Local arm announces preliminary specifications for new entry-level V6 ute, with sub-$50,000 price suggested.

Volkswagen Australia has provided initial specification information for its new entry-level Amarok V6 – the TDI550 Core,

The new variant shares its 165kW/550Nm 3.0-litre turbo diesel V6 with Sportline and Highline models, but pares back equipment for a more attractive starting price.

Volkswagen is yet to confirm just how low that price will be, but suggests a sub-$50,000 figure should be achievable, which creates a reasonable point of difference compared to the $55,990 V6 Sportline, the current price-leader in the Amarok V6 line-up. It also takes a shot at less powerful mid- to high-end versions of 4x4 competitors like the Toyota HiLux, Ford Ranger, and Mitsubishi Triton.

The V6 Core retains a dual-cab layout, equipped with the same 4Motion constant 4x4 system and 8-speed ZF automatic transmission fitted to other Amarok V6 models. As with the rest of the rest of the range (more powerful V6 Ultimate 580 excluded) peak engine output can rise to 180kW for up to 10 seconds on overboost.

The new Core takes work-focussed utility up a notch with a harder-wearing ‘Austin’ fabric trim for the seats and a rubber floor designed to appeal to serious off-road users. Alloy wheels downsize to 17-inchers, shod in 245/65 R17 tyres.

“In many ways, the V6 Amarok is the new muscle car, and what we’re currently seeing is that many of our customers are buying the Amarok for its on-road abilities and refinement,” Nicholas Reid, marketing manager for Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Australia said.

“While the Core V6 will do that too and more, the Core’s specification is targeted to our heartland off-road driver.”

Despite the off-road focus the Amarok V6 Core won’t come with a low range transfer case, but will instead retain the constant single-range 4x4 system seen on other members of the V6 Amarok range, including an off road mode to alter ABS, stability control, transmission and hill descent control parameters in harsh terrain.

Other equipment highlights include halogen headlights and daytime-running lights, front fog-lights, a black painted rear step bar, cruise control, single-zone climate control, and a leather-trimmed multi-function steering wheel.

Front seats retain manual height adjustment and height-adjustable seat belts, while infotainment keeps its 6.3-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality. A rear-view camera and rear parks sensors are also included, but front sensors remain the preserve of Sportline trim.

The new addition to the range is expected to lead to V6 models accounting got an 80 per cent share of Amarok sales, up from the 70 per cent currently. There are no plans to change the entry-level four-cylinder range, and its attractive pricing to fleets, an area the V6 wouldn't be able to match.

Stock of the Amarok V6 Core is set to arrive late in October 2018, with pricing and additional specifications to be announced closer to launch.

Note: Four-cylinder Core Plus shown, expect a similar visual package for the V6 Core, with black mirrors and door handles minus the sports bar.