For 2006, Volkswagen will upgrade its flagship Phaeton W12 model with an increase of 24 horsepower compared to last year`s model. Its 6.0-liter, 12-cylinder model now offers 444 hp at 6,000 revolutions per minute and 406 lbs.-ft. of torque between 3,250 and 4,250 rpm.
The 2006 Phaeton W12 can be ordered at most Volkswagen dealerships in the United States. From a sitting start, acceleration reaches 60 miles per hour in under 6.0 seconds with a top speed electronically limited to 130 miles per hour.
Volkswagen`s innovative `W` engine architecture is essentially two V-shaped, six-cylinder engines with one leg of each `V` inside the other. The design helps the powerful 12-cylinder engine remain relatively compact and lightweight. An aluminum cylinder block and aluminum-alloy cylinder heads further reduce weight and maintain integrity.
A dependable, chain-driven valve train features a dual overhead camshaft design with four valves per cylinder, maintenance-free hydraulic lifters and variable valve timing. A Motronic Engine Management System with sequential, multi-point injection and digital electronic ignition delivers consistent fuel supply and spark. A variable intake manifold and variable intake- and exhaust-cam timing optimize air supply and engine breathing.
Many of the refined engine features of the high-tech W12 also can be found on the 2006 Phaeton V8 model which uses five valves per cylinder. The 4.2-liter, eight-cylinder engine is SAE-rated at 335 hp at 6,500 rpm and 317 lbs.-ft. at 3,500 rpm.
The 2006 Phaeton V8 accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 6.7-seconds. Top speed also is electronically limited to 130 mph, and the 4.2-liter V8 model achieves an EPA fuel economy rating of 22 miles per gallon on the highway cycle and 16 mpg in the city test.
Volkswagen 4Motion? all-wheel-drive distributes the engine power to those wheels with the greatest grip at any moment. For added traction control, the Phaeton continues to offer a four-wheel ABS anti-lock brake system, front and rear vented disc brakes, Anti-Slip Regulation and an Electronic Stabilization Program with brake assist.
The four-corner air adjustable suspension system on all Volkswagen Phaetons allows for superior ride comfort and balanced, nimble vehicle control. The system adds to the already smooth ride and sure handling provided by the vehicle`s four-link front suspension and trapezoidal wishbone rear suspension. Front and rear anti-roll bars further help to reduce vehicle body sway.
To maintain the Phaeton`s unique combination of comfort and Teutonic control over varied road conditions and at different speeds, the air suspension system allows adjustment of the ground clearance from 4.4 inches at high speed over smooth roads to five inches for normal conditions and around-town speed, and finally to six inches. for traveling rough road conditions at slower speeds.
The air-adjustable ground clearance change is done automatically, with manual selection possible according to the speed of travel. In addition, four adjustable damping settings and Electronic Damping Control allow selectable fine-tuning of the ride and driving dynamics, and an auto-leveling feature maintains fore-and-aft balance.
The 2006 Phaeton V8 comes equipped with a six-speed automatic transmission with Tiptronic? for driver-selected gear changes, a Dynamic Shift Program (DSP) that `learns` and replicates driving habits, and a sport mode for delayed upshifts and quicker downshifts. The Phaeton W12 comes equipped with a five-speed automatic transmission with Tiptronic, DSP and sport mode.
Keyless entry to the 2006 Phaeton is via a sensor in the exterior door handle, which also can be used to securely lock all of the doors from the outside. Once inside, a `soft-close` system assists in closing doors securely to prepare for travel.
The Phaeton offers a choice of four- or five-seat configuration with 18-way adjustable driver`s seat and 16-way adjustable front passenger seat standard in the Phaeton W12. Rear outboard seats offer 10-way power adjustment in the four-seater.
The standard, leather-trimmed seats in the Phaeton offer among the most luxurious and high-tech seating in the industry. Both the front and rear seats are available with A/C ventilation, electric heating and massage, power lumbar support and position memory. Individual front and rear seat armrests with storage also are available.
For audiophile-quality sound, a 270-watt sound system is available and includes 12 speakers, a 12-channel amplifier, a sub woofer, a seven-mode Digital Sound Processor and a glove box-mounted, six-disc CD changer.
Four-zone Climatronic? automatic climate control can be adjusted for individual comfort of the driver, front passenger and outboard rear-seat passengers. Independent rear climate controls and displays are available as an option. The 2006 Phaeton W12 also features infrared and heat-reflecting glass to help control the cabin atmosphere.
A standard infotainment system includes a multi-function onboard computer with color display that can be used for adjusting the climate control, navigation, air-adjustable suspension, tire pressure monitor and vehicle settings. The Navigation System is CD- based, delivering both visual and audio directions through a color center console display. A second, smaller color display in the instrument cluster features trip and fuel data. Preparation for a Bluetooth-compatible cell phone may be available as an option later in the model year.
For added safety, comfort and convenience, the 2006 Phaeton comes equipped with automatically dimming exterior mirrors that include electric heat, position memory and power folding for tight parking and automatic car washes. A power rear sunshade and manual side rear sunshades also are standard.
As expected in a vehicle the caliber of Phaeton, elegant and rich interior wood trim is standard. The 2006 Phaeton V8 includes Eucalyptus wood, while Phaeton W12 comes with Walnut wood trim. Myrtle and Chestnut woods are available trim options. A leather shift knob with chrome and wood accents, genuine wood inlay door handles and stainless steel foot pedals are standard.
Both 2006 Phaeton models offer optional Electronic Parking Assistance, a heated steering wheel and an electric open and close trunk feature. Special-order exterior paints in metallic, pearl and heliochrome colors and with a `Klavierlack` high gloss finish are available, as are special-order leathers for the interiors. As a no-cost option, 17-inch alloy wheels and all-season, snow chain-compatible tires are available.
All new Volkswagens offer a host of safety features as standard equipment, and the 2006 Phaeton is no exception. A driver and front passenger airbag supplemental restraint system is standard now. Side thorax air bag supplemental restraints for the driver, front passenger and rear outboard passenger, plus Side Curtain Protection?, are all standard.
In addition to exterior model badges, the 2006 Phaeton W12 is distinguished by the quad exhaust pipes out back; the V8 has dual exhaust. Both vehicles come equipped with 18-inch alloy wheels and tires as standard.
In the automotive world, the Phaeton W12 and Phaeton V8 arguably are the closest to perfection with unmatched levels of premium appointments and luxury. The top-of-the-line Volkswagen sedans truly do fall into that category of German automobiles often reverently referred to as ?ber sport-luxury.
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