I've had just a week to enjoy my new Tiguan - so this is more a first impressions review, but I have to say so far I'm hugely impressed... mostly.
Alright, let's talk about the elephant in the room. Despite loading up with every option available my car has a glaring and unexpected omission. With the sound system off, there's no clock in the cabin. Even when equipped with VW's Active Info Display (virtual dashboard) offering a never-ending array of options, configurations and information, it seems showing the actual time of day was just a step too far and VW had opted not to include it. No matter - we press on and hope for a software update.
Coming from a 162TSI Skoda Superb I was expecting to walk into a dealership and pick up a 162TSI Tiguan R-Line. I think they look fantastic and it's a terrific engine. But on the test drive around our local area, the combination of 20-inch wheels and speed bumps just didn't gel, so we jumped into the 132TSI variant instead and we were instantly sold. Sure you miss out on that extra oomph but the more comfortable ride (and in my opinion the better seats) in the 132TSI make up for it.
The technology is fantastic, but not overwhelming. The Active Info Display, self-park capabilities and 360 degree camera are standouts. While I intended to tick all the options I have to say I was a little surprised some of the features that were standard in the Skoda were options in the VW, like adaptive cruise and powered driver's seat to name a couple. With the Luxury, Sound and Vision and Driver's Assistance packs added there's nothing missing (except the aforementioned clock) and we're enjoying our first car equipped with a sunroof. But at mid-$50k it's certainly not a cheap car in this configuration.
The drive so far is lovely. Smooth, quiet and with none of the DSG lag some reviewers have mentioned. The cabin is a very nice place to sit, simple and well thought out with that familiar VW European class. My wife and I have our own configurations saved to our individual keys, so whenever I jump in I know the car is ready to go just the way I like it.
It's a lot smaller than the Superb and that's something we'll have to get used to, but there's enough room for the four of us with luggage and my kids haven't complained so far. The rear tray tables, leather upholstery and the sunroof have kept them happy. It's also our first SUV and while sitting higher takes some adjustment, I've been impressed with how car-like the Tiguan handles.
After sealing the deal I had instant buyer's remorse - wondering if I'd test-driven enough cars and second-guessing myself on ruling out Skoda's Kodiaq, but now that it's in the driveway I'm very happy with my decision. It's not cheap, but so far the Tiguan has been a great choice.