Monday, May 8, 2017

Used Car Review - Volkswagen Tiguan (2013-2016)

Another SUV from a European brand gets the spotlight.

2013-2016 Volkswagen Tiguan


Alongside Toyota which dominated the Philippine market, we had Volkswagen selling the likes of the Beetle and Kombi during the 60s and the 70s before pulling out a decade later. The Ramos administration had some car manufacturers set foot (and for some, return) in the country with VW being one of them, only to close down ten years later. In 2013, the Ayala Group (which also has an ownership on Honda and Isuzu) brought back the German marque to our humble but growing market.

Slotting under the Touareg in terms of price and size, the Tiguan started life as a concept car displayed at the 2006 LA Auto Show and its production counterpart the following year in Germany. For those who are wondering what the name meant, the word Tiguan is a portmanteau of Tiger and Leguan (German for Iguana) and was the winning name sponsored by a German car magazine.

Alongside the Touareg luxury SUV, Touran MPV, and Jetta sedan, the Tiguan compact SUV were the first four models to be launched in VW's comeback. With a diesel engine and a basic interior befitting a mid level rival, it became a decent seller for the brand.

Value and Costs
Since this vehicle isn't that much of a volume seller plus having a short run of barely three years, used examples can be had for P1,100,000, 50% less than what is priced brand new.

Maintenance wise, VWs aren't that expensive to maintain compared to several high end German brands, they are just priced at that upper scale of the spectrum. If you want this vehicle, go for the diesel rather than the rare TSI.

Exterior and Interior
What the Philippine market got is basically the updated model, available since 2011. Just think of this as a baby Touareg, placed in a shrinking machine. Sure, styling may not be loud but it is more than enough.

Going inside, you'll be treated to an expanse space of passenger room good for five people. While the interior is somewhat bare for its price (the base model gives you fabric seats, though), a high quality interior greets you, a strength of German brands. Starting the car is possible via a smart key push button, whose ignition is situated near the shifter.

Shared with other vehicles in the VW group (such as from Audi) is this R4 2.0 which has 140hp at 4,200rpm and 320Nm at 1,750rpm. Sure it may have ordinary numbers but is more than adequate for this SUV.

Driving Impressions
Just like a tiger, it feels at home when driven on the open road especially that it eats curves for lunch. Using this as a city driver is fine but you have to live with its suspension absorbent (contributing for a smooth ride) characteristic and a wide turning radius for such car.

Want a German SUV that is both easy on the pocket and low profile, then this is the one. Expect to dig deeper and load yourself with lots of patience for this vehicle.

The Good:
  • Excellent levels of refinement
  • High quality interior
  • Diesel
The Bad:
  • Limited units in the market
  • Basic interior
  • Noisy
The Pick: 2.0 TDI

Engine: 1,968cc R4 I4 diesel
Power: 140hp @ 4,200rpm
Torque: 320Nm @ 1,750rpm
Fuel Consumption: 8-10km/L (city), 10-12km/L (highway) (*estimated and varies)
Transmission: 6-speed automatic
Suspension: Front McPherson strut, rear multilink

Price (New): P1,749,000-P2,426,000
Price (Now): P1,100,000
On Sale: 2013-2016
Rivals: Ford Escape, Honda CR-V, Hyundai Tucson, Kia Sportage, Mazda CX-5, Nissan X-Trail, Subaru Forester, Toyota RAV4

Volkswagen BGC - (02) 558-5888

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