Hey, Volkswagen, Why Don’t You Put This Into Production?

VW shows off an Audi-esque go anywhere adventure sedan—but at this stage it’s only a concept.

It’s just a one-off concept car, but still, it’s worth mulling the Volkswagen Alltrack Country, which the brand has just revealed.

First, a little context. The standard-issue Volkswagen Golf Alltrack on which it’s based is a real wagon you can buy now; it’s bigger inside than the Impreza Crosstrek, smaller than a Subura Outback, and feels and drives in a decidedly more premium fashion than either. It’s a slightly lifted, slightly beefed version of the Golf SportWagen and it starts at $25,850.

For that you get 0.6 inches more ground clearance (raising the Alltrack to 6.9 inches), metal cladding protecting the edges of the vehicle, and light underbody protection to key components, such as the oil pan. All-wheel-drive is standard, which you can also get on the SportWagen, but on the Alltrack there’s also an off-road mode to the DSG transmission that allows more wheelspin and automates hill-descent control at slow speeds. The throttle tip-in is a little bit softer, too, so you can better modulate the wagon’s pace in slow-speed maneuvers on loose grit.

With this rig, VW’s lifted the Alltrack Country Concept an additional two inches, which at nine inches now puts its ground clearance on par with the likes of the aforementioned Outback. Which reminds that the Volkswagen family has been here before. There was a time, the early 2000s to be specific, that the original Audi Allroad (not the current one) had a full eight inches of ground clearance on a cool (though finicky) air suspension. And if you want to get in the wayback machine to the 1980s, the Golf Country was lifted to have an almost goofy looking 8.2 inches of ground clearance and it was fitted with Syncro AWD—just like that Westfalia Vanagon you heart on Instagram. And in tribute to those old Golfs, Volkswagen’s downsized the wheels to 15-inchers vs. the stock 17s, and added nicely meaty BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 rubber.

Naturally, because this is a concept, it gets a second set of fogs below the stock ones, a roof-wide LED light bar mounted to the leading edge of the front Thule Aeroblade crossbar, and a Bigfoot Hardshell pop-up tent. Further styling includes a hitch-mounted Thule T2 Pro XT bike rack carrying a pair of Trek Staches. On top of the Bigfoot Volkswagen added a solar panel, naturally, to heat water for a solar shower. Juice from the solar panel can also power batteries hidden under the trunk floor—amperage you’ll need to run the media center and USB power ports integrated into the hatch floor.

While some of this is clearly more bling and less functional, we do love the topo-themed custom wrap job and the added ground clearance alone makes tiny wheels in your heads turn a wee bit faster. And you don’t need VW’s help to make this sort of Alltrack feasible. Aftermarket, anyone?


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Showing 10 comments
  • Nick

    Man, after reading the recent NYT article detailing VW’s brazen emissions cheat device (even recalling vehicles to update the software to make the cheat device even harder to detect), I would be hard-pressed to buy a VW ever.

  • yaz

    Not needed. Subaru is already doing it big with the Outback

  • Patrick

    Promoting the brand and/or giving VW your money, after the criminal environmental fraud they just pulled, demonstrates an appalling lack of spine. Grow some moral principles/ethics/values. Yeah, you too, AJ.

  • Maurice W

    I was pretty excited about the Alltrack…until it got here without a cloth seat option 🙂

  • DK

    Turning in my TDI next week, not looking back, ever. Not only was the cheating unforgivable, the process for submitting a claim and turning the car in was horrendous. VW has the ability to make a nice car but the ethics of a gang of con artists.

  • Matt

    Biggest issue I have with the sportwagen is the power. I want the 2.0T and/or the TDi as an option (could care less about the emission scandal). The 1.8T is gutless. Otherwise you’re spot on….VW build this with the correct engine!

  • Steven

    Throw in the new diesel and this thing would work. As a 3rd Gen Outback owner and a two-person household, I like the smaller size of the VW (compared to the current Outback). The VW just needs more clearance and capability.

    Also, the Passat Alltrack would be nice, especially for a family.

  • Matt

    Agree with everyone else. VW is dead to me. Buy a Subaru for the adventure wagon.

  • Wake up

    It’s fine if you want a Subaru and while it’s not okay that VW cheated, people need to see the BIG picture. VW had the balls and $$$ to offer a reliable, fun to drive car that easily got over 40mpg, 50mpg in certain terrain.

    Did it pollute more than it was supposed to? Yep, but in reality it’s small 2.0 four cylinder, not a eight cylinder, coal-rolling monster. It’s simply too small to be the environmental demon people think. Combine that with the fact that VW diesels got such good MPG (requiring less oil extraction and production), were well built (many had 100k miles), were relatively light (less wear on infastructure), and the cumulative damage is even less.

    Every diesel vehicle sold in the US probably has skirted emission rules, but being after VW the news is quiet.

    Harley Davidson cheated on emissions for years, and got slapped with a giant fine but no one cries about them.

    Big picture, folks. I know it’s hard to see.

  • Duff

    Agree completely with wake up. Get off your high “VW cheated, they’re bad” horse. Vehicle NOx emissions are set arbitrarily low when compared to the Europeans, all in order to kill small Diesel engine tech. It has nothing to do with the environment. Highly efficient small Diesel engines emit a microscopic fraction of the unregulated coal rollers of heavy duty pickups and forget about tractor trailers, school busses, mass transit busses. Even Chrysler got caught cheating with their ecodiesel engine… but less news was made of that. Please take an intelligent approach to consumerism and do a bit more research than listening to media sound bytes.

    VW is a great company and makes and in my opinion make great vehicles. I’ve owned the Alltrack for a year and love it. The 1.8 is very lively, especially in sport mode with the fantastic DSG, something the Subaru rubber band cvt can’t come close to providing.

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