TIGUAN RANGE COMPLETED: Volkswagen has finally added diesel power and all-wheel drive to its Tiguan. There's also a TSI version that uses the Golf GTI engine. Image: Sean Parker
Port Elizabeth - Seven months after Volkswagen launched the second generation Tiguan in South Africa, the automaker has added four new derivatives to its line-up including two new engines and all-wheel drive.
It has also added the Golf GTI's engine to the SUV.
Sean Parker drove the new derivatives in VW's South African home province of the Eastern Cape, here's all you need to know about the SUV's engines.
What's the diesel like? In a word: brilliant. The 2.0-litre TDI is available in three outputs: 81kW/240Nm for the Comfortline model, a mid-spec model with 105kW/340Nm and 130kW/380Nm for the Highline model.
The latter two derivatives feature all-wheel drive, though you’ll have to change your own gears in the 81kW model; the 105Kw and 130Kw models use the superb seven-speed DSG ‘box.
Pottering around Port Elizabeth in a 130kW version, it becomes apparent just how smooth the engine is.
It covers a 0-100 km/h sprint in 8.3 seconds runs out of puff at 207km/h. It’s remarkable how swift the modern diesels feel and they’ll happily run at 120km/h while the rev counter sits at 1750r/min.
Claimed fuel consumption is rated at 6.4l/100km for the higher output derivative.
Is it a Tiguan GTI then?
Not quite, the 2.0-litre engine from the Golf GTI produces the same amount of power 162Kw/ 350Nm and even has launch control (which I tried out a few times). It is only available with all-wheel drive and power is transferred via a standard seven-speed DSG gearbox.
*Note: The #VrrPhaa 'sound' relates to the Golf GTI's engine note at around 6000 r/min. South African Transport Minister Dipuo Peters famously made the sound during a TV interview about road safety.
The automaker says the Tiguan will gallop from 0-100km/h in 6.5 seconds reach a top speed of 220km/h. It feels rapid when swapping cogs via the steering-wheel mounted paddles and while the four-pot burble and failed to excite my senses.
The ride on the Tiguan is excellent and a special mention must be made of the exceptional bump absorption over most surfaces.
But it still feels like an SUV, and the steering doesn’t come close to the directness of the Golf’s. That being said if you’re keen on a GTI but need the bigger boot and higher ground clearance then the 162Kw version is an excellent alternative. Spec it with the R-Line pack for even more street cred and some VrrPhaa.
Anything else you should know?
While my test drive of the Tiguan was limited to tarred roads, Volkswagen says the new all-wheel drive system, also known as 4MOTION, constantly monitors driving conditions and reacts to the slightest wheel slip, delivering extra traction to the wheels with the most grip.
At the heart of the system is an inter-axle differential - a fifth generation Haldex coupling - which shares power between the front and rear axle, sending it where it's most needed.
All 4MOTION versions offer 10mm higher ground clearance (201mm instead of 191mm). In addition, the Tiguan can be ordered with an 'Off-road' package with a special off-road front end that provides an approach angle of 25.6 degrees instead of the usual 18.3 degrees.
Another nifty feature I didn’t get to test is the new 4MOTION Active Control. A rotary/push-button switch located on the centre console allows the driver to activate one of four driving modes: two road profiles: 'Onroad' or 'Snow' and two off-road profiles: 'Offroad' (automatic setting of off-road parameters) or 'Offroad Individual' (variable settings).
Standout optional extras include LED-mid Headlights package, R-Line exterior package with 19" Sebring and 20" Suzuka alloy wheels (which 80% of buyers spec their cars with), head-up display and a parallel parking assistance with rear view camera.
1.4 TSI 92kW Trendline Manual - R384 100
1.4 TSI 92kW Comfortline Manual - R425 300
1.4 TSI 110kW Comfortline DSG - R465 000
2.0 TDI 81kW Comfortline Manual - R469 500
2.0 TDI 105kW Comfortline 4MOTION DSG - R523 800
2.0 TSI 162kW Highline 4MOTION DSG - R542 200
2.0 TDI 130kW Highline 4MOTION DSG - R549 500
A 5-year or 90 000km service plan, 3-year or 120 000km warranty and a 12-year anti-corrosion warranty are standard across the range and a service is scheduled for every 15 000km.
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