Volkswagen Introduces Tarok Compact Pickup Concept
Small Truck Destined for Production in Brazilian Market
Volkswagen introduced its newest pickup concept, the compact Tarok, at the 2018 Sao Paolo International Motor Show. VW promises that a production version of the Tarok will soon arrive on the Brazilian scene with barely any changes from the concept.
One key feature retained for production will be the Tarok’s urban-friendly size. Measuring in at about 5 meters (or 196 inches, give or take), the Tarok is more than a foot shorter than even the smallest Chevrolet Colorado pickup and about 10 inches shorter than the current Nissan Frontier. It's also nearly 20 inches shorter than the Atlas-based Tanoak concept, as well as quite a bit narrower and lower.
Those trim dimensions may take their toll on cargo space, but the Tarok compensates with a bed-extending tailgate and a novel fold-down panel in the rear bulkhead. However, unlike a similar feature on the bygone Chevrolet Avalanche, this folding panel leaves the rear glass in place, opening only at the bottom. Still, the added space should provide Tarok owners with a sizable place in which to load lumber for household projects, surfboards for the weekend, and other lengthy cargo.
The Tarok’s size and reported 1.4L turbocharged I-4 engine lead us to believe it’s likely based on one of Volkswagen’s existing compact cars, perhaps the Golf or overseas-only T-Cross small sport-ute. Volkswagen says it is equipped with a six-speed automatic, routing 148 hp to standard 4MOTION all-wheel drive. The company promises a 2,000-plus–pound payload capacity, presumably using overseas rating standards. There will also be a turbodiesel option: a 2.0L unit with at least 148 hp.
The company says the Tarok concept not only has legs in Brazil, but it has potential to boost the company’s presence in other markets as well. We doubt the U.S. will be one of those future markets, but it’s possible VW could market the quirky little pickup to provide folks with a truly compact alternative to ever-enlarging midsize trucks.