THE one-tonne ute wars has been a busy battleground these past 12 months, and now it's Volkswagen's turn to up the stakes with a 3.0-litre V6 turbodiesel powerplant for its Amarok.
When it arrives it will be the only six-cylinder in the segment with the majority - including the class leading Toyota HiLux - utilising four-cylinders, and the popular Ford Ranger and Mazda BT-50s employing five-potters.
Europe will receive the new V6 Amaroks as early as September this year, so we can expect to see the variants in Australia's line-up soon after, although there has been no confirmation of the date, full specification or pricing.
We do know this latest generation of VW 3.0-litre V6 engines will offer up to 165kW and a mighty 550Nm of torque from just 1500rpm. That's is an increase in twist of 130Nm over the current 2.0-litre four-cylinder range-topping Amarok TDI420. VW says when mated to the ute's eight-speed auto gearbox the combined diesel consumption is 7.6-litres/100km. This highest powered engine will be offered from the outset, while two other output levels - 120kW and 150kW - will follow.
As previously mentioned, the V6 Amarok's full Australian specification is unknown, but European models receive a Servotronic steering system, 17-inch front brake discs and automatic post-collision braking system as standard.
The new pictures released, showing Europe's Amarok Aventura, reveal a mild facelift while inside VW says there's an all-new dashboard and new ergonomic seats. Said Aventura looks to have the high spec many double-cab ute buyers desire in Australia, with 20-inch alloys, rear-view camera, bi-xenon headlights and LED daytime running lights. VW also says some variants of the new Amarok will boast a towing capacity of up to 3500kg.
The current Amarok dual cab ute with 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine starts from $32,990. It is unknown if the four-cylinder engines will be retained alongside the new V6s or whether they'll be dropped to make way for the bigger units.