2021 Volkswagen Tiguan Review

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Volkswagen has taken a literal step-up from its old Tiguan range. The manufacturer has created a longer, wider model which elevates the driver. Even entry-level Match trims are great value, readied with all the technology and space you’d expect from a premium family SUV.

If you’re after class-leading practicality, there’s a seven-seat Tiguan Allspace Goliath which is 215mm longer and offers passengers 60mm more legroom. Alternatively, there’s a sporty R-Line version of the Tiguan that gets performance upgrades which make transform it into a fun-to-drive SUV.

In an SUV market where the likes of Hyundai, Nissan and Skoda dominate, how does the new Volkswagen Tiguan hold up? Read on for our full review of the tech, specs and more of all Tiguan trims.

“Unlike older models, there are now bold sculpted lines across the body, giving it a bolder, aggressive look.”

Cameron Hale, Moneyshake Car Reviewer

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2021 Volkswagen Tiguan interior

Volkswagen Tiguan Interior Design

Space is a major advantage the Tiguan range holds on its competitors. And with the larger Allspace model available, Volkswagen claims you can have enough space for seven people in there. The more the merrier.

Passengers in the back benefit from a hefty amount of legroom and headspace in the Tiguan. Even three adults in the back is possible, despite a large ridge between both foot wells. There’s an option to increase the carrying capacity to five passengers in the back. The package fits two extra seats in the cargo area. But this costs extra.

Just like most Volkswagen models, the Tiguan has a quality interior build that might not be the most exciting, but you know you’re sat in something premium for the price tag. There are plenty of soft-touch materials in parts high up.

Things get better still inside when you opt for the range-topping, sporty R-Line spec. With it comes plush features such as 30-colour ambient lighting, stainless steel pedals and aluminium trim inserts that separate it from the rest of the range.

There are additional features you can add to the car’s interior, all of which seem a bit unnecessary. A panoramic sunroof and a 230V socket in the boot with a luggage light are a couple of examples. Tinted glass windows for the back, too.

2021 Volkswagen Tiguan infotainment and tech

The infotainment system for the Tiguan is displayed via an 8in touchscreen colour display, which features multi-device assist for the driver to be able to link a smartphone. The connection is through USB and not the more up-to-date Bluetooth option. DAB radio is included with all models, also.

The safety tech on the Tiguan is solid across the range. For starters you’ve got Front Assist with an emergency braking system. This scans the front of your car – warning you when you get too close, then applies the brakes to avoid a collision. Pretty neat considering it’s not always easy to judge distance ahead. The emergency braking applies at speeds under 18mph. If you don’t brake enough, the system boosts the pressure to prevent a collision.

Lane assist is another neat feature on all Tiguan models. When the car senses you’re being distracted, it steers you gently back between the lines. The system is active when you’re driving at 40mph or more. A built-in camera in the rear-view mirror takes care of the detection work.

Stepping up to mid-range Life spec will get you additional safety features such as adaptive cruise control which keeps you at a safe distance from the car in front. You’ll also benefit from Dynamic Road Sign Display which shows you the speed limit of the road you’re on, while parking is made easier thanks to front and rear parking sensors being standard.

Should you want a larger driver information display, you can get a bigger 10.25in or 12.3in when you opt for higher-spec Elegance or R-Line spec.

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2021 Volkswagen Tiguan practicality

Volkswagen Tiguan Exterior Rear View

All Volkswagen Tiguan models come with an array of handy practical features that make it very easy to live with. For starters, all but the entr-level Standard spec come with adjustable lumbar support for the front passengers. On top of this, you’ll get 40/20/40 split-folding rear seats that make prioritising passenger or boot space a breeze.

Carrying less than three passengers? Those in the back can make good use out of the comfortable centre arm rest, which also has two cup holders. If they’re not enough, big door bins in the back and front are also offered on all models.

Up front in the Tiguan, storage space is premium. A fold-away storage slot for your phone to avoid distraction, a large glove box and accompanying door bins are standard.

What you’ll notice is a storage compartment on top of the dashboard. It may be a convenient place to store your phone, or those much-needed travel snacks.

The new Tiguan has a mega boot upgrade of 145 litres, with the total space now 615 litres with the seats up. With the seats folded down, you’re looking at 1,655 litres of storage. You’ll be glad to know that the seats in the back are versatile in their folding capabilities too. So, you can have passengers in the back and carry your desired luggage. No dramas.

2021 Volkswagen Tiguan on the road

Volkswagen Tiguan Exterior

The Standard trim alone is sufficient enough thanks to a smooth, economical 1.5-litre 130bhp engine that kicks off the range. With a 0-60mph time of 10.9 seconds and combined fuel efficiency of 46mpg, it’s a great all-rounder, however there’s a more powerful 150bhp which is our pick of the bunch. To get it you’ll need to choose the next level up Life spec or higher, but it’s worth the extra cost.

Unlike the lesser powered petrol unit, the 150bhp petrol engine comes with the choice of manual or automatic gearbox. Go with the latter and you’ll get a faster acceleration thanks to the smooth-shifting DSG transmission (0-60mph takes 9.2 seconds instead of 9.9 seconds on the manual).

For proper peppy performance, look to the top-spec R-Line model. It has the choice of larger 2.0-litre petrol and diesel engines, the former of which is available with 190bhp or 245bhp which will give most hot hatches a run for their money.

Likened to a raised Golf, the Tiguan has great 17in alloy wheels. They grip the road very well, and don’t leave you feeling a lot of roll around corners. This might be worth considering if you have passengers who are prone to feeling car sick.

This nippy SUV comes with a good variety of engine types, and the 2.0-litre turbo diesel will be the best choice for if you do a lot of miles. With 150bhp and fuel efficiency of 54mpg, it’s perfect for high mileage drivers.

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