Noticeable changes should enhance the Tiguan’s reputation

Roseville, CA,- If the Volkswagen Tiguan didn’t interest you in the past, perhaps it’s time to take a second look.

The Tiguan, a compact sport utility vehicle, is fully redesigned for 2018 and the changes are quite noticeable. The compact SUV class has widened and grown in stature since Tiguan joined the game nine years ago. A redesign that has generally been applauded should enhance the Tiguan’s reputation.

Notable changes also took place a year ago at its Mexican plant when a turbocharged engine was introduced and Volkswagen dropped the SE and R-Line trims, replacing them in the lineup with the Wolfsburg edition and Sport models.

But two things that didn’t change in 2017 for the little brother of the Volkswagen Touareg are size and gas mileage. The Tiguan was one of the smallest compact SUVs and its gas mileage (20-24 mpg) needed improving. That wasn’t a good thing for a manufacturer that was in an uphill climb to win back buyers, thanks to irregularities in its internal emissions testing.

2018 Volkswagen Tiguan

* Performance: turbocharged 2.0-liter, four-cylinder, 184 horsepower
* Mileage estimate: 21-27 mph
* Price estimate: $26,400 to $39,900
* Warranty: 6 years/72,000 miles; drivetrain: 6 years/72,000 miles; roadside assistance: 3 years/36,000; corrosion: 7 years/100,00

However, the German automaker hopes the 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan helps repair some of the damage. It’s certainly a plus that the Tiguan possesses the top bumper-to-bumper warranty in the segment – a 6-year/72,000-mile limited warranty. The warranty is fully transferable to any subsequent owners.

The new Tiguan sits atop a new platform and is longer by 10 inches and roomier than practically every compact SUV. The Tiguan is capable of seating seven people, a rarity in the compact SUV category that it shares with only the Nissan Rogue. However, also know that the Tiguan’s optional third row seating is the smallest on the market — with 3.5 fewer inches of legroom than even the Rogue. The Tiguan is also the heaviest compact SUV (3,777 pounds) in the class.

The lone engine offered with the Tiguan is a turbocharged 2.0-liter, four cylinder that generates 184 horsepower and 221 pound-feet of torque. While more powerful than some of the competition, it’s a stretch to say the Tiguan delivers good performance in all driving situations. It can labor on hills, doesn’t possess great passing speed in freeway situations, and lags when it first gets going – 0-60 mph in 8.6 seconds. Gas mileage has increased over last year, now ranging between 21-27 mpg.

The Tiguan makes up for its performance issues by providing a comfortable and quiet ride, traits that have always been its strengths.

Other than a third row that that’s only suited for the kiddos, the interior is very good. There’s ample leg and head room for people in the first two rows. The second row has reclining and sliding seats that will please its occupants. The two-row Tiguan models offer 37.6 cubic feet of cargo room behind the second row. With a third row, there’s barely any cargo space.

We love that when you have your arms full and hands aren’t available, one has the option of gently kicking under the rear bumper and the cargo area opens. And when removing cargo from the Tiguan, press the button on the open tailgate first and it will automatically close when it senses you (and the key) are walking away from the vehicle.

Thanks to its redesign, the 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan addressed several of its previous shortcomings and makes itself more appealing to folks shopping for a compact SUV.