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The new 2023 Volkswagen Amarok dual-cab ute is a HUGE update on the much-loved original, but loses one of the previous model's key features: The middle top tether anchor is now GONE, so if you're upgrading from the previous model Amarok and have three across, it's important to take this into account!

Still, this is a VERY promising ute so let’s take a look at how it gets on with our BabyDrive testing…

There are ISOFix in the two outer rear seats of the VW Amarok. They are not within plastic guides but are nice and easy to attach to.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok ISOFIX child seat anchorages in the second row

There are top tether anchorages for the two outer rear seats ONLY in the VW Amarok. They are positioned behind the rear seat back, they are metal bars fixed to the body of the ute.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok top tether child seat anchorages in the second row

The rear seatback comes forward in one piece when you pull the cord to release it. You can then reach behind and attach the top tether straps to the anchorages.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok top tether child seat anchorages in the second row

It can be a bit tricky when installing two child seats, like in all dual cab utes, but you can manage it! I installed the Infasecure Adapt More Infant Capsule rear-facing behind the driver and the Infasecure Achieve More forward-facing on the other side. We could fit a 178cm driver in front of the rear-facing Infasecure Adapt More or taller with forward-facing child seats.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok space between two child seats installed in the second row

For families that need to travel with three children in the back, you are limited to using the Infasecure Versatile folding booster seat, for children aged 4-8 years, in the central rear seat because its super lightweight design means it does not require a top tether anchorage; however, it is the only child seat that can go in the central position.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok space between two child seats installed in the second row

An adult can sit comfortably in the middle between these two Infasecure child seats.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok space between two child seats installed in the second row

The Infasecure Adapt More Infant Capsule is perfect for use in the Volkswagen Amarok and other dual-cab utes because it is the only infant capsule in Australia with the top tether strap attached to the base. So once you have installed the seat base and top tether strap into the vehicle, you never have to remove it; it remains there.

You simply take the capsule itself in and out of the vehicle when you want to. The top tether strap is not attached to the capsule itself, so you don't have to reattach it or reconnect it every time you take the capsule in and out of the vehicle. Trust me, it's a game-changer, especially for utes where adjusting the top tether strap can be very difficult.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok legroom with rear-facing child seats installed in the second row

Rear passengers are also kept nice and comfortable in the back of the VW Amarok with rear air vents. There is also a 12V socket below the vents so you could run an electric Esky when camping.

Storage throughout the 2023 Volkswagen Amarok dual-cab ute is good; there are two cup holders in a fold-down armrest in the central seat back that will hold a kid's drink cup and a reusable or disposable coffee cup.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok legroom with forward-facing child seats installed in the second row

Door bins in the back will hold a large refillable water bottle and an iPad fits in them too.

There are map pockets in both the front seat backs that will hold and conceal an iPad. At the top of both seat backs are two other little pouches that are great for storing phones and other kiddie nik-naks!

2023 Volkswagen Amarok legroom with forward-facing child seats installed in the second row

Also, on the front of the central seat base are three more little storage pouches.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok legroom with forward-facing child seats installed in the second row

In the front, the door bins are longer and will hold an iPad lying down with a refillable water bottle.

The 2023 VW Amarok has a generous glove box that will fit an iPad and wallet with the manual.

A storage tray in the middle of the dash that is good for popping the bread or milk when you nip out for it or on road trips the map could go there.

There are two cup holders in the central console that will hold a reusable or disposable coffee cup and a phone charging tray in front of the gear lever. The central console box is big enough for a pack of wipes.

There is a lined glasses case in the ceiling and lit vanity mirrors in both front visors.

The tray of the 2023 Volkswagen Amarok dual-cab ute is generous in size and will fit 31 shopping bags from empty, a new champion! The 2023 Ford Ranger, Mazda BT-50 and Isuzu D-Max, all hold 30 shopping bags; the GWM Cannon and Toyota Hilux both hold 29 bags, the Mitsubishi Triton fits 28 bags and the Jeep Gladiator holds 27.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok boot space for shopping with two rows of seats in use

You can carry as many prams, shopping, bikes and dogs as your family needs, and it's great for a family camping trip. The tailgate is heavy and it's just at child height, so you need to watch they don't walk into it or it falls down on their head!

A twin, side-by-side pram fits in the tray of the 2023 Volkswagen Amarok with eighteen shopping bags around it.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok boot space for twin side by side stroller pram and shopping with two rows of seats in use

The Jiffle Wagon 6-in-1 pram with seat fits in the tray of the VW Amarok with nineteen shopping bags.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok boot space for shopping with single stroller pram if two rows of seats are in use

The Jiffle Wagon 6-in-1 pram with bassinet fits in the tray of the VW Amarok with sixteen shopping bags.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok boot space for shopping with single stroller pram if two rows of seats are in use

The Jiffle Wagon 6-in-1 pram with the Adapt More Infant Capsule installed into the cab of the VW Amarok fits in the tray with twenty-three shopping bags.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok boot space for shopping with single stroller pram if two rows of seats are in use

The Jiffle Wagon 6-in-1 pram cart fits in the tray of the VW Amarok with twenty-three shopping bags. The cart also holds up to 60kg of groceries inside, so you can leave it packed with your shopping or parenting tool kit!

2023 Volkswagen Amarok boot space for shopping with single stroller pram if two rows of seats are in use

Any size dog will fit in the tray of the VW Amarok dual cab ute.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok boot space for dogs with two rows of seats in use

The media system in the new VW Amarok dual cab ute is massive, very modern and easy to use.

It has built-in sat nav…

… and you can control the climate through the media system too.

Within the vehicle settings screen, you can customise a lot of settings and turn warnings on or off.

When you put the Amarok into reverse, the camera images are lovely crisp, and clear, and you can turn the parking sensors off easily in the bottom right corner of the screen.

The VW Amarok has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, so you can access your phone's listening, messaging and navigation apps while driving along.

When it comes to the drive, the new VW Amarok feels unusually nippy and agile to drive for a big dual-cab ute. The steering is nice and light and the turning circle is good for a vehicle of this size.

Visibility is good in the Amarok because you are seated so high up you can still see out of the rear windscreen, even with the two outer child seats installed in the back and the Infasecure Versatile folding booster seat in the central seat. Although it's a big vehicle maneuvering it around town and school and supermarket car parks is surprisingly easy.

The 2023 VW Amarok Dual Cab Ute has a five-star ANCAP safety rating and has nine airbags as standard; Dual frontal, side chest-protecting and side head-protecting (curtain) airbags, and driver and passenger knee airbags as well as a centre airbag which provides added protection to front seat occupants in side impact crashes, is also standard.

The VW Amarok has a clear seatbelt removal visual in the driver's display.

 

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