"We don't live in America" some say, pointing out that pickups can look as out of place in the UK as a Daihatsu Copen would on the highways of Texas. Sometimes they might have a point. Steering a five-metre, 2.2-tonne truck down the lanes of West Sussex can sometimes be not for the feint hearted. But then there are times when it's the perfect vehicle – and one of those is Christmas.
Every year since Victorian times the population of Britain has faced a simple question every December – how do you get six-foot of Chritmas tree home? You'll see all sorts of ingenious solutions – from the cram it into the boot, through the fold-flat rear seats and into the gap between drive and passenger, instantly making the car more tree than vehicle, to the simple strap it to the roof approach. In a Volkswagen Amarok you need not tax your brain in such ways.
The load bay in the Amarok puts estates and SUVs to shame. Sure it isn't the longest around at 1.55m, but that's one sacrifice you make for a full-size double cab. It is however 1.62m wide and 1.22m wide between the wheels (the biggest available). Which means the diagonal is pretty much the perfect size for a six-foot tree.
So why not load up even more? All we had time to pick up was a few logs, and it made the load bay seem underused. If we do Christmas again I think we'll just do every single bit of shopping in one go, the Amarok will swallow the tree, plus presents, decorations and probably the turkey too. Thinking about it, Father Christmas could probably do with one, I bet a 3.0-litre V6 has more torque than some reindeer...