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Back Vehicle News Volkswagon Innovative 8-Speed Automatic Transmission and Single Cab Variant to Strengthen Volkswagen’s Amarok Range
12 Jul 2012

Innovative 8-Speed Automatic Transmission and Single Cab Variant to Strengthen Volkswagen’s Amarok Range

Volkswagen has increased the appeal of its award-winning Amarok range with the introduction of an innovative 8-speed automatic transmission on dual cab models, powered by the new TDI420 engine. Meanwhile, a single cab Amarok also makes its Australian debut, expanding Volkswagen’s existing dual cab ute range.

The Amarok is the first ute in Australia with an 8-speed automatic transmission. The additional gearing provides a greater spread of transmission ratios than a conventional five or six-speed automatic gearbox, affording very positive effects: the TDI engine is more effective in every rpm range, while being more fuel efficient and agile.

The 8th gear is configured for overdrive, reducing engine speed and saving fuel, while the low first gear is designed for off-road use and towing. This versatile set-up means the auto-equipped Amarok with permanent 4-wheel drive is just as capable in allterrain use as the manual version, without the need for additional reduction gearing.

The benefits of the automatic system, however, go further than just the gearing. The new transmission provides a high degree of ride comfort while off-roading and offers a fuel consumption figure of just 8.3 l/100km – up to 1l/100km less than key competitors.

The low rpm speeds generated also have a positive effect on engine noise, keeping volumes within the cabin comfortable at all times. In order to isolate the drive train as effectively as possible from engine vibrations, enhanced torque converters with optimised vibration dampers are also used.

The automatic transmission is combined with permanent 4-wheel drive and a new engine specification: the 132 kW 2.0-litre twinturbo TDI420. This has a maximum torque output of 420 Newton metres, producing exceptional performance and a relaxed ride. When towing a trailer, the ute can handle up to 3,000kg of trailer load with 300kg of downball weight.

Amarok Single Cab
Completing the Amarok range is the new single cab version with large cargo bed. The Amarok Single Cab enjoys the same vehicle length and wheelbase as its Dual Cab cousin, yet provides a cargo bed that is 2,205 millimetres in length (an increase of 650 millimetres) and also maintains ample cabin space for the driver, passenger and storage space behind the seats.

The cargo bed comfortably takes two pallets loaded sideways, one behind the other, and still leaves a further 60 centimetres of the length clear. With an unchanged loading gap of 1.22 metres between the wheel-arches, the cargo bed provides a total load area of 3.57m2, while six load-lashing rings, fitted as standard, enable even large and bulky items to be transported safely.

Pick-ups with a single cab are regarded as the classic ‘workhorse’ for tough jobs in the manual trades, construction and agriculture. What counts above all else in these areas of work is the size of the load space. However, Volkswagen engineers have also focused on providing ample space for the vehicle’s occupants, as well as room enough to easily store items behind the two front seats without compromising the seating position.

The vehicle’s exceptional interior dimensions make it the most spacious in its class. The vehicle’s finely tuned ergonomics are typical of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles and the Amarok.

Easy entry, a generous seating layout and lots of head room characterise the workspace behind the wheel.

Under the bonnet Volkswagen employs the same high-torque 2.0-litre engines found in the existing dual cab manual range: the TSI300, TDI340 and TDI400. Customers can choose rearwheel drive or the selectable 4MOTION 4-wheel drive with low range (TDI400 only) – in each case coupled to a six-speed manual transmission.

The Amarok single cab’s fuel consumption is very low: the rear-wheel drive TDI340 version needing just 7.3 litres per 100 kilometres, CO2 emissions of 189 g/km. Meanwhile the two-level regulated bi-turbo charging system of the TDI400 provides a remarkably low average consumption of just 7.8 litres of diesel per 100 kilometres.

In addition to the standard electronic differential lock, a mechanical differential lock on the rear axle comes standard on 4MOTION models and is available as an option on 2WD versions. The heavy-duty suspension enables the vehicle to carry a payload ranging between 1,174kg and 1,394kg depending on model. When towing a trailer, the ute can handle up to 3,000kg of trailer load with 300kg of downball weight.

Amarok Range
Safety remains as ever a top priority across the Amarok range, with standard equipment including ABS and ESP, as well as front airbags for both driver and passenger on all models. Exceeding the market standard, the single cab Amarok is also equipped as standard with side and thorax airbags, mirroring its dual cab counterpart. Also included, of course, are height-adjustable head restraints and three-point safety belts at all seating positions. In front, the belts have belt tensioners and on the driver’s side a visual and acoustic belt warning system.

Numerous other features guarantee a high level of active safety on all Amaroks. For example, the Electronic Stability Program (ESP) with Brake Assist is standard equipment. Another feature contributing to safety is “Off-Road Mode” – activated by the press of a button – which is enabled up to a vehicle speed of 130km/h.

In this mode, the ESP system, electronic differential locks (EDL), anti-slip regulation (ASR) and anti-lock braking system (ABS) are all tuned for challenging off-road conditions.

The ABS system can reduce braking distance both off-road and on gravel road surfaces, often significantly depending on the road composition. When “Off-Road Mode” is activated while the ute is driven at less than 30km/h, Hill Descent Assist is also activated; it holds driving speed constant on steep descents by means of targeted brake actuations. When Hill Descent Assist is activated the driver can individually adapt the vehicle’s speed to a driving situation by accelerating or braking, including in the neutral gear position.

Amarok comes fitted with Heavy Duty suspension as standard, affording a GVM of 3,040kg for maximum carrying capacity.

Meanwhile, those who do not use their Amarok for carrying heavy loads can opt for Comfort springs at no extra charge.

While this option provides a much more comfortable ride, the GVM is reduced by just 220kg to an impressive 2,820kg.

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has also taken the introduction of these new models as an opportunity to update the Amarok’s equipment, with highlights including stainless steel sports bar and side steps now as standard on the Highline model, Bluetooth mobile phone connectivity, cruise control and a multi-function leather steering wheel as standard across the entire 4MOTION range.

A style pack is also available for the Single Cab that includes bodycoloured front bumper, 16-inch alloy wheels and fog lights.

Extending the flexibility of the range and affording greater opportunity for personalisation, both the base and Trendline Amaroks can now be ordered as a Cab Chassis set-up. This will be welcome news for rural and fleet customers who demand a ute that can be configured to their specific needs and requirements.



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