When the go­ing gets brisk ...

Herald Sun - Motoring - - FIVE THINGS - Craig Duff

1 You can’t ar­gue with COTY

The Tiguan is a freshly minted Cars­guide Car of the Year and the all-wheel drive 132 TSI ar­guably rep­re­sents the best value in the range, as­sum­ing your budge stretches to $41,490. De­fault gear in­cludes an eight-inch in­fo­tain­ment screen with sat­nav and in-built con­nec­tiv­ity for An­droid Auto and Ap­ple CarPlay, au­to­mated park­ing, city-speed au­ton­o­mous emer­gency brak­ing, three-zone cli­mate con­trol, lane-de­par­ture warn­ing and chrome bling to lift an al­ready classy interior.

2

It’s a faux 4WD

A dial amid­ships se­lects driv­ing modes from Snow to On-Road, Off-Road and a vari­able Off-Road mode with ad­justable steer­ing and en­gine/ trans­mis­sion re­sponse. The Off-Road mode is limited only by the road-bi­ased tyres and the Tiguan’s 201mm ride height. On road, there are Eco, Com­fort, Nor­mal and Sport set­tings.

3

It’s a grown-up Golf

The Tiguan isn’t too far be­hind its hatch sta­ble­mate in terms of han­dling and ride — not sur­pris­ing, as they share ba­sic struc­ture and driv­e­lines. The 2.0-litre turbo four feeds 132kW/320Nm to all four wheels via a seven-speed du­al­clutch trans­mis­sion. This is a car that will hit speed humps with­out putting the rear pas­sen­gers’ heads into the roof lin­ing yet cor­ners as briskly as any SUV should. The steer­ing and chas­sis re­sponse com­ple­ment the rest of the pack­age to make the 132 TSI a de­cent shop­ping trolley or ca­pa­ble week­end cruiser down the back roads with a full con­tin­gent on board.

4

Pack­ag­ing is pre­mium

Lit­tle things count and VW ex­cels here. Deft touches range from felt-lined door pock­ets to pock­ets un­der the front seats and rub­ber flip-up tray ta­bles mounted on the back of the front seats. The 60mm in­crease in length en­dows ex­tra rear legroom, aided by a slid­ing bench with 180mm to travel. Boot space is 615L with sec­ondrow seats in use (though fully for­ward), in­creas­ing to a mas­sive 1655L when folded.

5

Driver as­sis­tance is fit­ted across the range

There is no short­age of driver aids even on the base model, which is among the rea­sons VW asks more for the Tiguan than Asian ri­vals do for their SUVs. It’s also a unique sell­ing point. Stan­dard gear in­cludes seven airbags, au­ton­o­mous emer­gency brak­ing, lane de­par­ture warn­ing, an ac­tive bon­net that fires up to pro­tect pedes­tri­ans when they wan­der on to the road and into your car, self-park­ing, rev­ers­ing cam­era and fa­tigue mon­i­tor­ing. No sur­prise it gets five ANCAP stars.

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