Volkswagen’s SUV line-up will get a make-over this year, while the Polo is due for some minor surgery and the first petrol Amarok is on its way.

During the recent Volkswagen Indaba, held at their Kariega facility in the Eastern Cape, Volkswagen Group Africa (formerly VWSA) gave us a glimpse of their long-term planning. But things are afoot in the near future as well, with a brace of model improvements, facelifts, and new vehicles set to arrive on local shores this year. Here’s the rundown of all the upcoming highlights due in 2024.

No changes barring possible special editions are planned for the VW Polo Vivo in 2024.

The Polo Vivo and T-Roc remain as they are, and VW is keeping quiet about any possible updates to the Golf, but the Polo will get some range additions and minor improvements in this year’s first half. The other SUVs will be rejuvenated in the second half of 2024, and the petrol Amarok will arrive about halfway through the year.

Related: For stylish motoring on a budget, these new and used Polo Vivos on CHANGECARS have you covered.

The VW Polo hatch is now built in SA for both LHD and RHD markets, and is the only factory to produce the GTI variant as well.

Polo updates

While the current VW Polo is already well into the second half of its lifespan, the plan is to keep this popular model (and SA’s leading automotive export) going until at least 2029. With assembly for European markets in Spain already winding down, South Africa will henceforth become the sole Polo hatchback supplier for both LHD and RHD markets outside China and Latin America.

With this in mind, a continuous development process will see some minor changes appear in hatchback variants for 2024. There will be a new steering wheel and redesigned seats, and some small cosmetic improvements inside and out.

The VW Polo sedan range will expand in 2024 with a new 1.0-litre turbo engine and a high-trim derivative added to the range.

The Indian-built Polo sedan gets more intensive attention, however, because the 1.0-litre 3-cylinder turbo petrol engine will become available in mid- and high-end variants. In this application, it will be tuned to produce 85 kW and 200 Nm, and will be mated exclusively to a 6-speed automatic transmission.

This engine will also premiere a new “Style” range-topping trim level, with more driver assistance tech and extra creature comforts added to the spec sheet. All Polo sedans will also drop the much-criticised beige lower cabin trim in favour of a more practical dark grey/black hue.

Related: Looking for a new or used VW Polo? Look no further than CHANGECARS!

Petrol power is coming to the Amarok in 2024, thanks to Ford's 2.3-litre EcoBoost engine.

High-power Amarok

Volkswagen is poised to offer the new Amarok with petrol power for the first time, but it’s not one of their own EA888 engines. Instead, the Ford Mustang’s 2.3-litre EcoBoost turbo 4-cylinder will serve under the bonnet, delivering a handy 222 kW and about 420 Nm of torque.

More details about this addition will be revealed in due course, but it’s safe to predict that 4WD (or even full-time AWD) will be inserted behind the 10-speed automatic gearbox. But, if VW is prepared to go this far to develop a high-performance Amarok, maybe a VW-branded version of the Ranger Raptor could not be too far behind? We live in hope!

Related: Shop for a new or used VW Amarok from these examples on CHANGECARS.

New bumpers, grille and lights distinguish the updated VW T-Cross, but the biggest improvements are inside the cabin.

T-Cross revisions

VW’s smallest current SUV gets a mild makeover, but the changes are significant because they address some perceived shortcomings with the outgoing model. Cosmetic alterations to the exterior revolve around new bumpers, wheels, grille and light clusters, but the metal pieces remain largely unchanged.

It’s inside the T-Cross where this facelift will be very noticeable, because the current model’s hard plastic surfaces will be replaced by soft-touch materials. The dashboard also comes in for a redesign, with a larger, free-standing central touchscreen and a fully-digital instrument cluster appearing across the range.

The major tech addition is the adaptive “IQ.LIGHT” Matrix LED headlights, which will likely be an optional extra in most trim levels, but even the normal LED headlights becoming standard equipment will be a welcome improvement over the current model’s halogen units.

Related: Because the T-Cross is VW’s most popular imported model, CHANGECARS has a great selection of new and used examples.

The Touareg SUV will receive its update midway through the year, with this new front end, 3-D LED tail lights, and aggressive bumpers.

Touareg revisions

As with the T-Cross, the refreshed Touareg will benefit from cosmetic- and interior improvements, even if the basic car underneath is unchanged. There are new LED light clusters with cool 3-D design elements on both ends, with IQ.LIGHT Matrix LEDs as standard in front. The bumpers are also reshaped, and there are light bars running across both the new grille and tailgate to meet illuminated VW badges in the middle.

Drivers will appreciate the new dashboard design which integrates the digital instrument cluster and and infotainment screen into one sweeping expanse. All occupants will also enjoy a heightened impression of luxury and convenience, thanks to improved cabin material quality and high-power (45W) USB-C charging ports.

Related: Get your luxury SUV fix in a new or used VW Touareg from CHANGECARS.

While it uses a version of its predecessor's platform, the 2024 VW Tiguan is all new inside and out.

New Tiguan

This is arguably the most significant new arrival, because the Tiguan plays in an extremely competitive market segment. While it uses an evolved version of its predecessor’s MQB platform and has an identical wheelbase to before, the new Tiguan has been completely redesigned for its third generation and is larger in every other dimension.

But, while it shares its aggressive appearance with the revised Touareg and has similarly flared wheel arches and sharp creases, the new Tiguan is significantly more slippery than before. Its drag coefficient drops from 0.33 to 0.28, which should bode well for both performance and fuel efficiency.

A strong horisontal design emphasis and pronounced fender flares lend the 2024 VW Tiguan a muscular stance.

The new Tiguan will also bring features not normally seen in this class, such as an optional head-up display and massaging seats, while its infotainment display and digital instrument cluster will offer the latest connectivity features and customisable driver displays.

Related: The outgoing VW Tiguan is still a great car, so find the one for you in this beautiful selection on CHANGECARS.

The VW ID.4 is not for sale to the public yet, but it will become available if the initial test fleet performs as required.

ID.4 EV arrives, but it’s not for sale yet

Volkswagen is committed to the EV changeover, and the ID.4 was the first of their all-electric models to reach the market. Built on the MEB skateboard-type EV platform, the ID.4 is the first rear-engined, RWD VW in decades, and is a crossover designed to accommodate the EV architecture underneath without compromising cabin space.

This model is not up for local sale just yet, but the ID.4 will be inserted into VW’s test fleet to enable some real-world evaluation on local soil. The battery pack has a storage capacity of 77 kWh to give a claimed driving range of up to 520 km, while the 150 kW electric motor should be good for a 0 -100 km/h sprint in about 8.5 seconds.

It will be interesting to see if that driving range will be attainable in South Africa, though, due to our unique combination of long distances between major metros, generally high cruising speeds, and harsh climate. These factors all conspire to drain EV batteries much quicker than claimed, and encountering them all at once could easily inspire range anxiety. This is likely why VW decided to run a test fleet first before releasing the ID.4 in South Africa.

Martin Pretorius


Shop for the new or used Volkswagen of your dreams from this awesome selection on CHANGECARS!