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Volkswagen Tiguan 2015 review

An assertive stance takes cues from the Tiguan's big brother Touareg.
EXPERT RATING
8
Derek Ogden road tests and reviews the 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 130TDI, with specs, fuel consumption and verdict.

The Volkswagen Tiguan continues to plough a lone furrow through the ranks of the small sports utility vehicle, one of the most competitive classes in the automotive world.

Since its Australian debut in 2008, Volkswagen has continually sought to make additions and improvements to the Tiguan to satisfy the demands of increasingly sophisticated buyers.

Recent upgrades to the range include introducing a more powerful diesel engine and unveiling a striking new flagship model. As well, all models now come standard with a rear-view camera, 6.5-inch colour touchscreen audio system, leather-wrapped multi-function steering wheel, multi-function display and fatigue detection.

The beefed-up 2.0-litre TDI diesel is one of four engines, the others being petrol, and puts out 27 kW of power more than the previous 103TDI motor, with the new 130 kW powerplant boasting a potent 380 Nm of torque. Fuel efficiency is a claimed combined urban / highway cycle of 6.2 litres per 100 kilometres.

The new flagship model, the 155TSI R-Line, keeps the same performance-oriented TSI engine featured in previous Tiguans and receives a stack of additional equipment, including 18-inch Mallory alloy wheels, Adaptive Chassis Control, Vienna leather-appointed seat upholstery and satellite navigation.

The 132TSI and 130TDI Tiguans can also be 'R-Lined' with the 18-inch Mallory alloys, upgraded exterior styling, sports suspension, gear-shift paddles and an R-Line cloth interior.

Prices start at $28,990, plus on-roads, for the 118TSI six-speed manual and hole out at $44,990 for the 155TSI R-Line seven-speed DSG automatic transmission. The test Tiguan was the 130TDI with seven-speed DSG coupled with VW's 4Motion all-wheel drive system

Styling

Taking cues from its big brother VW Touareg, designers were given the task of making the Tiguan appear powerful and muscular. The result is strong wheel-housing shapes, a window line rising towards the rear, distinctive door and wing surfaces and typical VW C-pillars.

Inside, the five-door, five-seater is practical and versatile, with the rear 60:40 split bench adjustable forwards and backwards by up to 160 mm and also able to be reclined. Cargo capacity ranges from 395 to 1510 litres.

Comfortable front seats have height and lumbar adjustment, while under-seat drawers for driver and front passenger add to interior storage space. Front door pockets can take a sizeable drink bottle.

  • 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 130TDI 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 130TDI
  • 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 130TDI 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 130TDI
  • 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 130TDI 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 130TDI
  • 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 130TDI 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 130TDI
  • 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 130TDI 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 130TDI

Infotainment

Volkswagen Tiguans come with the RCD510 6.5 inch colour touchscreen as standard, with all the controls for the driver designed to be intuitive and close at hand. Radio and navigation are at the top of the instrument panel in view of both driver and front passenger.

Engine / Transmission

An upgraded 2.0-litre TDI turbocharged unit, which produces 130 kW at 4200 rpm and 380 Nm of torque between 1750 and 2500 rpm, comes with BlueMotion Technology, 4Motion all-wheel drive, and a standard seven-speed DSG gearbox.

BlueMotion technology incorporates visual gear change recommendation for optimum fuel consumption as well as Stop / Start, Coasting Function and Brake Energy Recuperation.

The upgraded 2.0-litre TDI is a quiet and smooth-running engine, far quieter than found in many large luxury saloon.

Safety

As with every Volkswagen, the Tiguan has daytime running lights, six airbags (front, front side and curtain airbags) and front head restraints as standard. Volkswagen's advanced technologies include Anti-lock Braking, Auto Hold function, Brake Assist and Electronic Brake-pressure Distribution, Anti-Slip Regulation, Electronic Differential Lock, Electronic Stabilisation Program and Engine Braking Control.

Driving

The upgraded 2.0-litre TDI is a quiet and smooth-running engine, far quieter than found in many large luxury saloons. Also having a positive effect on noise reduction is the maintenance-free toothed belt drive for the camshaft.

The Tiguan is fairly responsive – 8.5 seconds to 100 km/h with seamless DSG gearshifts. With VW claiming fuel efficiency of 6.2 litres per 100 kilometres on the combined urban / highway cycle, the best attained on test on the highway was 5.1 litres per 100 kilometres, while a tad over 10 litres per 100 kilometres was the best achieved in town work.

Information projected on to the 6.5-inch centrally situated touchscreen is at the mercy of reflected glare of bright sunlight, as well as sticky finger marks. A folding table flips up from the backs of both front seats, but, beware, don't lean on them too heavily as they can collapse into their put-away positions, with an accompanying embarrassing spillage on the cards. A sturdier clip is called for here.

Verdict

Despite more power and a raft of added technology and convenience features, the VW Tiguan 130TDI DSG remains at the value-for-money end of the small SUV class

Pricing Guides

$21,990
Based on 142 cars listed for sale in the last 6 months
Lowest Price
$12,751
Highest Price
$32,990

Range and Specs

VehicleSpecsPrice*
118 TSI (4x2) 1.4L, PULP, 6 SP MAN $12,751 – 19,990 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 2015 118 TSI (4x2) Pricing and Specs
130 TDI (4x4) 2.0L, Diesel, 7 SP AUTO $19,990 – 32,990 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 2015 130 TDI (4x4) Pricing and Specs
132 TSI (4x4) 2.0L, PULP, 7 SP AUTO $15,992 – 27,990 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 2015 132 TSI (4x4) Pricing and Specs
155 TSI R-Line (4x4) 2.0L, PULP, 7 SP AUTO $21,990 – 30,490 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 2015 155 TSI R-Line (4x4) Pricing and Specs
EXPERT RATING
8
Pricing Guide

$12,751

Lowest price, based on 142 car listings in the last 6 months

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