OK, so now I’m pissed. After noticing that VW decided to get rid of their real 4WD transmission on their Touareg, I’m trying to avoid being forced back to a Ford F-250 which is big ugly and the wife HATES it!
My problem is that I routinely use the truck to get up to remote trailheads where I go mountain biking and also to drive down miles of beach fully loaded w/ three people, coolers, bbq, canopy and beach seats.
I drive a 2004 Touareg which was the ONLY small SUV that gave the the locking differentials I need to make it on the beach and up to the trailheads. I intend to replace it in 2014 (mainly because of my fear of the sealed transmission causing me a $10,000 headache when I least expect it)… and I was going to replace it with another Touareg… but now that’s out… I refuse to get stranded on the beach w/ 2 wheels spinning because of that stupid AWD transmission they put in the 2011 model. That one mod threw out the whole reason to own a Touareg!
So, now I’m trying to figure out what other options I have when I’m looking at the 2014 models. I need a mid-size SUV that seats 5, has a similar cargo capacity to the Touareg and has the real 4WD transmission and the interior appointments that the Touareg has. The Ford F-250 is just a pig and is too big to park. Ditto for the Suburban 4WD. Also the Tahoe and Sierra, while they do come w/ real 4WD optional transmissions, have a terrible interior and layout. I’ll swallow it but only as a last resort.
What other options do I now have? I need to keep the sticker price south of 60K… which pretty much rules out the Cayenne and the Mercedes G-series. I don’t know… does the BMW X5 come with a similar heavy duty real 4WD transmission? I know the Land Rover Sport does, but can I actually get one for under 60K with that transmission? Are there any models out there from other mfg’s that I’m not considering?