A street-legal concept version of Volkswagen's Dakar Rally Touareg could make it into limited production, company officials have revealed to Autocar at the Qatar motor show.
The Race Touareg 3 Qatar show car is only lightly modified from the Race Touareg 3 rally car that won the Dakar Rally earlier this month. Power for what VW calls “the world's most talented street-legal SUV” comes from a modified 306hp 2.5-liter five-cylinder turbo-diesel version of the engine used in the Dakar rally.
The most obvious change to the 79in. wide SUV is the 18-in. BBS alloys with road tires instead of the Dakar car's 16s. It is finished in "Magic Morning" white with gold trim and sports many of the Dakar car's most striking features, including its large roof air intake, jacked-up ride height and large fixed spoiler.
It uses the same chassis and bodywork as the Dakar car, which is homologated for road use allowing for a production run of road cars when VW gives the project the go-ahead. The bodywork is made from carbon composites and has been given a smooth finish to give it the impression it has been painted.
The real changes occur in the aircraft-inspired "stealth look" interior; the only thing remaining unmodified inside is the safety cage. It is equipped with Recaro bucket seats and engraved aluminum on the center console to commemorate the Race Touareg's Dakar victories. The leather-upholstered interior also features matte carbon trim.
The Race Touareg 3 Qatar is not the only SUV concept Volkswagen has brought today to Doha. Its other exhibit is the Touareg Gold Edition, a design study where many of its parts have been upgraded with 24-carat gold.
Gold is used for the custom designed 22-in. alloys, roof rails, protective guard strips, window frames, mirror caps, parts of the air intake frame and boot sill trim. It is painted in the same color as the Dakar road car concept.
The interior also gets lashings of 24-carat gold, where it is used for many of the switches and accents. The interior features a "Luna" trim color, which is used for the leather seats and Alcantara headlining. The dashboard is trimmed in natural brown leather.