Chris Miller road tests and reviews the Volkswagen Tiguan 155TSI R-Line.
Volkswagen’s hugely popular Tiguan SUV has come in for a bit of make-over as it nears the end of its run, transforming an already capable car in to even more of a winner
The Tiguan has been around since 2008 is beginning to show its age in some respects, but in the latest 155TSI R-Line version, the power plant from a Golf GTi has been shoe horned into the engine bay making for an SUV that has plenty of power and is good fun to drive.
On test was the top of the line version that is priced at $44,990…hardly cheap, but it is packed full of features. Standard kit includes a unique body kit, 18-inch alloys, adaptive chassis control, a full leather interior and satellite navigation.
Under the bonnet of the 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 155TSI R-Line is the tried and tested 2.0 litre turbo 4-cylinder developing 155kW/280Nm. It’s hooked up to the ultra impressive and now ultra reliable 7-speed dual clutch automatic gearbox.
The engine is a sweet unit punching well above its weight and has no trouble hauling around the 1642kg Tiguan, and in combination with the DSG transmission will get you to 100km/h in just on 7.3 seconds.
Handling is class leading in the Volkswagen Tiguan which remains composed and predictable through corners. It feels agile and possesses a first class ride only upset but the worst pot holes.
The 4MOTION system has been upgraded and primarily drives the front wheels with only 10% of the drive sent to the rear wheels…that is until the system decides you need more traction when up to 100% of the power can be sent to the rear wheels.
It’s a clever but highly technical system that works through a multi-plate clutch system in combination with a pressure reservoir and the onboard computer.
It’s a miser at the fuel pump with the official consumption figure of 8.8 litres per 100km easily replicated, even with my heavy right foot.
Exterior styling is enhanced with the standard R-Line body kit giving the Tiguan a tough and purposeful look.
Inside is where the Volkswagen Tiguan is showing its age most. Large expanses of dark plastics across the dash don’t help and the smallish display screen could be better, it’s not particularly easy for fat fingered people to operate.
The digital info screen within the instrument cluster doesn’t look particularly modern either with its dot matrix type display. Still, there’s plenty to like about the interior, the chunky steering wheel, supremely comfortable seats and commanding all round view.
The Tiguan is a tardis inside, head room is plentiful and there is a stack of leg room in the back – a quirky feature for back seat passengers is the aircraft like fold out tray tables. The cargo area is huge and with the back seats folded flat there is a whopping 1510 litres of cargo space available.
ANCAP have awarded the Tiguan a five star safety rating thanks to six airbags, anti-slip regulation, electronic differential lock, electronic stabilisation program and engine braking control.
The Volkswagen Tiguan competes in a fiercely contested segment with plenty of stiff competition, particularly from the Mazda CX-5…but in the face of that the Tiguan still reigns supreme.
Class leading dynamics, strong, efficient drivetrains, brilliant build quality and genuine good looks mean the Tiguan is still the one to beat, even after 7 years on the market.
The new Tiguan, when it comes, has a lot to live up to, and undoubtedly has its rivals quivering in fear.
NUTS and BOLTS – 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan 155TSI R-Line
Engine: 2.0 litre turbo-petrol producing 155kW and 280Nm
Transmission: Seven-speed DSG automatic (only)
Safety: Five stars
Warranty: Three years
Price: From $44,990