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Volkswagen Tiguan Review 2022: Top Choice among Compact Crossovers

Image Source: RoClickMag / Shutterstock

An infusion of technology enhances the 2022 Tiguan, while also preserving the roomy interiors of this compact crossover. The latest iteration of the 2022 Volkswagen Tiguan competes fiercely in the highly competitive automotive segment of compact SUVs, facing off against popular models such as the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, and Hyundai Tucson.

For 2022, the Tiguan has received a refresh with updated styling both inside and out, along with technological enhancements across all trim levels. Volkswagen mentions that the Tiguan’s dimensions and wheelbase remain nearly unchanged, a positive aspect as its spacious second row makes it an ideal choice for families. Additionally, an optional third-row seating located in the cargo area is now available on Tiguan models equipped with front-wheel drive.

While other SUVs are embracing unconventional designs, the Tiguan stays true to its straightforward design approach. Standing out amidst its competitors, the Tiguan maintains its simple yet elegant design. Despite being deemed as potentially dull, the Tiguan exudes its charm with a noticeable crease running along its body and wide doors that facilitate easy entry and exit. The front end has been revised, with standard LED headlights and a new optional LED center light strip adding a distinctive touch to the Tiguan’s appearance during nighttime. The range of new alloy wheel designs now spans from 17 to 20 inches. At the rear, the “Tiguan” badge has been repositioned to the center with a redesigned font to align with the rest of the VW SUV lineup.

Equipped with a turbo-4 engine producing 184-hp, the Tiguan is paired with an 8-speed automatic transmission. When paired with all-wheel drive, the Tiguan feels more spirited in the second gear, although it lacks in initial acceleration whether with front-wheel or all-wheel drive. While the Tiguan might not excel in acceleration, its ride quality is undoubtedly impressive. The softly tuned suspension might lead to some body roll around corners, but it enhances comfort and composure during regular driving scenarios. Although the steering feels too light, Volkswagen has introduced the option to switch between drive modes (Normal, Sport, and Custom) on front-wheel drive Tiguans for 2022. The custom mode allows adjustments such as increased steering weight while maintaining a normal and efficient engine mapping.

The estimated fuel economy for the Tiguan stands at 23 mpg city, 30 highway, and 26 combined for front-wheel drive models, earning an average rating of 5 out of 10. All-wheel drive models fall slightly behind with figures of 22/29/25 mpg, further dropping to 21/28/24 mpg for the R-Line all-wheel drive variant. These figures place the Tiguan in close competition with its rivals (excluding hybrid models), except for the Volkswagen Taos compact crossover that boasts a superior 31 combined mpg for front-wheel drive versions.

Although the 2022 Tiguan is yet to undergo full crash testing by IIHS or NHTSA, the 2021 model secured a “Top Safety Pick” award from IIHS. Base models come equipped with automatic emergency braking and blind-spot monitors as standard, with an optional IQ.Drive package offering additional features such as adaptive cruise control, active lane control, and steering assistance, combined with blind-spot monitors. Higher trim levels offer features like automatic high beams, an automatic parking system, a surround-view camera system, and road sign recognition.

Internally, SE and above models feature haptic climate controls that may require some getting used to, but they enhance the aesthetics of the lower part of the center console. An 8.0-inch digital cockpit display is standard, while the SEL R-Line boasts a more customizable and higher resolution 10.0-inch display. In terms of upholstery, the SE variant offers synthetic leather in tan, while the SEL R-Line provides genuine leather in black, grey, and brown.

The Tiguan’s generous rear seating and ample cargo space make it a practical choice for families. Positioned on the larger side of the compact segment, the Tiguan’s size advantage is evident, as highlighted by its spacious rear seating and cargo capacity.

Rear seat legroom measures 36.6 inches for front-wheel drive models accommodating the optional third row, and 38.7 inches for all-wheel drive models. Despite the lower figure for front-wheel drive Tiguans, the rear seat offers abundant leg and headroom for adults. In contrast, the third-row seating, exclusively available for front-wheel drive models, is small and primarily suited for children on short journeys.

Cargo capacity totals 33.0 cubic feet behind the second row, expanding to 65.3 cubic feet with the seats folded in front-wheel drive models. With all-wheel drive, these figures further expand to 37.6 cubic feet and 73.4 cubic feet respectively. Although comparable to the Toyota RAV4’s cargo space of 37.5 cubic feet, the Tiguan falls slightly short compared to the Hyundai Tucson (38.7 cubic feet) and the Honda CR-V (39.2 cubic feet).

The enhanced standard features of the 2022 Tiguan offer significant value to potential buyers. The base S model starts at $27,190 and includes an updated 8.0-inch digital cockpit display, LED headlights and taillights, heated side mirrors, a 6.5-inch touchscreen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility, heated front seats, and the aforementioned safety features. Priced just $750 more than its predecessor, the S model provides a compelling package.

The SE model, priced at $30,690, is the preferred choice for most buyers according to Volkswagen. This trim level includes an enhanced 8.0-inch multimedia screen with wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, a wireless charging pad, power tailgate, power driver seat, and the IQ.Drive safety package.

For an additional $2,800, the SE-R Line Black offers extra sporty elements, ambient lighting, a panoramic sunroof, and an R-Line steering wheel with additional touch controls on both sides. The adjustment of these controls might require a short period of acclimatization, especially for volume controls.

At $37,790, the top-tier SEL R-Line comes fully loaded with premium features such as 20-inch alloy wheels, leather upholstery, a heated steering wheel, and ventilated front seats. It is also the only trim level equipped with a larger 10-inch digital cockpit display, boasting higher resolution and enhanced customization compared to the smaller screen.

Upon its initial release, the Tiguan left a distinctive mark as the first small crossover to feature a standard turbo 4-cylinder engine, offering slightly more room and an enjoyable driving experience. Subsequently, Volkswagen has refined this successful formula, resulting in a second-generation Tiguan that excels in various aspects. With the 2022 Tiguan, Volkswagen continues to enhance its features with improved safety mechanisms and cutting-edge technology, solidifying its exceptional value in the market.

Image Source: RoClickMag / Shutterstock

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