The T-Prime Concept GTE points to third-gen flagship SUV in design and technological terms.
It looks like the real article for showrooms, but this SUV is still being dubbed as a concept. Volkswagen has staged the world premiere of the T-Prime Concept GTE in China this week previewing the nextgeneration Touareg. The T-Prime shares the same design language as Volkswagen’s upmarket saloons. The only probable elements that aren’t destined for showrooms are the flashy side-view mirrors and the huge eyecatching wheels. The show car’s 2+2 layout, the third-gen Touareg is mostly likely to get a total of seven seats in the 2+3+2 configuration – just like in the Audi Q7 sister-model SUV. Conventional dials and functions in the T-Prime have also been replaced with digital versions. As well, they can be functioned by voice and gesture control systems.
Volkswagen says the eight-speed automatic transmission in the T-Prime is operated via a scroll button. Along with that digital fascia, it appears you have largely seen what the new Touareg would look like inside. The brand’s new plug-in ambitions are based on petrol-electric drive trains. A 2.0-litre four-cylinder is being hooked up with electric motors to yield a combined 381hp. Volkswagen says the T-Prime can sprint from 0-100kph in a realistic 6.0sec.
Pure electric driving range is rated at 50km – the norm for plug-in hybrid-powered vehicles in China. The MLB platform of the VW Group has been designed to accommodate alternative drive trains and is currently used by the Audi Q7 and Bentley Bentayga. Porsche’s next-generation Cayenne and Lamborghini’s brand-new Urus will also be underpinned by this platform. Of course, the new Touareg will be getting conventional petrol and diesel motors, but the new trend in luxury SUVs is plug-in hybrid.