Volkswagen Tiguan Review & Prices
The Volkswagen Tiguan is a spacious, comfortable and good-to-drive SUV. Cheaper versions are dull to look at, though, and the Tiguan is pricier than many of its alternatives.
What's not so good
Find out more about the Volkswagen Tiguan
Is the Volkswagen Tiguan a good car?
The Volkswagen Tiguan is one of life’s simpler SUVs — it’s big and spacious, has the high-up driving position that everyone wants, and it has a desirable badge on the nose. You can have it with petrol or diesel power, or as a low-emissions plug-in hybrid.
Alternatives include the SEAT Ateca and Skoda Karoq, with which the Tiguan shares its engines and many of its underpinnings. But despite the similarities beneath the skin, there are some significant differences too. Imagine they’re a trio of school kids: the SEAT is sporty and athletic; the Skoda is smart and pragmatic; and the VW Tiguan is well-dressed and loves its tech.
The Tiguan’s appeal is wide-ranging as a result of its classier image. In high-spec form it could be seen as an alternative to the Volvo XC40, Mercedes GLA, Audi Q3 and BMW X1 small SUVs. In lesser trims, it can be an alternative to a higher-spec Nissan Qashqai or Renault Kadjar.
On the inside, the Tiguan also has a bit of a split personality. High-spec models are smart-looking and have plush seats, yet the cheaper models have more obvious hard and scratchy plastics that seem out of place in an upmarket model like this. It’s really worth paying attention to the spec to get the best out of this VW SUV.
The infotainment screen is packed with features including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and there are options including digital dials and a large main screen. It’s a bit fiddly to use, though, as there aren’t enough physical buttons – it’s all touch-sensitive panels that aren’t very good to use while driving.
Our pick of the range is the 1.5 petrol in R-Line trim. It's a great engine for all types of driving, and R-Line goodies makes the Tiguan look its best
The VW Tiguan is really practical. There’s plenty of room in the back seats and the boot is easily big enough for everything you need, from a weekly shop to a kitted-out camping trip with the whole family. If you need seven seats, there’s a different model called the VW Tiguan Allspace – it’s very similar but comes with and extra two seats in the back.
The Tiguan isn’t exactly exciting to drive, but it’s comfy, quiet and feels secure and stable on faster roads. It’s relaxing to know that you’re covered by its advanced safety systems too, including standard automatic emergency city braking. That said, it’s much more focused on comfort than enjoyment on a twisty road – if you’re after the latter, you’d be better served by a SEAT Ateca.
There’s a good range of engines, from a 1.5-litre petrol engine with either 130hp or 150hp right up to the Tiguan R performance SUV with its 320hp 2.0-litre motor. For the more environmentally-minded among you, there’s a half-electric 245hp plug-in hybrid, which has low emissions and an electric range of 28-miles. There are diesel versions using a 2.0-litre engine with 150hp or 200hp. You can also choose from automatic gearbox and 4×4 powertrain options.
The four-wheel drive models are useful if you live somewhere that has a lot of dirt tracks and it snows regularly in winter, but for most people it’s best to avoid these because they aren’t as fuel efficient as their two-wheel-drive counterparts.
If you like the sound of this practical and stylish family SUV, take a look at the latest Volkswagen Tiguan deals.
How much is the Volkswagen Tiguan?
The Volkswagen Tiguan has a RRP range of £29,910 to £42,840. However, with carwow you can save on average £2,279. Prices start at £28,025 if paying cash. Monthly payments start at £303. The price of a used Volkswagen Tiguan on carwow starts at £22,250.
Our 3 most popular versions of the Volkswagen Tiguan are:
|Model version||carwow price from|
|1.5 TSI Life 5dr||£28,025||Compare offers|
|1.5 TSI 150 R-Line 5dr DSG||£34,074||Compare offers|
|1.5 TSI 150 Life 5dr DSG||£30,629||Compare offers|
The Tiguan is very competitively priced within the realms of family SUVs. It’s just fractionally more expensive than the Ford Kuga when it comes to base price, and the plug-in hybrid versions of both cars are almost identically-priced. That holds true for the Peugeot 3008 too, although the Peugeot’s plug-in hybrid model is more expensive than the Tiguan PHEV (although the French car is also a little more powerful, too.)
Interestingly, the big-selling Nissan Qashqai significantly undercuts the VW on price, although as it currently comes with only two mild-hybrid petrol engines, it doesn’t offer as much choice as the Tiguan.
There’s also competition from the mechanically-identical Skoda Karoq and Seat Ateca. The Skoda is slightly cheaper than the Volkswagen, but the Seat is priced significantly lower. That’s in part because the cheapest versions of both cars come with a tiny (but surprisingly effective) 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine, whereas the Tiguan range kicks off with a 1.5-litre unit.
Performance and drive comfort
The Volkswagen Tiguan is easy to drive and has a range of strong and fairly economical engines – but top-spec R-Line models aren’t as comfortable over bumps as the rest of the Tiguan range
As with all SUVs, you do sit up a bit higher than in a normal hatchback so you get a better view out. That said, you don’t sit up as high in the VW Tiguan as you would in a larger SUV, such as a Land Rover Discovery Sport, but it’s probably high enough for most people.
The standard suspension is pretty comfy over in-town bumps, and there’s optional adaptive suspension that has a Comfort mode and that’s even, well, comfier. For a car of its size, the Tiguan also has a reasonable turning circle — 11.5-metres — so you can zip easily around mini-roundabouts and the like, and the light steering helps.
The Tiguan eHybrid comes into its own in town, of course, and as long as you’ve remembered to charge it up, you can swish about on silent, zero-emissions electric power. Parking’s easy thanks to good visibility and standard-fit rear parking sensors, and you can upgrade to a clever automated parking system if you struggle with your parallel spaces.
On the motorway
The Tiguan’s a terrific car for a long journey on motorways or dual carriageways. It’s quiet and comfortable — key ingredients for a good mile-muncher.
If you’re doing big miles, it’s worth having a look at the two diesel engine options (yes, even with fuel prices the way they are…) as they’re both impressively frugal, but the 1.5-litre petrol engine is not to be dismissed. It’s very refined, and is more economical than you might think (40mpg in daily driving), not to mention much cheaper to buy than the diesels. You can save almost £3,500 on the up-front cost by going for the petrol engine, which pays for a lot of extra petrol.
Adaptive cruise control is available, and there’s an all-singing-and-dancing Travel Assist option, which keeps you in the centre of your lane and makes long runs so much easier on the nerves.
On a twisty road
The Tiguan gets selectable driving modes including a Sport setting, on all but the basic version, which sharpens up the steering and throttle, and stiffens up the suspension if you’ve shelled out for those adaptive dampers. If you’ve got the DSG automatic gearbox, you’ll get gearshift paddles for manual changes too, which seems ever so slightly pointless in a big, chunky family car…
Indeed, the Tiguan probably drives at its best when the settings are in the dull-sounding ‘Normal’ mode. It’s not fun, but there’s nicely-responsive steering and confidence-inspiring grip. The Tiguan basically doesn’t put a wheel wrong, but look elsewhere (the BMW X1 perhaps…) for more thrills behind the wheel.
Space and practicality
There’s enough room in the back of a Volkswagen Tiguan for even tall passengers to get comfy – but three adults side by side will feel a bit squashed.
The Volkswagen Tiguan is a very practical car, as you might expect. You get a decent glovebox, storage space under the front seat armrest, and more space on the centre console with two big cupholders that can fold away to make one big(ger) storage tray. There’s more storage in front of the gear lever, with two USB-C sockets and a 12-volt connector.
The door bins are huge — never mind a water bottle, you could practically fit a slim suitcase in there, and they’re felt-lined so nothing rattles. There’s one extra, small, storage tray that folds out down by your right knee for anything that needs to be tucked away securely.
Space in the back seats
There’s loads of legroom in the back of the Tiguan, even if the driver or front-seat passenger is tall and likes to push their seat back a bit. There’s even space for your feet, thanks to the front seats sitting up that little bit higher, so you can tuck your toes under.
Headroom in the back is good too, although it gets reduced a bit if you go for the optional panoramic sunroof. The rear seats slide back and forth, so you can juggle legroom or boot space depending on what you need more of, and the backs of the seats adjust too, so you can sit upright or lay back a little.
Three people will fit in the back seat, but there is a transmission hump in the floor, so the middle-seat passenger will struggle to find space for their feet. Three adults will find that their shoulders rub together, too. One nice thing is that the rear windows are big and square, so you get as good view out — crucial if you’re carrying kids around.
Higher-spec models get tri-zone climate control so those in the back can set their own temperature, and there are more power sockets for USB-C and 12-volt plugs. You get the expected seat-back map pockets, but better yet you get smaller pockets up high on the seat-backs that are ideal for storing a mobile phone or small tablet. Or some Wine Gums…
The door bins aren’t as big as those in the front, but they’re still pretty generous. You’ll have to put up with some cheaper, scratchy plastics in the back, but on the upside there are easy-access ISOFIX points, and it’s easy to load in a child car safety seat thanks to the fact that the doors open so wide.
Higher-spec Tiguans get a powered tailgate (but it’s quite slow so maybe just lift it up yourself?). The boot itself is huge, with 520-litres of space up to the luggage cover, and you can expand that to 615-litres if you slide the back seats all the way forward.
However, if you’ve bought the eHybrid version of the Tiguan, that falls by 139-litres to 476-litres — smaller, but still decent.
The Tiguan’s boot isn’t as roomy as the vast Skoda Kodiaq, but it’s hardly lacking — we reckon you can fit six aeroplane carry-on suitcases without even moving the parcel shelf. There’s a flat load lip, so heavier items are easy to load and unload, and there are lots of luggage hooks and tie-down points. There’s also a 12-volt socket if you need to power anything out of the boot, such as a tyre inflator or maybe even a cool-box for soft drinks.
There are small extra storage trays at each side of the boot, and when you need to lift the boot floor up to get at the spare wheel, there are little spring-clips that hold it in place so that it doesn’t slip back down and bonk you on the head. That boot floor is also height adjustable, although the difference in height is only just over an inch.
The rear seats can be easily folded by tugging levers in the boot, but they don’t quite fold 100 per cent flat, and you’ll need to lean in (or go through the back doors) to push them down fully into place. Of course, if you want more space you could try the bigger, seven-seat Tiguan Allspace…
Interior style, infotainment and accessories
The Tiguan’s interior is intuitively laid-out and has impressive optional tech. Most of its materials feel fairly plush too, but it doesn’t look particularly exciting…
The Volkswagen Tiguan’s interior might look familiar if you’ve driven the previous model, but there are some changes and updates.
There’s a new steering wheel, which comes with touch-sensitive buttons. These have a little haptic ‘push’ sensation when you touch them, so they almost feel like a real switch. This sort of makes you wonder why they didn’t just use normal buttons… You can swipe and slide for extra functions, but they’re frustrating to use and not very intuitive.
There are also touch-sensitive buttons for the climate control, and again these are slightly more fiddly than is ideal and not as simple as a knob you can turn. The panel does at least look a little smarter, and so too does the revised gear shifter.
As standard, the Tiguan comes with an eight-inch infotainment system that actually works quite well. There is a nine-inch version too, which is even better. Bigger always is better… It has a logical layout and there are helpful shortcut buttons, as well as gesture control (in which you control the screen by waggling your hands around in front of it). Better yet, there are wireless connections for Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and you’ll probably spend more time using these than VW’s own software.
Life and Active-spec Tiguans get old-school (but rather smart) physical dials, but the rest of the lineup has a 10.25-inch digital instrument screen, which has customisable layouts and lots of information.
The whole design of the Tiguan’s interior hasn’t actually changed all that much, and it’s still quite plain and simple inside, but the dashboard does look a little sleeker and wider than before. Is it a bit drab? Kind of, yes… If you want something a bit more jazzy, check out a rival Volvo XC40.
Overall quality is decent, and the seats are comfortable (plus you can optionally have electric seat adjustment and nice leather if you fancy). The driving position is good, too, and there’s plenty of adjustment — good news if you’re very tall or very short.
MPG, emissions and tax
Fuel consumption is actually a bit of a Tiguan strong suit. That basic 1.5-litre petrol engine should manage 40mpg in daily driving (officially 44mpg), while the diesels will do 50mpg, as long as you avoid the optional 4x4 models. The eHybrid model claims up to 178mpg, but that’s only possible if you use it in electric mode almost all the time — on a longer journey, using the 1.4 turbo petrol engine, it’ll do more like 40mpg.
CO2 emissions for the Tiguan range from as little as 36g/km for the eHybrid, to 136g/km for the 150hp diesel, and 145g/km for the 200hp diesel. The 1.5-litre petrol emits 144g/km for the basic 130hp version, 149g/km for the manual 150hp, and 158g/km for the automatic version.
All of the Tiguan’s engines conform to the latest Euro 6 emissions standards, and that’s important you won’t get slapped with as much as a £12.50 daily charge for driving into a ULEZ (ultra-low emissions zone) or CAZ (clean air zone) such as those in London and Birmingham. The diesel Tiguans do need an AdBlue injection system to meet the current regulations, though, which is another thing to remember to buy and fill up with.
If you’re a private buyer, you’ll pay nothing to tax a Tiguan eHybrid for the first year, but a 1.5 TSI petrol will set you back £220, or £555 for the automatic version. Both diesel models will cost £220 in year one.
For company car users, the eHybrid is again the clear winner, with 20 per cent rate payers charged as little as £66 per month in company car tax. 1.5 TSI petrol tax costs start from around £140 per month, while a diesel model will set you back at minimum £163 per month.
Safety & security
The VW Tiguan gets a full five-star safety rating from the crash test experts at Euro NCAP. Its 96 per cent score for adult occupant safety means that it’s in the very top tier, while its child safety and vulnerable road user ratings are good, too.
As standard, all Tiguans get safety equipment that includes curtain airbags, with side airbags for those in front, driver and passenger airbags, and a driver’s knee-bag. Adaptive cruise control is also standard, as is stability control and a driver drowsiness monitor, road sign recognition, and emergency autonomous braking that can detect pedestrians stepping out in front of you. You also get front and rear parking sensors, and lane-keeping steering.
On the security front, there are ISOFIX anchors for child seats in the outer rear seats, an alarm, central locking with deadlocks, and a built-in emergency ‘e-call’ system that automatically calls for help if it detects that the airbags have gone off and no-one in the car is moving.
Reliability and problems
As standard, all Tiguans come with a three-year, 60,000-mile warranty, but that can be optionally extended to five years and 100,000-miles. You can also extend the mileage limit of the three-year warranty if you think you’re about to exceed 60,000-miles. The Tiguan eHybrid gets a separate eight-year, 100,000-mile warranty for its battery.
VW has prepaid and monthly subscription servicing plans, which cost between £386 and £496 (or £16-£20 per month) and which cover either one oil service and one oil inspection, or one minor service and one major service. Beyond that, you can spend £33 per month for a three-year old car (or older) to cover its regular servicing costs for two years. Volkswagen also offer 0 per cent finance on service and maintenance costs.
In general, Volkswagen makes well-made and reliable cars, but the Tiguan has not done brilliantly in reliability and customer satisfaction surveys, usually ranking behind alternatives such as the Mazda CX-5, Kia Sportage, and Honda CR-V. Some owners have reported issues with the touchscreen, while others mention that the forward-facing sensors for the emergency braking system often cut out because they’ve got dirt or road grime on them.
The Tiguan has had quite a few recalls, for items such as an incorrectly-welded driver’s seat, improperly attached roof spoilers, malfunctioning tow-bars, and even faulty fuel tanks.
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*Please contact the dealer for a personalised quote, including terms and conditions. Quote is subject to dealer requirements, including status and availability. Illustrations are based on personal contract hire, 9 month upfront fee, 48 month term and 8000 miles annually, VAT included.