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When Volkswagen’s Amarok launched in March 2011 the leisure of the ute market became put on note.
After years of producers telling us its utes had “automobile-like features” (they in fact didn’t), the Amarok finally lived up to the declare. The design changed into elegant, cabins weren’t far off a Golf hatchback for fine and comfort, ride proved fairly relaxed and it could actually go around corners with out leaning like the town drunk in a facet wind.
patrons haven’t flocked to the Argentine-built ute as they've the Toyota HiLux or Ford Ranger but VW has offered tens of lots here. There are hundreds of used examples within the classifieds and a lot of sing the model’s praises — so in case you believe a pre-loved Amarok?
The 2011-12 diesel types in some cases crucial engines rebuilt or replaced at massive cost as a result of failure of the serpentine (drive) belt. In isolation this failure isn’t too not easy however within the diesel it may well tangle with the timing belt, inflicting it to destroy or leap in order that valves hit pistons — and increase, the engine’s cactus.
The pressure belt become on occasion failing earlier than its 75,000km alternative suggestion, and the timing belt’s cover wasn’t constructive in stopping the snapped troublemaker. In might also 2012 Volkswagen outfitted a new timing belt defend to cure the issue.
a further black mark towards 2011-12 diesels is the emissions defeat equipment at the root of VW’s Dieselgate scandal. Amaroks have been the primary VWs recalled for a software fix and any of this vintage should had been remedied (later fashions didn’t have the cheat contraptions).
finances will play a big part in your option of Amarok. The most cost-effective can be these earliest types, which aren't handiest neatly out of warranty however additionally pressured via the above negatives.
twin-cab utes have been the primary sellers so for this evaluate we’ll exclude workhorse cab chassis and single cab. Petrol engines, fitted for a short while, are as rare as unicorns and extremely few are rear-pressure instead of AWD.
The range is titanic — some 30 grades over the years packed faster diesels of diverse torque outputs.
up to July 2012 you may buy simplest a 120kW TDI400 diesel with guide gearbox.
Then got here the 132kW TDI420 with appealing eight-pace auto gearbox. Rear-drivers used the less effective TDI340 diesels (or a TSI300 petrol).
Specification varies too — if the grade is readily Amarok, Core or Trendline, don’t expect too a great deal gadget, Highlines are customarily smartly-packed and Ultimates are good of the heap.
From launch, even the bottom spec had power home windows, aircon and far flung vital locking. Trendlines introduced body colored bumpers, alloy wheels, cruise control and carpet rather than rubber on the floor. Highlines had 18-inch alloys, chrome body trim and higher great cabins and Ultimates acquired leather, 19-inch alloys and side steps. Bluetooth arrived in July 2012.
a first amongst utes, all types had 5 ANCAP security stars. however Amaroks nonetheless lack aspect curtain airbags, which are standard on very nearly all competitors.
VW’s 4-wheel drive, dubbed 4Motion, endows good off-road ability. It’s selectable 4WD if there’s a pink “4” on the badge and if there’s a black “4” it’s permanent AWD; an digital differential lock is average to each.
assess whether consolation suspension springs had been optioned in preference to the average heavy-obligation set-up. For these riding particularly on the bitumen (most do), consolation suspension removed a leaf, making it a extra settled journey.
This also dropped payload by about 200kg — latitude-topping twin-cabs are down to 769kg, for instance.
Facelifted series II Amaroks landed in November 2016, shaking up the ute market another time with a V6 rapid diesel with 165kW/550Nm and later 190kW/580Nm.
These had been the prefer for outright efficiency, doing the 0-100kmh dash in and for heavy towing. at the start, the rating became 3000kg, the same because the four-cylinders, and from October 2017 this elevated to 3500kg.
The series IIs additionally brought the captivating smartphone mirroring and the rear digital camera image confirmed on the a color touchscreen.
showing how far utes have are available in fresh years, the flagship V6 top-quality 580 — with heated, power seats trimmed in Nappa leather-based — became $seventy one,990 earlier than on-roads. appropriate cashed-up tradie stuff.
What to search for
as with all utes, many had been used as city transport and lived a far more straightforward life than work, towing and tradition automobiles. target the metropolis slickers.
folks that have accomplished issues complicated — having circumnavigated Australia with 3000kg-plus in tow; coated in dents and bashes underneath, or with a lot of damage within the tray — may also nevertheless have a whole lot of existence left in them however expect to pay a long way much less.
The drama with the belts makes 2011 and a few 2012 Amaroks hard to suggest. make sure the timing belt cover has been upgraded and that belts are all in sound circumstance and were modified on time — every 60,000km is now the advice.
symptoms of a failing belt include squealing from the front end and failing vigor steerage or aircon.
be certain the engine temperature doesn’t creep up on check force, and seem to be under the oil filler cap for mayonnaise-classification gunk, indicating water in the oil from a cracked cylinder head. verify for coolant and radiator leaks, and for oil leaking from the engine, differential or transmission.
Some house owners say brake pads and rotors wear out without delay, so assess when these had been final changed.
There were occasional screw ups of the exhaust fuel recirculation, diesel particulate filter and turbochargers, that means massively high priced fixes and highlighting the importance of having a pre-buy inspection by means of an authority.
assess tail lamps for any water trapped in there. This may cause harm to the wiring loom and imply hefty expenses.
There were six recollects — for details, view For exhaustive guidance on issues and guidance, the forum at is a brilliant Australian-primarily based resource.
most reliable to steer clear of early versions and those with high kilometres as they’re no longer low-priced to preserve or repair. Cabins are classification-main and, for a ute, these VWs are wonderful on-highway and equipped on the rough stuff. Get one with comfort suspension geared up in case you’re an urbanite. A grunty V6 with last warranty is a fine all-circular choose however will be priced thus.
house owners say
Pete Toy: We’ve owned a 2011 guide for 5 years. In its favour, fuel economy and ease of riding are high-quality for a four wheel drive, i exploit it on the motorways all of the time. It feels solid at speed and round corners. There’s large rear area for our three kids, and the door cubicles are cavernous. On the down facet, I’ve needed to change the snatch, the passenger window malfunctions, probably the most plastic’s become brittle and the paint’s bubbled in one rear nook. Gears can be clunky and the brake pads wear early and go away a lot of brown muck on the wheels. I’m not sure I’d purchase another. It bothers me there are not any rear curtain airbags.
Col: I’ve received 230,000km on my 2013 Amarok, a pretty good ute bar a few issues, peculiarly the stupid sensors. I don’t comprehend why they need all that on a ute — not everyone lives in Toorak. The rate would curl your toes too. I’d be happier if it became easier to fix.
The knowledgeable says
To the end of closing 12 months, Volkswagen offered essentially fifty seven,000 Amaroks, peaking at well over 9000 annually. among the lots of in used listings, rear-wheel drives account for only a fraction and petrol models even fewer. there is an almost even divide between four and 6-cylinders.
The entry-degree TDI340 twin-cab rear-pressure from 2011 ($31,990 new) is still valued at $13,300. The latitude-topping TDI400 four wheel drive ($fifty eight,490 new) is $22,450 used.
For 2018, the base TDI420 rear-pressure ($39,990 new) is worth $36,500 and the TDI580 most advantageous 4 wheel drive V6 auto ($71,990 new) fetches $sixty four,250.
rivals consist of Toyota HiLux, Ford Ranger, Mitsubishi Triton and Nissan Navara. handiest the HiLux for 2011-18 retains value superior than the Amarok.
For 2011, the Amarok’s resale price is marginally ahead of the Triton and for final yr it is terribly close to the HiLux.