When the going gets brisk ...
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.