The second generation Volkswagen Tiguan was introduced in 2016 and is still available. The model received a facelift in 2020, with the signature front taking on more subtle shapes. The Tiguan is, or was, available with a wide variety of gasoline and diesel engines. A plug-in hybrid should not be missing and a special mention is made of the Tiguan Allspace, an extended version with seven seats if desired. Some owners have also written a review of this XL variant.
Tiguan, comfortable family car?
The Tiguan not only competes with other brands, brothers like the Volkswagen Touran, Golf and Passat Variant must also be believed. Thus, the Tiguan is a business and family car and appears to be very satisfying in that capacity. “The space and the comfort of the seats are really sublime! Both in the front and in the rear you sit like a king and the luggage space is above average”, writes an enthusiastic owner. Another continues with superlative terms. “In the back, the seating comfort is business class. The adjustable backrest also contributes to this, as does the beautiful view with the glass roof. In the evening there is ceiling lighting, a thin strip of LEDs along the edges of the glass, it looks elegant.
Not only the space, but also the comfort of the seats suits most owners and their passengers, as the following user of a 2019 Tiguan Highline Business writes. “The interior is still beautiful, the seats are really comfortable, even in long distances. Plenty of space and my daughters are tall like me, but everyone sits well and likes to walk.” This blissful comfort doesn’t come naturally, let the next user know. “I’m sorry I didn’t ask for a more comfortable ErgoActive chair, if necessary I would have paid a few thousand euros more for a Highline, which includes that standard. This chair is slippery, does not provide good lumbar support, and is difficult to adjust.”
How does the Tiguan drive?
The driver of a Tiguan Allspace sums up his experience: “How do you drive? Extremely relaxed. You can enjoy driving with it and you also feel that the car invites you to do it.” An owner who previously drove a Mazda 6 vouched for the experience. “What VW excels at is driving pleasure for me. I really enjoy the peace, the comfort, the many gadgets and the luxury in the Tiguan.”
Many owners positively mention the silence on board. The owner of a Tiguan 2.0 TDI wants to add something to that: “That will probably apply to the petrol versions, but not to this diesel. I could be wrong, but it’s not much quieter than my Octavia with the same engine or other diesels in the same class. And indeed, owners who experience peace and quiet mainly drive units with 1.4 TSI or 1.5 TSI gasoline engines.
The suspension comfort of the Tiguan is appreciated, although this applies to a lesser extent to the stretched Tiguan Allspace. This version seems noticeably stiffer than its smaller brother and this is noted by several owners. “In my opinion, the suspension travel is too short,” writes a 2019 Allspace user, “because without actually passing a threshold, you can hear the damping has already reached its maximum travel.” It also has comparison material. “Our neighbors have a normal Tiguan, which handles much better and handles potholes much better than the Allspace.”
Infotainment and driving assistance
The Tiguan is equipped with relatively classic infotainment systems and, as usual, physical buttons. Owners, unlike, for example, the new Golf 8, have no complaints about ease of use. The speed and the interface are appreciated, although the voice control seems improved. “You can expect the craziest reactions. For example, ‘Call Aunt Sjaan’ becomes ‘I’m calling 112’”.
Roughly the same applies to driver assistance systems. People are very satisfied with adaptive cruise control, also in combination with lane assist. The owner of a 2.0 TDI Highline Business R also experiences this: “Adaptive cruise control in combination with lane assist is a very good option. I have never been so relaxed in a traffic jam. The car brakes on its own and also accelerates when the traffic starts to move.”
However, a relatively large number of drivers report ‘phantom braking’, emergency brake assist intervention out of the blue. “This happens regularly on an empty road that isn’t even bordered by houses or bushes. Because? No idea… 1 time the emergency braking system was activated on a dark and deserted road; fortunately without followers”. The owner who shares this experience also sees a positive point. “However, the system already helped me when braking in a parking maneuver that was deemed too optimistic.” The driver of a 2018 Tiguan Allspace had the system checked by the shop. “Recalibrated and sensor cleaned. It seems to work better now, but at dusk and with a lot of metal on and around the road, it remains to pay attention. Then you can brake hard.”
Discomfort and malfunction
The intervention of the emergency brake assistant seems to be the biggest annoyance for drivers, but there is less suffering. “An update after 20,000 km”, writes the driver of a 2016 1.4 TSI, “The car drives well, but I don’t think the quality is the best. I expected more. Lots of squeaks and creaks, you don’t expect that with an expensive car.” The owner of a 2.0 TSI four-wheel drive experiences chassis creaks in winter, steering column noise and noticeable engine noise.” A user with a 1.5 TSI complains about oil consumption. “Volkswagen casually says that it is quite normal to add a liter of oil every 5,000 kilometres. From time to time the yellow oil light comes on, once after 7,500 kilometers, the other time (in winter) after 10,000 kilometers”.
Engines and powertrain
Aside from the car’s oil consumption, owners are quite satisfied with their Tiguan’s engine and drive. In most cases, this affects the 1.4 TSI and 1.5 TSI petrol engines, both of which are equipped with cylinder deactivation. The owner of such a 1.4 TSI writes about it: “The car has a cylinder deactivation that works well, but I had to get used to it for the first 1,000 kilometers. I still feel the change a little each time. With the more modern 1.5 TSI, the transition between two- and four-cylinder mode seems to be smoother, describes the driver of such a copy. “Cylinder deactivation is very smooth; it comes on very quickly and you only notice it when you know it’s on and when you look at the dash.”
Judging by user and owner reviews, the Tiguan seems to be an excellent alternative to the Touran, Golf and Passat variant. It convinces by the space, the tranquility and the comfort of the seats, although the latter two depend a bit on the engine and the version chosen. The autonomous emergency braking system could intervene less forcefully and the finish could be better in points, but below the line, daily users seem satisfied.