2020 Volkswagen Touareg 190 TDI (car review)

WELL priced, and delivering a beautifully executed upmarket feel, the 2020 Volkswagen Touareg 190 TDI features a grunty 190kW 3.0-litre turbo diesel V6 pushing out 600Nm of torque, paired with an 8-speed automatic transmission.

It’s that very engine, with its abundance of power, and Volkswagen’s oustanding 4MOTION all-wheel drive system, that makes the Touareg package so attractive. It’s hard to go past quite frankly, unless of course you want a seven seat SUV.

You see, the beefy looking VW only comes with five seats. So, if you have a tribe of kids, it’s probably not for you. The plus though, is the tonne of interior space it has. It’s roomy and spacious for everyone.

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There’s plenty of boot space (810-litres with the seats up and 1800-litres with the second row folded flat) for trips away, and a 3.5 tonne towing capacity to boot. Those second row seats recline and slide too, which is a nice touch in an SUV that retails for $80,000.

The cabin also features a 9.2-inch infotainment system with a Discover Pro 8-speaker sound system, satellite navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, dual zone climate control air conditioning, and pretty aluminium decorative inserts in the dash and doors.

There’s also loads of leather, including the very comfortable powered and heated front seats, rear seats and steering wheel. In addition, you get an automatic opening and closing tailgate, shifting paddles, stainless steel scuff plates, and chrome roof rails.

Key-less entry and a push button start also feature. An $8,000 Innovision options package a larger 15-inch infotainment system, a colour head-up display, illuminated scuff plates, a better sound system, and multi-colour ambient lighting.

For the record, it comes in two forms for now, the 190 TDI we’re driving here, and the 190 TDI Premium, which adds such goodies as air suspension, a slightly lower ride height and 20-inch wheels (as opposed to the stock 19-inch offering on our test vehicle).

A giant killing V8 version is on its way. Known as the R-Line, it features a host of sporty add-ons and is due to arrive in Australia later in the year. Like it’s V6 Touareg siblings, it’s also a diesel. No petrol variants are available.

On the road, the traditional steel springs deliver a comfortable and slightly cushy ride, which is nice, yet not air suspension nice. That’s okay though, as when you remember that Volkswagen has gone for a premium feel with the Touareg, it makes sense.

Fuel economy is a claimed 7.4-litres/100km. Try as we might, we couldn’t get that close, and averaged between 8.6 and 8.9-litres/100km. It has a 75-litre fuel tank, which may not be enough if you plan to long haul in it.

Despite being the perfect short haul tow vehicle for those who want a premium driving experience, it’s likely to spend much of its time for most owners, in the city, being a cruisy and comfortable family SUV, and that’s okay.

It’s big, it’s comfortable and quite unsurprisingly, it’s safe too, with adaptive cruise control, loads of airbags, driver fatique detection, front assist with a city emergency brake, lane assist with adaptive lane guidance, traffic jam assist and emergency assist.

There’s also LED headlights with LED daytime driving lights, a low light sensor with automatic headlight function, park Assist, parking bay and parallel parking assistance, and a rear view camera with dynamic guidance lines.

If that wasn’t enough, there’s also side assist and lane change assist. It really does not miss out on much as far as entry level vehicles go, and if there was a way to summarise our Touareg 190 TDI experience, it’s simply this.

It isn’t often this author’s significant other asks how much a car is and what it can tow (because we have a vintage caravan), but after three drives of the Volkswagen, that’s exactly what she wanted to know.

If we also tell you that she’s the most anti-car person on the planet and it takes a truck load to impress her, then that says more than any review quite frankly, and tells you how good the Touareg actually is.

So, if you’re on the hunt for a five seat SUV with a premium feel but a reasonable price, this should definitely be on your shopping list. And there’s even some pretty colours to paint your 2020 Volkswagen Touareg 190 TDI in.

These include Pure White (as tested), Antimonial Silver Metallic, Aquamarine Blue Metallic, Malbec Red Metallic, Silicon Grey Metallic, and our personal favourite, Deep Black Pearl Effect. Anything other than Pure White will set yuu back an extra $2,000.

It’s priced at $80,790 plus on road costs, or around $87,150 drive away, depending on colour choice, and comes with a 5-star ANCAP safety rating. It has a 5-year unlimited kilometre warranty and a range of service packages are also available.

Our test vehicle was supplied by Volkswagen Australia. To find out more abou tthe 2020 Volkswagen Touareg 190 TDI, contact your local Volkswagen dealer.


Driving experience
Exterior styling
Interior look and feel
Technology and connectivity
Family friendliness
Value for money


Pros - great cabin space; quiet and refined drive; plenty of grunt.
Cons - no seven seat option; misses air suspension; pricey cost for better bits.
Mark Holgate
Mark Holgate
A journalist with more than 24 years experience, Mark Holgate has worked with a number of regional, suburban and metropolitan newspapers, as well as stints with motoring specific publications like Which Car? Motorsport News, Auto Action and Street Machine. He is also a contributor to DriveTribe.


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<strong>Pros -</strong> great cabin space; quiet and refined drive; plenty of grunt.<br> <strong>Cons -</strong> no seven seat option; misses air suspension; pricey cost for better bits.2020 Volkswagen Touareg 190 TDI (car review)