. This will propel the new Toe-rag (as it’s affectionately known) from 0-62mph in just 4.9 seconds. Not bad for something that weighs around two-tonnes metric.
In those two vehicles, the V8 is helped along by a tiny little electric fan, which they call a compressor. This spins up instantly (a benefit of running a 48-volt electrical system – effectively making it a mild-hybrid) which gets rid of any turbo lag from the larger turbochargers which take a bit more time to spool up.
Thus, the Touareg V8 TDI is lag-free and punchy.
But don’t expect too many more of these kinds of SUVs from the brand.
In speaking with Top Gear, Jurgen Stackmann, the chief of VW’s marketing department, said that he believes it will become a collector’s item.
“I’ve met a lot of Touareg V10 TDI customers, and those that have one will never sell it. It’ll be the same idea with the V8. It’s for those customers who want something very special, and they’ll get it,” he told Top Gear. “Most likely, it’ll be the last V8 diesel car you’ll see.”
We’re just glad that Volkswagen decided to use an SUV to deliver its final V8 diesel, but so far we haven’t had any word on pricing.
Regardless, it’s probably worth putting down a deposit. Once they’re gone, we won’t ever see the likes of this kind of vehicle ever again.