Volkswagen Amarok (2011–)

What's good

Refinement is impressive and so is interior quality making this one of the most car-like pick-ups on the market and a class above the likes of the Mitsubishi L200.

TDI engines are now common rail so still have plenty of punch but are far quieter and smoother than most commercial vehicle diesel engines.

Tuning specialists Revo offer an upgrade for the 2.0 BiTDI 163PS engine which boosts powerby 48PS and torque by 73Nm. It also deletes the speed limiter.

ESP is standard on all models and the Amarok has a four star Euro NCAP rating.

V6 TDI is quiet, yet offers immense torque and the AWD system is outstandingly sophisticated, especially the hill descent braking that holds the car to whatever speed you accelerate to.

What's bad

If you choose the comfort suspension as a company car it cannot take 1 tonne and HMRC classes it as a car, not a commercial vehicle so BIK is on car rates, not the standard LCV rate.

Amarok V6 weighs more than 2,040kg kerb weight so is restricted to 50mph on two lane roads and 60mph on dual carriageways (can do 70mph on Motorways). Older Amarocks that weigh less than 2,040kg ketb weight are not resticted so can do 60mph on two lane roadsd and 70mph on dual carriageways.

Following worldwide recall of 2.6 million vehicles due to crystalline deposits in the synthetic oil in 7-speed DSGs affecting the Mechatronics units causing the fuses to blow, Volkswagen is recalling 30,000 UK market vans and LCVs fitted with 7-speed DSG to change the oil in them from synthetic to mineral.

Recall over fuel leaks in the engine compartments of Amarok 2.0 TDI.

23-9-2017: Explanation for the high rate of failure of failure of 2.0 180 BiTDI engine in Amarok. "Oil light came on at end of lease. No leaks, so the engine must be burning the oil. Owner had an oil sample tested by Millers Oils and this showed the oil to have critical amounts of Al and Fe. The Al came from the corroding EGR cooler, the Fe is the cylinder bores being worn by the Al particles that have got into the engine. In short a new engine and ancillaries is required at a cost of £8,000. There is a Facebook page with over 1,000 Members devoted to the failings of the 180 BiTDI engine - it is only this engine that suffers. One chap in Norway runs a fleet of 30 ambulances and every one has needed a new engine. The EGR cooler is poorly designed - hot air condenses on unprotected aluminium, causing it to corrode. Volkswagen has brought out a revised cooler but it is too early to say if it is successful. And once an engine starts to burn oil through worn cylinder bores, the damage has been done." 

15-9-2018: Report of failure of transmission of 2014 Amarok at 70,000 miles. Owner reports "After the first year the car had constant grinding noise and electrical problems (windows not working etc). I took the car back to the dealership and another Volkswagen garage 3 times. Each time they had the car for a few hours and could never find a fault. At the end of July his year on one of the hottest days of the year my car had catastrophic gearbox failure. Volkswagen has had the car for 7 weeks and has been trying to determine the problem (Green Flag man told me instantly it was gearbox). After 7 weeks VW has confirmed it needs a new gearbox and I have had to pay over £6000 to fix this. I desperately need my car back as it is my work truck. I am a builder and not having it has seriously hampered my business. The garage it is at says it is totally ridiculous for the gearbox to fail on a car not even 4 years old (less than 70,000 miles). I have been speaking with customer services and emailing Germany but they will not look into the previous issues and have just told me to contact the ombudsmen which i will do. They are not sympathetic or helpful in any way."

21-12-2018: Report of 8-speed automatic transmission failure on 2015 Amarok 2.0TDI at 15,000 miles. Volkswagen Customer Care paid 65% of replacement cost. Nothing from supplying dealer.

20-3-2019: Report of DPF continually getting blocked on leased 2017 Amarok, severely constraining performance. First reported January 2018. AA treated several times and taken to the Dealer October 2018. They advised a repair and applied unsuccessfully to the lessor for work under warranty.The vehicle has since continued to suffer as the lessor refuses to budge with VW despite the lease obligation.

24-9-2019: Report of vibration from 2015 VW Amarok Highline 4Motion DC 8-speed auto at 58,000 miles. 6 months after warranty expired, vibration developed that can be felt on the steering wheel. Dealer diagnosed a faulty power steering pump and VW contributed 75%. That proved a wrong diagnosis. Dealer replaced the propshaft (FoC), tried new wheels and tyres and finally, new half shafts. The problem persists and the dealer has now said they do not know what is wrong with the vehicle. They have suggested possibly either the dual mass flywheel or internal engine imbalance and to investigate have indicated £800 in labour. 

What does a Volkswagen Amarok (2011) cost?