Volkswagen Amarok 2023 – TEST.  It was great, it’s even better!

Volkswagen Amarok 2023 – TEST. It was great, it’s even better!

you know that Volkswagen Amarok wasn’t it the first time it was taken by a brand at all? People who don’t pay attention to commercial vehicles probably don’t know this. In the years 1989-1997, the Taro model was leaving the Hannover factory, which was just a Toyota Hilux with a different badge. Previously, this segment was filled with an open version of the Caddy, and the roots of such a body in the brand can be seen in the T1 and T2 models with an open top.

Now it comes to play Volkswagen Amarok 2023. Although visually it is very similar to its predecessor, technically and structurally it has nothing to do with it. Plus, there’s a lot of Ford genes in his DNA, which turned out to be good here.

Volkswagen Amarok 2023 – TEST. Another step in the right direction

It’s no secret that the Amarok is a joint venture with Ford, which previously focused on commercial vehicles. Both arguments quickly found a common language and began to work on a wide range of vehicles with ease.

For Volkswagen, Ford was a real gift – especially in terms of pickup truck production. First of all, the “blue circle” cut its teeth on such cars and built its strength on them. In addition, their experience was greater here and allowed to create a better design.

However, the Germans also imposed their demands. Among them was a diesel V6 under the hood, which convinced many customers of the brand, who decided to buy the first Amarok after the facelift. Thanks to this, the best feature of this car has been preserved here, and at the same time it has been put in a better design.

The design of the new generation is largely based on its predecessor. The lines were very modern, adding a few stylistic flavors to the front apron. The rear, on the other hand, is distinguished by the Amarok inscription placed on the side of the box. The angular wheel arches with housing add to the off-road character – regardless of the equipment version.

The cabin is very modern

Here, too, the association with Ford can be seen, as both cars share a large screen multimedia system. It was placed in a vertical orientation and filled the entire center console with it. Thanks to this, we can access a lot of information here without switching between tabs in a row.

Behind the steering wheel there are digital gauges. The display here has a high resolution, and its images, as well as the speed of operation, leave nothing to be desired.

Interestingly, the materials used in the cabinet, although difficult, look very attractive and well packed. Even on large bumps, overcome at high speed, none of the components made unpleasant noises.

In addition, we find very comfortable seats here (although not the best ErgoActive models anymore) and a lot of space in the cabin, especially in the second row. The abundance of storage rooms allows easy maintenance of the system.

The new Volkswagen Amarok is more spacious and has better payload

Here again we see the effects of the partnership with Ford. The new design of this car allowed to create a large crate, which easily fits two Euro pallets (around).

Leaf springs at the back, in turn, allowed to increase the payload. This is between 780 to 1045 kg. The Amarok, on the other hand, will take a closed trailer weighing up to 3,500 tonnes, which gives the team a GVW of 6,400-6,500 kg.

So it’s safe to say that Amarok’s versatility has clearly increased, which will translate into more practicality for people who use such vehicles actively. However, the red copy I drove had several hundred kilograms in the back in the form of mud bags, which did not affect its behavior on the road.

The first chapter, or how does the Amarok work on the asphalt?

Well, in such situations, I feel like a fish out of water. It’s a pickup truck, so don’t expect the comfort of modern SUVs. A little rawness is visible, but it doesn’t bother me at all.

First of all, despite the standard suspension structure, The Amarok handles bumps well and it doesn’t fly like crazy. It also has a very good steering, which does not have a short ratio, but it is communicative and allows you to feel the car easily.

I really like the silence here. It’s a well-insulated car with a very comfortable cabin, even at higher speeds. This shows that long journeys will not be a problem.

It is also impossible not to mention the good 3.0 V6 engine, which produces 240 hp and 600 Nm. Contrary to appearances, this is not a Volkswagen model, but a Ford one. The American concern developed this engine and combined it with a 10-speed automatic, known from other models.

The effect? The dynamics are very good, the flexibility too, and the fuel consumption seems to be at a reasonable level. However, we will only do detailed tests during the regular test of this car.

Volkswagen Amarok 2023 V6 TDI

Chapter two, off-road. Now the Volkswagen Amarok feels at home here

One of the weaknesses of the predecessor was the car. It didn’t disappoint, but it lacked a lot of off-road features that would have made it easier to drive on paved roads.

Together with off-road driving experts, we went to the track near Książ Wielkopolski to check the possibilities of this car. For the first time, we have a whole section of driving lanes – from 2H, to 4A, 4H and 4L. Translate in order: rear-wheel drive, direct four-wheel drive, permanent four-wheel drive and reduction gear. Easy?

Volkswagen Amarok 2023 V6 TDI

The first provides complete versatility and, with a little desire, will provide fun and backcasting light. The key, however, is the 4A drive, allowing continuous driving in the AWD setting, also on pavement and at high speeds. Here, therefore, one of the characteristics of the predecessor is preserved.

The new drive, however, offered a rear differential lock and reduction gear. In addition, the electric has several driving modes that adjust the power distribution to each wheel in a suitable way. Thanks to this, Amarok can finally cope with the most difficult conditions. According to our pilots, with whom we drove off-road, it is a good material for a caravan. Just a few adjustments are enough to make it work even in difficult conditions.

The standard Amarok has an approach angle of 30 degrees, a ramp angle of 21 degrees and a departure angle of 26-30 degrees. The depth of the waves is 800 mm and the ground clearance is 24 cm. These values ​​vary slightly depending on the trim level, as one of them makes a significant difference.

Volkswagen Amarok 2023 – TEST. What does it offer, how much does it cost?

On the Polish market, we will only see the passenger Amarok, only with two cabins and full equipment. Three versions are available: Style, PanAmericana and Aventura. The first is more common in terms of the level offered and is aimed at less demanding customers.

The PanAmericana dialect has many off-road characters. Here we find AT tires (on 18-inch wheels), crate tube (with electric roller shutter), and body stickers. The offer is always closed with the Aventura variant. Here we find 20-inch wheels and a more “elegant” look of the car.

The price is very affordable. You have to pay PLN 229,000 net for the Cinema style, PLN 249,000 net for the PanAmericana and PLN 269,000 net for the Aventura. So the planning of the releases is clearly visible.

Of course, Volkswagen is already preparing a complete list of accessories. There will be a hardtop for the crate, various stylistic features, but also interesting options, such as a roof tent. So everyone will find something for themselves.

The new Amarok is traveling to Europe and South Africawhere it is designed together with the Ford Ranger. Undoubtedly, it will be a car with great potential for success with a special group of customers. It has the best features of its predecessor (engine and comfort), but complements them with better off-road ability and great handling. And that makes me very happy.