2018 Volkswagen Tiguan
2018 Volkswagen Tiguan Overview
Hoping to rebuild confidence among consumers, Volkswagen has launched its second redesigned SUV product this year, the 2018 Tiguan. On the outside, the all-new Tiguan shares several design cues with its recently launched sibling, the 2018 Atlas; these include the grille, headlamps, and taillights.
Versatility is key in this segment, and the new Tiguan tackles the challenge by adding 10.6 inches in length, giving it up to 58 percent more cargo space than the current model. It also includes a 50/50 split third row third-row seat, which is suitable for children on entry-level trims with front-wheel drive (FWD). The new VW also makes the third row available on models with VW 4Motion all-wheel drive (AWD) technology. The 40/20/40 split second-row bench can recline and slide seven inches fore and aft. Both rows fold down to create a maximum of 65.7 cubic feet of cargo room.
Powered by an updated 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbocharged TSI engine with 184 horsepower and 221 lb.–ft. of torque, which is matched to an eight-speed automatic transmission, the compact SUV should gain an EPA estimated fuel economy of 22 miles per gallon (mpg) in the city and 27 mpg on the highway. Tiguans equipped with 4Motion will earn just one mpg less in the city. At the launch, I averaged 26.1 mpg in the SEL Premium AWD. The 2.0-liter turbo did struggle on inclines and there was some turbo lag. Of course the elevation certainly didn’t help.
Active Control, a unique feature with 4Motion, also allows more intrepid drivers to chose among four driving modes—On-road, Snow, Off-road, and Custom Off-road. To fine tune the On-road experience further, four additional modes—Normal, Sport, Eco, and Custom—can be engaged at the push of a button. I tested the Sport mode along curvy mountain climbs and descents. While it improved handling via tighter steering, it didn’t offer a noticeable increase in power.
With four available trim levels, S, SE, SEL, and SEL Premium, there’s quite a gap between standard features from the base to the top-of-the-line model, amounting for a difference in price of more than $10,000. The base model offers halogen headlights, LED daytime running lights and taillights, foglights with cornering function, heated exterior mirrors with integrated turn-signal indicators, and 17-inch wheels.
Meanwhile, the SEL Premium comes with 19-inch wheels, LED headlights with the Adaptive Front-lighting System, rain-sensing wipers, and power-folding exterior mirrors with puddle lights. For added convenience, the SEL Premium also includes the foot-activated, hands-free Easy Open power liftgate.
Standard creature comforts include a multi-function steering wheel, cloth seats with a nice quilted pattern, cruise control, a 6.5-inch capacitive touchscreen w/AM/FM radio and one USB port, Bluetooth, VW Car-Net App-Connect, and the MIB II infotainment system.
The SEL Premium adds a panoramic sunroof, an eight-inch touchscreen, heated leather seats and steering wheel, a power driver seat with memory, keyless start, and the Fender premium audio system.
Safety features on all 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan models include a rearview camera and Automatic Post-Collision Braking System, which is unique to VW. The Premium SEL adds an overhead view camera, an Active Blind Spot Monitor w/ Rear Traffic Alert, Lane Departure Warning, and Park Distance Control.
Like the Atlas, the Tiguan bears the new face of VW. With a bolder design on the outside, it also improves on essentials with more room and technology.
Pricing starts at $24,595.