This was our second experience putting an Amarok through its towing paces, having previously tested the Trendline 4WD in August last year. The previous model performed well with our boat on the back, but lacked some desirable features.
Straight off the bat, we’re on to a winner with the Highline featuring the reverse camera we missed first time round. In combination with its mirrors, lining up the trailer was a much easier affair. The only issue we came across was an incompatible adapter, which resulted in an intermittent indicator fault.
|At a glance|
|Model||2016 Volkswagen Amarok V6 HL|
|Engine||3.0 Turbo Charged V6|
|ANCAP Safety Rating||5 Star|
|Power||165kw at 2500rpm-3500rpm|
|Body Style||Double cab utility|
|Towing Capacity Braked||3500kg|
|Towing Capacity Unbraked||750kg|
For the most part of our tow test, the vehicle was stable with only a few bumps translating to the cabin on uneven surfaces. It had good power and accelerated briskly uphill at 2750rpm to 80km/h, while the kick down was quick.
Regardless of whether the vehicle was loaded or unloaded, the ride was comfortable and the Amarok made easy work of towing the boat. Much like the Trendline, the gearbox kept the engine working hard opting for a high gear as and when necessary.
Manual mode also performed well, cruising at about 2000rpm at 80km/h on the motorway. That was until we selected 8th gear and transmission dropped back to only 1550rpm – at this point, it sounded like the engine was being overworked so we quickly reselected auto mode. The computer didn’t throw us out of a gear and allowed us to have a lot of control. Positive tracking on the motorway reassured us that this would be a comfortable towing vehicle if you had long journeys to make.
We were happy with the performance of the Amarok Highline and felt that it had managed to resolve some of our previous small complaints. This is a good example of the way the way utes are evolving from workhorse to multipurpose vehicles, offering comfort and practicality.