The Diesel Manual First-Gen Volkswagen Touareg Is What Off-Road Dreams Are Made Of

The first-generation VW Touareg is an epic machine. Some say that it — along with other impressive engineering feats like the Bugatti Veyron supercar, Audi A2 fuel-sipper and VW Phaeton luxury sedan — was part of Ferdinand Piëch’s onslaught of automotive “moonshots” meant to show the world that VW Was The King of automobile tech. The Touareg is included in this elite class because the SUV was ridiculously well-equipped and offered real off-road chops thanks to locking differentials, tons of ground clearance and short overhangs. Add a stick shift to the equation and you’ve got a true enthusiast’s SUV. One that I want badly.

Every now and then, I realise that this world is filled with amazing manual-transmission automobiles that don’t get nearly enough credit in the enthusiast community. Take my diesel manual Chrysler Voyager, for example. Would I ever buy an automatic, gasoline Voyager? No way in hell. Most

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