Volkswagen Touran On Test

The Mighty Touran

Ever have one of those days when you realise you have too many kids, with too many toys and not enough car?

Yep, me too.

Fortunately VW have predicted this and have built the Touran for just such epiphanies; the car boasts up to 7 seats in multiple variations offering space for people, animals and stuff. The options and total available space means almost any combination can be accommodated.

Handling bulk haulage however is just part of the story – for the driver there is much more on offer than a few hours of the rare pleasure that is travelling with kids. The model on test offered a clear and very user-friendly sat nav, a great view in very comfortable seats and surprisingly generous dollops of genuine driving pleasure.

While I am obviously not saying this is as lively as a hot hatch, the 1.6 TDi is significantly more rewarding than other 7-seaters I have tested from the Zafira to the XC90 and many inbetween. VW have a habit of this, but their reputation for creating solid and useable vehicles is probably better demonstrated in this car than any other – while you would expect a Golf to be nimble and entertaining it is far less intuitive to discover that this rather bulbous truck can be hustled. My backside tells me it is pretty much a match for standard Mondeo and Insignia models.

While you may not consider this an important feature in an MPV, I have yet to find a better way of silencing my tribe than an enthusiastically taken roundabout.

A more measured approach will still deliver sedate and comfortable progress as well as a genuine 50+mpg performance from the diminutive 1.6 diesel engine, and  a high-class ride from quality suspension. There is no wallowing either – lumps and bumps are just dealt with.

The multi-media entertainment is also high-class; the cockpit is an unfussy and businesslike environment but its performance is better than most in this sector. Streaming music from the phone showed a well balanced and rich tone even at lower volumes.

The many seating options are also well thought out – almost everything can be adjusted with one hand, there are cubby holes that can safely store valuables such as laptops and 2 year olds, and the boot in 5-seat mode is both huge and easy to access – aided with an electric tailgate.

If you are in the market for a large MPV, there is no reason I can think of to not buy a Touran. It does everything well, it rewards both gentle and aggressive driving, and it holds its price better than pretty much anything else.

Tech Spec

OTR Price – £26,745
CO2 g/km – 119
Mpg – 61 (54 on test)
Power – 115Ps
Torque – 250Nm
Top Speed – 116Mph
0-60 mph – 11.9Sec

words and pics – Mark Wolens