Car re­view

Public Sector Manager - - Contents - Writer: Ashref Is­mail

New Amarok is a beauty and a beast

It has been a seven-year wait for Volk­swa­gen's new 3.0-litre V6 165kW TDI en­gine Amarok. Lauded for its car-like driv­ing fea­tures and low fuel con­sump­tion, the 2.0 litre Amarok did not re­ally set the sales charts alight, with many die-hard bakkie fans ap­pre­hen­sive of a small-ca­pac­ity en­gine in a big dou­ble-cab body.

The new 3.0-litre V6 TDI en­gine is the only six-cylin­der diesel en­gine in the seg­ment.The top- of -the range en­gine de­liv­ers 165kW of power avail­able at 550 Nm of torque chan­nelled through its stan­dard eight-speed au­to­matic gear­box.The V6 en­gine pushes the Amarok to a top speed of 193km/h and sprints from zero to 100km/h in 8.0 sec­onds.

From the out­side the new Amarok dis­tin­guishes it­self from the pre­vi­ous model with a re­designed front bumper and ra­di­a­tor grille in­cor­po­rat­ing front fog lights, new al­loy wheels and a third brake-light with LED tech­nol­ogy. Aligned with the lat­est Volk­swa­gen DNA seen in the new Caddy, Trans­porter and forth­com­ing Crafter, hor­i­zon­tal lines dom­i­nate the front of the new model, with much cleaner-look­ing an­gled folds and edges.

In­side the cab the changes are more prom­i­nent with an all-new dash­board de­sign which in­cor­po­rates Volk­swa­gen's mod­u­lar in­fo­tain­ment sys­tem with touch-screen ra­dio, App-Con­nect, Blue­tooth and USB in­ter­face (iPod/iPhone com­pat­i­ble).

A com­pre­hen­sive list of safety equip­ment comes stan­dard with ev­ery new Amarok, in­clud­ing four airbags, elec­tronic sta­bil­i­sa­tion pro­gramme and Volk­swa­gen's award-win­ning Au­to­matic Post Col­li­sion Brak­ing Sys­tem which can re­duce the chance or sever­ity of a sec­ondary ac­ci­dent in the event of a col­li­sion.

The Trend­line equip­ment trim level has been re­placed with the Com­fort line equip­ment trim level re­sult­ing in ad­di­tional stan­dard fea­tures. High­line Plus has been added to the model line-up for cus­tomers look­ing for ad­di­tional top-end con­ve­nience and com­fort as stan­dard fea­tures. Ex­treme re­places Ul­ti­mate as the main de­riv­a­tive in the Amarok model line-up. Ex­treme will be avail­able with an op­tion of 4MOTION au­to­matic 2.0 BITDI with 132Kw or 3.0 TDI V6 with 165Kw en­gine.

Un­der the skin, the Amarok's run­ning gear has not been changed fun­da­men­tally from the pre­vi­ous gen­er­a­tion.The base de­riv­a­tive is the 2.0 TDI de­liv­er­ing 103Kw with a six-speed man­ual trans­mis­sion and an op­tion of per­ma­nent 4MOTION four-wheel and two-wheel drive sys­tems. Also car­ried over from the pre­vi­ous model is the tried-and-tested 2.0 BITDI de­liv­er­ing 132 Kw. This en­gine is of­fered with six-speed man­ual and eight-speed au­to­matic trans­mis­sions. Cus­tomers have the op­tion of the se­lectable 4MOTION on the de­riv­a­tives with man­ual trans­mis­sion or per­ma­nent 4MOTION four-wheel drive sys­tem on de­riv­a­tives with an au­to­matic trans­mis­sion.

Both the six-speed man­ual trans­mis­sion and eight­speed au­to­matic trans­mis­sion have been op­ti­mised for the Amarok's high torque val­ues.The large num­ber of gears al­lows a greater trans­mis­sion ra­tio spread to be achieved com­pared to a con­ven­tional au­to­matic trans­mis­sion.

The new model re­tains the pre­vi­ous Amarok's di­men­sions: it mea­sures 5.25m long, 2.23m wide and 1.83m high.The Amarok's cargo bed is 1.55 me­tres long and 1.62 me­tres wide which means its load area con­tin­ues to mea­sure 2.52 m2. This means a Euro pal­let can be loaded trans­versely.

The cargo box has four lash­ing rings for se­cur­ing the load fit­ted in each cor­ner.The half-me­tre plat­form gate height boosts the good cargo ca­pac­ity. This is due to the low sill height, which is 78 cm high. With a max­i­mum gross weight of up to 3 080 kg, the Amarok can trans­port bulky as well as very heavy loads.The max­i­mum pay­load is 936 kg. De­pend­ing on the over­all con­fig­u­ra­tion it can also tow loads of up to 3.3 tonnes.

The new Amarok is ex­pected to ap­peal to a sim­i­lar pro­file of buy­ers as in the past, re­tain­ing its po­si­tion as a tech­ni­cally ad­vanced pick-up which is as com­fort­able to drive as it is rugged. With its new en­gine and even more car-like fea­tures and cab it is also likely to pique the in­ter­est of buy­ers who may pre­vi­ously have shopped in the clas­sic SUV seg­ment.

Since its launch in 2010, over 29 000 Amarok units (sin­gle and dou­ble cabs) have been sold in South Africa.

The Amarok model range comes stan­dard with a three-year/100 000 km man­u­fac­turer war­ranty, fiveyear/90 000 km Au­to­mo­tion Ser­vice Plan and six-year anti-cor­ro­sion war­ranty.The ser­vice in­ter­val is 15 000 km.

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