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17 Mar 2017 | Text by Sabrina Lee, Photos by Low Fai Ming
In Tig-Top Shape
The all new Tiguan sport utility vehicle looks upbeat, sporty and is ready for anything, including Singapore's jam-packed urban jungle.
Yes it may be heavier than a hatchback or sedan, but it also comes with advantages like a higher seating position, a better view of the road and, of course, the inherent space and flexibility that comes with any SUV that's worth its weight.
As VW aspires to be the biggest car producer in the world, the new Tiguan's format offers similar practicality but with more styling panache and mechanical power, which will probably see buyers beat a trail to its showrooms.
Enter the matrix
The latest generation Tiguan heralds the start of an onslaught of new SUV models from the people's car company, from big to small. It is the first VW SUV to be based on the company's latest game-changing MQB platform.
The principle is a simple one, and that's to build an architecture that's flexible enough to accommodate anything, from a supermini like a Polo to a compact SUV like the Tiguan. Currently, other VW cars that share the same MQB platform include the Golf, Sportsvan, and Passat Mk8.
Thanks to the wizardry of VW's MQB platform, the Tiguan is now wider, longer and has a longer wheelbase than the one it replaces. There is a 33mm reduction in height to 1,632mm, and at 4,486mm in length, it is 60mm longer than its predecessor.
The wheelbase is also extended to 2,681mm - a gain of 77mm. This translates to 29mm more kneeroom and more than enough space for three adults to sit comfortably.
Heart of a GTI
The Tiguan you see here is powered by a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine, which packs 220bhp, and sends 350Nm of torque to all four tyres. Because the Tiguan shares the same engine found in the pre-facelift Mk7 Golf GTI, those numbers will look familiar to some.
Despite the 492kg weight disadvantage compared to the GTI, the surge of power from the engine remains impressive. But this propulsion wouldn't be possible without the Tiguan's 4Motion all-wheel drive system and seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission drivetain, which enables this SUV to go from 0-100km/h in just 6.5 seconds, beating the base Porsche Macan by 0.4 seconds.
For the most part, it's a happy marriage. There's a trace of turbo lag off the line, but once up and running, the dual-clutch gearbox manages to keep the revs right in the sweet spot, and as usual with DSGs, up-and-down changes happen almost imperceptibly.
4-cylinder in-line 16-valve Turbocharged
162kW (217 bhp) / 6200 rpm
350 Nm / 4400 rpm
7-speed (A) DSG
Acceleration (0-100 km/h)