Editor: Jason “The Bok” – Date: 06 October 2017
The doublecab pickup market or as we know it in South Africa “bakkie market,” is fast becoming an increasingly competitive luxury based segment of utility vehicles. What were previously designed as workhorses with some form of creature comfort, now seem to be more luxury off-roaders with some form of workhorse.
Volkswagen brought us the Amarok some years back, however, with the recent introduction of powerful luxurious doublecabs, such as the Ford Ranger 3.2-litre Wildtrack, Toyota 2.8-litre Hilux and soon to be released Mercedes-Benz X-Class, there was some talk of a more powerful Amarok coming to market. Well, Volkswagen certainly addressed this demand, with the most powerful production bakkie on our roads, the Amarok 3.0 V6 TDI.
What Has Been Updated?
The big change comes primarily in the form of the powerplant under the bonnet. While previous Amarok’s featured an impressive 2.0-litre engine, this updated model with the 3.0-litre V6 TDI has taken things to the next level. The engine produces 165 kW with 550 Nm of torque, if that isn’t enough to impress you, it also features an overboost function, which pushes the power up to 180 kW and 580 Nm of torque in 10-second bursts. The result of all of this power is a massive solid doublecab which will sprint from 0 – 100 km/h in a mere 8.0 seconds. To make for the fast shifting of gears, the Amarok 3.0-litre V6 TDI with its Highline, Highline Plus or Extreme trim is also mated to an 8-speed automated gearbox and 4MOTION all-wheel drive.
Another major update which the Amarok has received comes in the way of its interior. The overall cabin space features an ergonomic design and premium materials, such as soft-touch rubbers, silver trim panels and a much more luxury SUV feel, despite the odd bit of hard plastic surfaces. The optional Vianna heated leather seats make for a very comfortable and luxuriously appointed cabin space.
The addition of Volkswagen’s touchscreen and proximity-based multimedia system allows for media to be delivered through sources including Apple CarPlay, and also features the likes of USB as a media source, Bluetooth for mobile telephony and the ability to utilise voice-guided navigation if the option has been fitted. Another nice option is the light as sight package, which adds features such as an auto-dimming rearview mirror and lights which adapt to your surrounds. A backing-up reverse camera and several parking sensors make parking surprisingly easy, despite the large sized body.
Lastly, the Amarok now has the option of being fitted with bright and impressive Bi-Xenon headlights with LED daytime running lamps. The updated lighting makes the latest generation immediately more distinguishable.
The Grips Of It
This latest generation of Amarok adds many additional creature comforts to the mix and ultimately even more fierce competition to the doublecab pickup market. Its hugely powerful motor, clever technology and further improved looks, make it, in my opinion, one of the nicest doublecabs of them all!
2.0 TDI 103kW 4×2 Manual Comfortline R487 700
2.0 TDI 103kW 4MOTION Manual Comfortline R544 900
2.0 BiTDI 132kW 4×2 Manual Highline R521 900
2.0 BiTDI 132kW 4MOTION Manual Highline R573 000
2.0 BiTDI 132kW 4×2 Auto Highline R539 400
2.0 BiTDI 132kW 4×2 Auto Highline Plus R591 900
2.0 BiTDI 132kW 4MOTION Auto Highline R590 600
2.0 BiTDI 132kW 4MOTION Auto Highline Plus R643 100
2.0 BiTDI 132kW 4MOTION Auto Extreme R673 600
3.0 TDI V6 165kW 4MOTION Auto Highline R665 700 (As Tested)options fitted
options fitted incl: Leather Seats, Satelite Navigation, PDC, Bi-Xenon Headlamps with DRL, 19-inch Alloys, Metallic Paint and the Light and Sight Package
3.0 TDI V6 165kW 4MOTION Auto Highline Plus R716 600
3.0 TDI V6 165kW 4MOTION Auto Extreme R748 600
The Amarok is sold with a 3-year/100 000 km warranty, 5-year/90 000 km service plan and a 6-year anti-corrosion warranty. Service intervals are applicable at 15 000 km.