4.4 out of 5 4.4
Parkers overall rating: 4.4 out of 5 4.4

Sets the standard for mid-sized SUVs – but at a price

Volkswagen Tiguan (16 on) - rated 4.4 out of 5
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At a glance

New price £28,585 - £47,210
Lease from new From £290 p/m View lease deals
Used price £12,625 - £45,570
Used monthly cost From £315 per month
Fuel Economy 28.2 - 176.6 mpg
Road tax cost £130 - £490
Insurance group 11 - 36 How much is it to insure?
New

PROS

  • Excellent interior space
  • High quality interior
  • Lots of engine options      
  • Very comfortable

CONS

  • Expensive compared with rivals
  • Touch-sensitive buttons a pain
  • Many rivals better value
  • Not much fun to drive

Volkswagen Tiguan rivals

Written by Murray Scullion on

Is the Volkswagen Tiguan any good?

If sales and popularity are anything to go by, then absolutely. The Tiguan has established itself as a very accomplished mid-sized family SUV. But that's no surprise, given that Volkswagen’s been constantly refining its formula since the first Tiguan launched in 2008, and those refinements mean that the 2021 Tiguan is one of the most practical, comfortable and high-quality cars of its kind.

Consider choice – the range covers everything from low-powered entry-level models to high-end luxurious versions, and even a high-performance model. All are ideal for families, with lots of room and a five-star Euro NCAP score. Essentially, the Tiguan takes the brilliant, classy package that buyers love about the Golf and Passat, and translates it into the incredibly popular SUV body style.

Of course, any compact SUV on sale today has a big job ahead of it because there are so many models to compete against. Not only do the SEAT Ateca and Skoda Karoq offer the same engines and technology at a cheaper price, but hugely popular and accomplished cars such as the Nissan Qashqai, Mazda CX-5, Peugeot 3008 and Citroen C5 Aircross compete for your hard-earned money.

Volkswagen’s positioned it close to the top of the market in the same sort of ‘almost-premium’ area as the rest of its cars. This means top-end Tiguans compete with desirable offerings like the Volvo XC40 or Audi Q3. You can read more about our top SUV picks here.

Read the Volkswagen Tiguan verdict

What's it like inside?

The Tiguan is very much like its lower-set siblings, the VW Golf and Passat. It shares those car’s engines and interior fittings, but it also shares their relaxed driving manners, excellent build quality and generally refined ambiance.

There's plenty of new tech to the Tiguan, with Volkswagen’s very latest infotainment system, as well as digital dials and new touch-sensitive controls for the interior. That’s not forgetting IQ Lights, high-tech adaptive LED headlights to make night driving much easier.

The interior’s really spacious thanks to the car’s long wheelbase (the distance between the wheels) and relatively bulky body. There’s lots of space for a family in here, though if five seats aren’t quite enough VW does sell the larger Tiguan Allspace, which has seven seats as standard. Better yet is how the Tiguan feels inside. There’s a pervading sense of quality, with satisfyingly well-damped switchgear and generally excellent material quality all round.

Read more on the Volkswagen Tiguan interior

What's it like to drive?

Petrol options span 130hp right up to 320hp in the range-topping R, while diesels go from 150hp to 200hp. Depending on your engine choice, the Tiguan will come with either a six-speed manual gearbox or seven-speed dual-clutch automatic, while some models can have four-wheel drive, too. Don’t be fooled – the Tiguan is no off-roader.

As you'd imagine, the Tiguan puts in an assured performance on the road, with all models majoring on hushed refinement and a smooth ride on all but the largest wheels. Manual versions are blessed with a smooth gearchange, while DSG automatics are efficient and unobtrusive in use.

Read more on how the Volkswagen Tiguan drives

What models and trims are available?

Base models are simply called Tiguan, with higher trims including Life, Active, Elegance and R-Line available. You can upscale their equipment rosters with several options including a panoramic glass roof, an adaptive digital instrument display and a high-quality Dynaudio stereo system.

As you’d expect, the Volkswagen Tiguan is bristling with standard and optional technology. There’s a raft of electronic safety equipment including adaptive cruise control, emergency city braking and LED lights front and rear.

Volkswagen’s also further honed its Active Control system allowing you to tailor your on-road driving for suppleness (Comfort) or firmness (Sport) depending on your personal tastes, as well as Snow and Off-Road modes when conditions are more challenging. Finally, depending on variant you can specify Travel Assist – a combination of adaptive cruise control and active lane-keeping aids which can drive the Tiguan semi-autonomously on motorways.

What else should I know?

The Tiguan was given a real boost when Volkswagen gave it a mid-life faceift in 2020. Far from being just some re-jigging of trim levels and some new paint, the Tiguan’s facelift was pretty significant, giving it a new look inspired by the larger Touareg and introducing both a plug-in hybrid model and a hot R performance variant.

These two models give the Tiguan the chops to compete with almost any model in this category – from fuel-sipping economy specials right up to some of our favourite performance SUVs.

Dealwatch special

Our leasing partner, ZenAuto is offering the Volkswagen Tiguan for £290 per month. The usual terms and conditions apply.*

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Is this the SUV to go for? Read on to find out in the full Parkers Volkswagen Tiguan review, or click here to jump straight to our thoughts on its practicality, interior, running costs or driving dynamics.

Volkswagen Tiguan rivals

Other Volkswagen Tiguan models: