New Volkswagen Tiguan Review

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Volkswagen with its new Tiguan is driving another nail in the coffin of the family saloon. The SUV market is growing at a huge rate across Europe and while I was never any good at maths 100% is a finite amount and SUVs share is growing and the dependable saloon car is starting to lose out. The writing is on the wall or tailgate of the SUV in front of you and after a week in a Tiguan I would have it before a spec’ed up Jetta or a Passat in a heartbeat.

volkswagen tiguan

The driving position is commanding and the ride comfort very good. The exterior has been sharpened and is very smart looking. The bonnet creases are beautifully engineered and almost sharp to the touch! Other subtle but noticeable design touches like the door handles that sits in a body line crease as per the latest Passat add a touch of class. The grille and front end is elegant and even the daytime running lights are impressive. The rear gets a broader tailgate that looks much better and has better access to boot (see what I did there… sorry!). The first Tiguan was over priced in Ireland and dull – if it was a colour it would be beige. The new Tiguan has a more desirable sharper look that looks more like a premium offering.

volkswagen tiguan

Tiguan sits on VW’s MQB adaptable modular platform. Tiguan is wider and longer than the original model. The rear of the cabin is now more versatile thanks to a sliding rear bench. The launch engine range has one 125hp petrol and a 2 litre diesel with 150hp that will be joined by a higher output 2 litres with 190hp and 240hp plus there will be a GTE hybrid too. 4Motion all wheel drive is available although two wheel drive versions will be the big sellers. Manual and DSG gearboxes feature.

Our Highline test car had lots of toys but the digital instrument display stood out as being particularly attractive… not quite as nice as sister company Audi’s Active Cockpit but it is something the bigger selling Nissan Qashqai and Hyundai Tucson haven’t got.

volkswagen tiguan

The headline grabbing price is €29,790 for the 1.4 litre petrol powered Trendline VW Tiguan… but no one buys the bog standard model. Comfortline is always the popular grade (from €33,765) and there is a cool sporty R Line trim as well but Volkswagen Ireland has been doing a lot of up selling and with attractive finance deals getting customers to go in to Highline models – the version dealers love to see coming back as trade-ins as they are so easy to sell on. My Highline front wheel drive test car featured a manual gearbox. Power was from the diesel 150hp 2 litre TDI we know well from other VW products. CO2 is 125g/km – so its sits in tax band B1. The OTR (on the road) price is €36,790 and the equipment levels are pretty good with 18 inch alloys, LED headlights, winter pack, multi-function steering wheel, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning and lane assist to name a few of the creature comforts and safety aids. Nice ‘Deep Black Pearl Effect’ paint for €599 brought our car’s total to €37,389. A 115hp 2 litre TDI is on the way and will, we expect, be the big seller.

volkswagen tiguan

On the road the ride impresses. It’s a smooth, quiet and comfortable machine. I never felt the desire to give it the beans but when I did it felt competent if not overly inspiring. You will feel good though behind the wheel of new Tiguan, and that bit superior to anyone in a Japanese or Korean offering.

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About Author

Michael Sheridan

Michael is Motorhub's Editor. Well known from TV and radio, Michael has been writing, presenting and judging cars since the mid 90's. He is a renowned Producer/Director and documentary film maker. Dozens of credits include: The Whole Way Round (Gay Byrne), The Shamrock Run (Alan Shortt), The Viking Run (Clodagh McKenna) and The Irish 66ers (David Mitchell) and The Climb for Kids (Colin Farrell). Print credits include: the RTE Guide (motoring editor 1999-2003), many national daily papers and Sundays including The Irish Times (freelance) plus other magazines. National radio credits include multiple at RTE Gerry Ryan show, the Mooney Show, The Dave Fanning Show, Drivetime etc. TV credits as a motoring expert include RTE's flagship current affairs show Primetime and TV3's Ireland AM. Michael also presented RTE's car show Drive! in the late 90s and directed some items in MPH2 on TG4. Michael contributes weekly on motoring issues to The Last Word show with Matt Cooper on Today FM. Michael has represented Ireland's motoring journalists in Motorsport at the International Mazda MX-5 endurance race series in Italy and the Arctic Ice Race. He has been a Car of the Year Judge for over 18 years and is a former Chairperson of the Association of Professional Motoring Press (APMP).

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