- Volkswagen announced plans on Monday to show off its Tarok pickup-truck concept at the 2019 New York International Auto Show.
- The Tarok is designed to allow VW to gauge US consumer interest in an entry-level compact pickup truck.
- There are no compact pickups available for sale in the US, with the Ford Ranger, the Toyota Tacoma, GM’s Colorado and Canyon, and the Nissan Frontier are all considered midsize trucks.
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Volkswagen announced plans on Monday to show off its Tarok pickup-truck concept at the 2019 New York International Auto Show.
VW’s decision to show off the Tarok to US consumers is the latest signal that the German automaker is seriously considering an entry into the US pickup-truck market.
“Although there are no plans to produce the vehicle for the U.S. market, the Tarok concept is being shown to gauge market reaction for a truly versatile and compact entry-level pickup,” VW said in a statement.
The US pickup-truck market is booming, with the three best-selling vehicles in the US all full-size trucks. The midsize truck market has also been resurgent with a recently revamped Toyota Tacoma and a newly introduced Ford Ranger.
However, there are no compact trucks available for sale in the US, meaning the Tarok could have an entire segment to itself.
This isn’t the first time in recent memory that VW has dipped its toes into the US truck market. Last year, the company unveiled a concept for a four-door midsize pickup truck in New York called the Atlas Tanoak.
The Tarok was originally unveiled last year at the Sao Paulo International Motor Show in Brazil. According to VW, a production version of the Tarok is set to go on sale in South America “in the near future.”
The compact-pickup concept that will be on display in New York is built on VW’s MQB platform that also underpins the Tiguan and Atlas SUVs and the Passat and Jetta sedans.
Power for the Tarok comes from a 147 horsepower 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which is shared with the US market Jetta. It’s likely a US production Tarok will come with a beefier powerplant.
The 147 horsepower engine sends power to a permanent multimode all-wheel-drive system through a six-speed automatic transmission.
According to VW, the Tarok has 9.6 inches of ground clearance and boasts a maximum payload of 2,271 pounds. The company did not disclose how much it could tow.
The four-door concept is 193.5 inches long with a 47.5-inch-long cargo bed. The bed is extended by 27.4 inches when the tailgate is open.
Inside, the Tarok comes with a relatively standard VW-group interior, complete with the company’s Digital Cockpit instrument cluster and a 9.2-inch infotainment screen.
The 2019 New York International Auto Show will be open to the public from April 19 to April 28 at the Javits Center.