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Old 02-21-2012   #1
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Touareg vs Cayenne

Seems a number of members own both Touaregs and Cayennes.

I'd appreciate some input on why one versus the other...

Some background:

I'm currently driving a '99 A6 wagon with 200K miles on it. Nicely modified -- sport interior, suspension, 996 brakes, RNS-E nav. The car is in great shape and I love it...but it's getting a bit long in the tooth and I'm getting the itch for something new(er). I've owned other Audis and a couple of Range Rovers.

It's my daily driver in the winter. I have a modified '01 A4 wagon that sees some autocross and track time, also is my summer DD. At some point, after the second child is out of college (she's a freshman now), that may be replaced by a 996 or Cayman.

I'm looking for a replacement vehicle that is at least as large as the A6. I'd like better fuel economy, but that's a negotiable item.

I drove an '08 Toureg TDI this week. Immaculate car. Steel suspension. I didn't like it. Sitting in it, it just didn't feel like a driver's car. Suspension was just okay. Motor pulled nicely.

This was a white car with a light interior and I do react strongly to interior colors. Both my Audis have black leather interiors.

I need to drive my buddy's '04 V8 with air to see how his handles. He's pretty happy with it.

My other options, so far, seem to be an '08 or thereabouts Cayenne V6 or V8. Seems the V8 doesn't give up much fuel economy to the six. Also in the mix are the Audi Q5 and an '08 or '09 A6 wagon...or even maybe a late model A4 wagon.

Sportiness is important...

This car will take over daily driver duties. A mix of short and longer road trips (3-4 hours) with 1-4 people in the car. We just drove the A6 to Florida and back over the holidays...but that may happen only infrequently.

I don't currently have anything to tow, but that other car may turn into a bit of a track rat...and I've been thinking about a small sailboat for a long time...

Offroading capability is a plus, which is why I'm looking at the T2 Toureg. My Rovers got muddy occasionally. Not sure this new vehicle ever will, but it's a nice option to have.

All of these run in the $25-$40K price range, and doing something this tax year will save a bundle on the Touareg or Cayenne purchase (due to accelerated depreciation). The law, by the way, is changing at the end of this year. Q5 and the car purchases have less of a tax benefit.

I'd appreciate input from folks that have gone through similar evaluations, and in particular, commentary on the Touareg/Cayenne trade-offs.

Sorry for the ramble...again, thoughts appreciated.

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Old 02-21-2012   #2
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Are you referring to the Section 179 tax deduction? Is it ending 2012?

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Old 02-21-2012   #3
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Are you referring to the Section 179 tax deduction? Is it ending 2012?
Yes, it's the Sec 179 Expense. I believe that the total that can be expensed will drop to $25K in 2013, down from $139K in 2011 and $500K in 2010. Also, there's a 50% bonus depreciation in 2012 that goes away completely.

On a $40K vehicle with greater than 6,000 GVW, the tax benefit for someone in the top income tax bracket is $14K. That reduces the cost of the vehicle, if bought in 2012, to $26K.

Hope my wife understands why I *need* to buy a truck this year.
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Old 02-21-2012   #4
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Having owned both, I can say with great authority: neither are "driver's cars". They are heavy, well appointed SUVs with outstanding capabilities. Now as to the ever elusive "feel", the Cayenne wins out - less understeer than the Touareg, along with higher rate suspension components give better on road handling. You should drive both...
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Old 02-21-2012   #5
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This is what I noticed when I was debating the Touareg vs Cayenne. I really didn't feel that much of a difference between the V8 touareg or cayenne. The Cayenne has around 30 HP more depending on the years you are comparing but I was comparing both 06 models. I would not buy a steel suspension on either vehicle, I drove the Touareg with air ride in sport mode and also a Cayenne Turbo in sport mode. You can tell a difference between those two, however you will be looking a long time for a Cayenne S with the air ride option as they are few and far between. So if you compare a Stock Cayenne S with steel suspension VS Touareg with Air ride in sport mode, they are very similar as far as feeling. I also am a big seat person, I have had Recaro's on all of my cars and that is where the Cayenne stands out in some regards. The Stock touareg seats in the 04-07 are horrible, no bolstering thus they do not hold you very well in the corners, the Cayennes seats seem to hold slightly better but still not what I would call great. The Cayenne GTS however has a Great seat which can also be put into the Toaureg (If and thats a big IF you can find some used). Or The seats in the 08+ Touaregs or if you can find some R50/W12 seats from Germany are great! So Basically you can have the best of both worlds if you are willing to put in some time locating parts which by your list of cars, I think you are quite capable of it. Get a Touareg, With air ride, if it is a 04-07 get seats out of a 08-09 OR R50/W12 or Cayenne GTS, Get Swaybars from a Cayenne Turbo (I did this and it now handles better than a Cayenne S), Get a custom Tune from Customspooling, maybe add some 2nd cat deletes from fabspeed and maybe replace the suitcase muffler with fabspeed or magnaflow and you should have yourself a nice little toy which is great on and off road and still will handle great (For an SUV). It will be cheaper for insurance, repairs and extended warranty. This is just my 2cents.
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Old 02-21-2012   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lml999 View Post
I drove an '08 Toureg TDI this week. Immaculate car. Steel suspension. I didn't like it. Sitting in it, it just didn't feel like a driver's car. Suspension was just okay. Motor pulled nicely.
Are you sure on the year of the vehicle you test drove? I'm not aware of any '08 TDIs in the States with steel suspension. All the 2008's in the States were V10s, and those all came well optioned including the air suspension. The main reason I'm asking is, it doesn't sound like you drove a V10, and that could be right up your ally. But, as other's have posted. . .this thing is heavy, and it makes no apologies for that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lml999 View Post
This was a white car with a light interior and I do react strongly to interior colors. Both my Audis have black leather interiors.
I agree on interior colors, and in my opinion VW really missed the boat with their interior colors on the 2010 and older US Touaregs. Unfortunately, you can't get black. For me, the grey didn't work and the tan was too light. That left me with Sienna for my 2008. . .and I love it.
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Old 02-21-2012   #7
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Originally Posted by lml999 View Post
Yes, it's the Sec 179 Expense. I believe that the total that can be expensed will drop to $25K in 2013, down from $139K in 2011 and $500K in 2010. Also, there's a 50% bonus depreciation in 2012 that goes away completely.

On a $40K vehicle with greater than 6,000 GVW, the tax benefit for someone in the top income tax bracket is $14K. That reduces the cost of the vehicle, if bought in 2012, to $26K.

Hope my wife understands why I *need* to buy a truck this year.
I thought the accelerated and BONUS depreciation went away in 2011? At least that's what my accountant told me. I just went through all that and after driving all the other suv's that qualified, I ended up with the Treg. To me it was the 'sportiest' of the bunch. I didn't feel the Cayenne was worth the extra $$$ and the wife hated the interior anyway. I also preferred the diesel.

By the way, my other cars are Audi's as well, a stage 3 2000 S4, and a 2006 A4 avant as my commuter. We traded in an MDX.
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Old 02-21-2012   #8
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Lml999, what 08 TDI did you drive with steel suspension. If you are in NA the only 08 TDI was the V10 and they all had air. 09-10 TDI 3.0 V6's could be had either way, steel or air. I agree that the air is nice and would not have another one with out it. I will be waiting a long while though since the new gen T3's don't come with it at all here.
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Old 02-21-2012   #9
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Originally Posted by Mountain_Smith View Post
Are you sure on the year of the vehicle you test drove? I'm not aware of any '08 TDIs in the States with steel suspension.
Yes, sorry, it was a 2009. V6 TDI.

Lee
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Old 02-21-2012   #10
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The marginal differences between the Cayenne and the Treg are expressed in oodles of cash in parts and just finding someone to work on it assuming you don't. You're quite right, having owned two Porsches the Recaro seats are hard to beat (a fact I've mentioned several times). However, it's not a Panamera or 996, it's an SUV and at close to 3 tons you have to keep that in mind. To want to have a Ferrari dressed up as a 4x4 and be able to tow 7,000+ pounds is going to be hard to find.

Owning both a V6 steel and a V8 with air suspension (both 2008 ) I can swear by the air suspension. Driving several times (don't get me started) over 800 miles in a day you are not as tired as you would be with the steel suspension. Plus the V8 whilst not a beast is no snail either.

Given where I live, the diesels are totally out of the question, so I can't help you there but I would say that for extreme driving, with no dealer close (done with those), comfort, quiet, towing ability etc. it's a fantastic vehicle and I'm keeping mine till they die.

Now if someone can point me to a 71 Cuda 440 wedge (convertible) for a reasonable price, I'll sink my money in that because there's nothing else out there for 66 Degrees North.

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