2023 Volkswagen Amarok Revealed With Ford DNA And Nearly 300 HP

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Developed from the ground up, the new Amarok has practically nothing in common with its predecessor which has sold more than 830,000 units since 2010. It avoided Volkswagen’s bones from adopting Ford’s updated T6 platform that has underpinned the latest Ranger. Mind you, this is more than just a rebadged version of the Blue Oval midsize truck as VW has gone to great lengths to give the workhorse its own visual identity.

The new Ute will be available at launch in single-cab and dual-cab body styles, with the latter stretching at 5,350 millimeters (20.6 inches). That makes it 96 mm (3.8 inches) longer than the pickup it replaces and features an extended wheelbase of 173 mm (6.8 inches), now measuring 3,270 mm (128.7 inches). With the distance between the axles increased by more than the actual overall length, that means the overhangs have been shortened for better off-road capability by increasing approach and departure angles.

The width is reduced by 34 mm (1.4 inches) to 1910 mm (75.2 inches) while the height is increased by 10 mm (0.4 inches) to 1888 mm (74.3 inches), although that depends on the wheel and tire selection. Since we’re talking about shoes, VW will be selling the Amarok with standard 17-inch alloy wheels, but the luxury ones will get a 21-inch alloy set for the first time.

Speaking of unusual roads, the fording depth of the Amarok 2023 has been significantly increased from 500 mm to 800 mm while all-wheel drive will be standard in many markets. Customers will be able to choose from two 4Motion settings, one with a selectable 4×4 and the other with a permanent all-paw setting. Depending on the region, there will also be a cheaper entry-level variant with rear-wheel drive. Based on engine choice, a towing capacity of up to 3,500 kilograms will be offered.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok
2023 Volkswagen Amarok

Four diesel engines and one petrol plant have been set up, all benefiting from turbocharging. In the African market, VW Commercial Vehicles will sell the new Amarok with a 2.0 TDI producing 148 hp (110 kW) while other regions will get a more powerful version of the oil-burner with 168 hp (125 kW). The more expensive diesel-fueled Amaroks will rely on a four-pot bi-turbo setup with 201 hp (150 kW) or 207 hp (154 kW).

The range-topping diesel engine will be a 3.0-liter V6 producing 238 hp (177 kW) or 247 hp (184 kW). In areas where gasoline engines are preferred, the next-generation Amarok will boast a 2.3-liter unit producing 298 hp (222 kW). A ten-speed automatic transmission will be standard for all engines producing 207 hp (154 kW) or higher while the rest will be linked to a six-speed automatic and a five- or six-speed manual.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok
2023 Volkswagen Amarok

VW is proud to say the maximum payload capacity has been increased to 1,160 kg (2,557 lbs) while the roof can support a static load of 350 kg (772 lbs), enough for a four-person roof tent that will be available as an official accessory. The list of options will once again include a hardtop cover for the cargo bed to give the Amarok an SUV look. From bull bars to snorkels, the truck gets a variety of extras.

Not only is the exterior completely revamped, but so is the cabin where the vertical infotainment takes center stage. Running on a slightly modified version of the Ford SYNC 4, the touchscreen measures 10 or 12 inches depending on the trim level. It sits next to a digital instrument cluster with a diagonal of eight inches on the cheaper model and 12 inches on the top trim.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok
2023 Volkswagen Amarok

VW aims to sell the Amarok 2023 in five different flavors: the off-road-oriented Amarok, Life, Style, and the newly added PanAmericana along with the luxury-focused Aventura. More than 20 driver assistance systems have been crammed into the truck, as well as matrix LED headlights and Harman Kardon sound settings not offered on other vehicles.

Ford will begin production of the all-new Amarok in September at its Silverton plant in Pretoria, South Africa. That said, VW Commercial Vehicles will continue to assemble the first-generation model at Pacheco, Argentina for the South American region.


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