2017 Tiguan gets new trim levels, additional features

SHARE 2017 Tiguan gets new trim levels, additional features
SHARE 2017 Tiguan gets new trim levels, additional features

Based on Volkswagen’s small-car platform, the Tiguan is one of the more stylish and luxurious compact SUVs in its segment. I find Tiguan to be peppy and elegant, but it’s not as agile or nimble as Mazda’s CX-5.

While many of Tiguan’s competitors have been transformed into crossover utility vehicles, Tiguan remains more traditional, sitting tall, providing its drivers with a commanding view of the road ahead.

That is about to change when an all-new, sleeker Tiguan debuts for 2018. It has been a long run for this first-generation Tiguan, which debuted in the U.S. for the 2009 model year. For 2017, the Volkswagen Tiguan does receive new standard features and a couple of new trim levels.

Tiguan’s lineup now consists of the S ($24,995), Wolfsburg ($30,095), Sport ($32,605) and SEL ($34,500). The old R-Line has been replaced by the new Wolfsburg, and the old SE has been replaced with the new Sport.

All models feature a lively 200-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. No other engine or transmission choices are available.

All models can be had with either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive ($1,975 option). Fuel economy for both FWD and AWD models is a disappointing 20/24 mpg city/highway, and premium unleaded fuel is recommended.

The base S model comes very well equipped, including 16-inch alloy wheels, power and heated side mirrors, automatic headlights, back-up camera, power driver’s seat, heated front seats, keyless entry with push-button starting, 40/20/40 split-sliding and reclining back seat and more.

New for 2017, the base S model now features Volkswagen’s Composition Media infotainment system, which includes a 6.3-inch touch screen, AM/FM/HD satellite radio, CD with USB and aux-in, Bluetooth and VW Car-Net App-Connect technology supporting Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink.

Tiguan’s cabin accommodates four adults or a family of five. The seats offer plenty of support and comfort. I like that the sliding rear seats can be moved closer to the front seats when extra cargo space is needed or when it’s necessary to reach a small child.

Tiguan’s cabin features high-quality materials and excellent craftsmanship, but the style is a bit dated. Cargo space is smaller than many competitors’. There are only 23.8 cubic feet behind the rear seats, and that increases to just 56.1 cubic feet with the rear seats folded.

On the road, Tiguan does provide drivers with a welcoming, commanding view of the road. Its four-cylinder engine is responsive and peppy.

However, I did not like the operation of my tester’s six-speed automatic transmission. At times, it struggled to find the right gear, and it frequently was in too high a gear when cruising around 40 mph, which caused the engine to lug around 1,000 rpm.

From a safety standpoint, Tiguan lacks some of the advanced safety systems offered by its competitors, and it has low crash-test ratings.

With a totally new Tiguan on the horizon, you may be able to strike a deal for a 2017 model. If not, I suggest waiting for the 2018 model.

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