Volkswagen Touran long-term test: report 3

We already know that the Touran is a practical choice, but does this MPV still impress when you live with it every day?...

LT Volkswagen Touran with child in child seat

The car Volkswagen Touran R-Line 1.5 TSI EVO 150 DSG Run by Will Williams, senior photographer 

Why it’s here The Touran is a practical MPV, but can it also show other talents for a young family on the move?

Needs to be comfortable and efficient, function as a mobile office and have plenty of space for camera kit and passengers

Mileage 1840 List price £34,210 Target Price £28,385 Price as tested £36,330 Official Economy 41.7mpg Test Economy 40.4mpg

12 June 2021 – Family holiday

After months stuck at home shielding, I was suffering from severely itchy feet. Hell, I think the most exotic place I visited before being double vaccinated was the local tip, folding down two of my Volkswagen Touran’s second-row seats so I could load it up with cardboard packing boxes and outgrown toys, all destined for the recycling plant.

At the first sniff of travel being permitted again, my wife Carla and I were virtually sprinting to the car. Our first trip: to visit my mum (part of our support bubble, obviously) who lives in my native South Devon.

LT Volkswagen Touran with mountain bike in boot

My big concern was whether the Touran could take all our luggage; I reckon we had enough stuff for a six-month visit, even though we were going for, er, a week.

With spring in full swing, and good weather forecast, I was even keen to try and shoehorn in my full-suspension mountain bike. And sure enough it fit, along with a large Camelbak and various other cycling bits and pieces, plus all manner of travel cots and toddler-related placating tools to keep our son Callum happy.

As a bonus, thanks to the numerous storage cubbies on board, the Touran coped admirably with all those smaller things that are ultra-necessary on a long road trip: multiple drinks bottles, charging cables, snacks and toys (to avoid toddler boredom). Plus, there were some things for Carla and Callum, too.

Despite being so heavily loaded, the Touran’s 1.5-litre petrol engine coped well enough with the rolling South Devon hills, even if it does make its presence known when you extend it, sounding a bit harsh.

LT Volkswagen Touran panoramic sunroof

Aside from this, though, the drive was pretty relaxing, with minimal wind noise and comfortable seats helping to keep us chilled. Callum had a great view out thanks to the low window line, and with the panoramic sunroof wide open filling our lungs with fresh Devonshire air, he was happy to amuse himself for most of the journey.

Finally, the engine is able to deactivate two of its four cylinders to save fuel when you’re asking less of it, and the car’s DSG automatic gearbox features a clever coasting mode whereby it disconnects itself to let the engine idle and further boost efficiency. As a result we managed just over 40mpg on the way to my mum’s, which is pretty impressive for a heavily-laden petrol MPV.

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