Road Test: Vw Touareg

The worst thing about Volkswagen's new SUV is its name: Touareg (rhymes with "do-rag"). The company says it named its first SUV after a tribe of sub-Saharan nomads. Whatever. Once you climb inside this refined SUV, however, all is forgiven. On the highway, a nifty air suspension (a $2,300 option) lowers the Touareg for streamlining, or you can flip a switch and ride high for off-road. Though surprisingly surefooted, it lacks human-cargo capacity: there's no third row, and my kids gave the second row's middle seat a thumbs down. But the Touareg makes up for the tight interior with extra style--plenty of burled walnut, brushed aluminum and leather. That's why it's destined to become the hipster's SUV. Too bad about the name.

Tip: To haul assets in this hefty Vee-Dub, opt for the burly V-8.