Touareg hybrid will come with a supercharged 3.0 liter V6 TSI engine with 333 hp and 440 Nm of torque coupled to an electric motor with an additional 52 hp and 300 Nm of pulling capacity.

A new VW Touareg is expected sometime in 2011, so these spy pics of the large SUV from Wolfsburg doing some heavily-camouflaged hot-weather testing in the U.S. Southwest are not entirely surprising.

The news here is that the vehicle(s?) spotted here is a hybrid variant, which VW has announced will be a feature of the VW Touareg sometime soon - that is, within the next couple of years.

German car mag Auto, Motor und Sport is reporting that the next-generation VW Touareg will be about 300 kilograms lighter than its predecessor (like its "cousin" the Porsche Cayenne), but larger too, and feature a third row of seats. They claim there will be considerable styling changes to the SUV, including a new grill, front apron and newly designed lights.

Those details are tough to spot in these shots, but what is striking is how the shape of the Touareg seems different, it is leaner and less bulky than the current model.

The new VW Touareg will come with both a 3.6 liter V6 and a 4.2 liter V8 engine. The hybrid version will be fitted with a 3.0 liter V6 coupled to an electric motor. According to details previously released on the Touareg hybrid, the supercharged, direct-injection V6 (TSI) holds 245 kW (333 hp) and 440 Nm (325 lb-ft) of torque. The electric motor adds 38 kW (52 hp) and an additional, whopping 300 Nm (221 lb-ft) torque.

Regardless of its fuel consumption numbers, it suffices to say, the Touareg hybrid won't come with any towing capacity issues.