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HomeDRIVENVolkswagen Tiguan 110kW TSI R-Line

Volkswagen Tiguan 110kW TSI R-Line

A Magnificent Makeover |

In 2019, the VW Tiguan managed to bag the title of VW’s best-seller in Mzansi. Fast forward a couple of years, and it has received an update that has made it a more attractive package than it has ever been. 

The Tiguan has enjoyed healthy sales over the years, thanks to its ability to appeal to a broad demographic with its tasteful styling and generous specs. However, there have been recent developments in the crossover segment, including new entries from Haval and from within VW itself, which have shaken up the game a bit. Therefore, with VW having recently dropped an update to the Tiguan, we took it upon ourselves to see whether it still punches above its weight.

Good Looks? Check!

I have always been a fan of the Tiguan. It is beautifully proportioned and practical, being neither too big nor too small. Innovative styling and modern highlights, such as LED lights front and back with DRL signatures, give the car a fresh look. The new Tiguan is available in three trim levels: the base Tiguan, midrange Life, and the range-topping R-line. As optioned on our review unit, the R trim came with more aggressive front and rear bumpers, giving it a sporty presence with serious road appeal. It also comes with optional 18” alloys that tie everything together beautifully.

Cool Cabin? Check! 

My love for the Tiguan’s execution extends to the cabin. The design language looks clean and tasteful, with an obvious bias to ergonomics. The dash is dominated by a vibrant 8” touchscreen infotainment system which comes replete with Bluetooth, wireless Android Auto and Apple Car Play. It works well with the crisp sound system, which handled my heavy bass playlist rather well. The climate control section now comes with touch-sensitive buttons, which look futuristic despite my misgivings about this trend. The driver faces a configurable 10.25” digital instrument cluster nestled behind a leather-wrapped multi-function steering wheel.

The cabin not only looks good but feels great too. Typical German build quality is the order of the day here, with the cabin being devoid of rattles and creaks. The choice of materials lends it a premium feel, with soft-touch materials being used for the significant touchpoints and leather for the seats. The cabin is relatively spacious, with the rear accommodating two adults comfortably. Any more, and it becomes a tight squeeze. 

Rear occupants get treated to a USB C port, a 12V socket and two cup holders in the centre armrest. There are ISOFIX points in the rear seats for those who, like myself, need car seats. The seating position is comfortable, with the driver’s seat having excellent visibility all around the vehicle, which also helps when driving in more restricted spaces. I also noted that the cabin is well insulated, given how easy it was for my family to converse, even at highway speeds.

Though the 615 l of boot space (1,655 l with the rear seat folded) is not industry-leading, I found it sufficient for my needs, even with all the Christmas shopping I did during the Festive Season. Unfortunately, for my wallet, the cargo area proved to be quite capable of accommodating a sleigh’s worth of Christmas presents! The quick electric tailgate helped ease the pain slightly, though.

The Tiguan comes with a host of safety features to complement the overall driving experience. You can have your car with front and rear parking sensors, reverse camera, driver fatigue detections, side assist rear cross-traffic alert, lane-keeping assist, and adaptive cruise control, among others, ensuring that it is well-equipped for the demands of 2022 motoring.

Comfortable Driving? Check, Check!

The heart and soul of the 110TSI is a 1.4-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol unit married to a six-speed DSG dual-clutch transmission. This mechanical union produces 110 kW of power and 250 Nm of torque. Unlike the other Tiguan variants, the 110 does not come with the 4MOTION all-wheel-drive system, making do instead with just the front wheels. 

During my time with the 110, I found the DSG victim to the typical dual-clutch hesitation when pulling off from a stationary position. As a result, driving in bumper to bumper traffic, merging into intersections or trying to perform a U-turn induces slight frustration as the gearbox figures out what it has to do. 

Once the transmission locks in, though, the 110 tackles the road with verve – although it did have to work a bit harder to get a move on when I had the car loaded with my entire family. For those who crave more spirited driving, you can switch the gear lever to manual and take full advantage of that snappy DSG transmission via the steering-mounted paddles. And while the light steering feel is not great for sporty driving, it makes for a comfortable daily driving experience. My average fuel consumption never climbed far north of the manufacturer’s claimed 7.7 l/100 km, which is a delight in a country where fuel prices keep heading skywards. The 110 is also rated for a 1,800 kg braked towing capacity.

Last Word

While the Tiguan may be up against some stiff competition, it still manages to punch above its weight, proving just how excellent this offering is. Besides benefitting from the appeal of a German badge, the Tiguan is well equipped and engineered to make it a great daily vehicle. It is modern and yet simple enough to age well, making it a car that will be happily at home in your garage for some time to come. 

Report by BRYAN KAYAVHU | Images © Volkswagen South Africa

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