Flash Drive: 2016 Volkswagen Tiguan SEL Off-Road 2ltr TDi

Since its introduction in 2007, the Tiguan has done a good job for Volkswagen selling over 2.8 million, and over 100,000 of those were in the UK. But it's time for the Mk1 to step aside and let the new, fresher, crisper and longer Mk2 take over the reigns.

Old and new Tiguan...

Overall, this new version has an increased wheelbase of 77mm and is 60mm longer in length, which may not sound like much but it does make a difference to its ride.  Not only that but the luggage space is now increased to 520 litres, and if you slide the rear seats forward you then have 615 litres, folding them down completely gives you a whopping 1,655 litres. 

 

VW reckon the best seller in the UK will be the 150ps, 2ltr diesel, around 90% in fact, so that's what I opted for, and of course the 'Off-Road' version.

Getting behind the wheel and you are presented with a rather smart dash with all its knobs and switches within easy reach. There are a lot of things to like about the new Tiguan technology wise, but the first thing that made me smile was the seats - they're incredibly comfy, and more importantly for me at least, they're all long in the base, and that goes for the rears too. Due to the new platform, rear passenger have a further 29mm extra knee room over its predecessor. 

On the road, although comfortable, agile and quiet, I wouldn't say that it's particularly sporty, it has a certain amount of punch, but it ain't no rocket ship, which I suppose fits its role in life. I have no doubt that it will fulfill its role as family barge with aplomb.

Driving along the sweeping A roads around Harrogate, my first impressions of the new Tiguan was that it's very quiet, both from a road noise and engine perspective, it also held the corners well.  I didn't noticed the 7-speed DSG gearbox working, which means it did a good job, and after a good 1/2 hour flinging it around the more narrow roads the steering held up well too.

Apart from a short dirt track, I didn't manage get its tyres dirty, but I'm intrigued to find out what it will be like off the beaten track - nothing too extreme, obviously.  Having said that, the 'Off-Road option does have 200mm ground clearance and comes equipped with 4Motion 4 wheel drive system and a different front that offers an approach angle of 25.6 degrees instead of the usual 18.3.  A departure angle of 24.7 and ramp angle of 20 degrees is standard throughout, so maybe it will be able to handle some 'extreme' terrain.

Also noteworthy is the impressive 2.5-tonne towing capacity, which will come in handy if you're into riding, sailing or lugging a caravan around.

If I'm going to be grumpy about anything, I dislike all digital dashes, although they're very flexible when it comes to displays, they lack soul.  Also, the interior door panel, right at the top where you rest your elbow, well it's square and uncomfy - I didn't like that.

Overall though it was a nice car to drive with plenty of space for family or friends, it's not bad looking either, in a clean and crisp kind of way.