We drove the Tiguan Allspace 1.4 TSI DSG: the beauty of space…

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The Tiguan is an absolute bestseller in its home country, and VW decided to widen its appeal by offering a longer version, which allows it to be a 7 seater, or rather 5+2 as VW calls it, as the extra two seats are meant for smaller kids. The Tiguan has gained in stance and elegance with this elongated body, and it was also for us an opportunity to drive the latest generation Tiguan, and again be amazed by its chassis, suspension and the state of the art petrol engined drivetrain…

Hans Knol ten Bensel

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More room…

The Tiguan has made itself many followers, also in our country, and the second generation certainly lives up to its well established reputation. The Allspace version is not less than 21,5 cm longer, and the difference is mainly seen from the B pillar onwards.

Having said this, the engine hood has a raised rim on the front edge, and the chromed profiles of the grille are reminiscent of the big VW Atlas.

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We drove the top “Highline” equipment version, with many amenities and a  superbly finished cabin. Note: the photos are taken this time with the Sony 5100, a compact mirrorless interchangeable lens camera recently added to our stable…

The wheelbase is 11 cm longer, and this is beneficial for the legroom at the rear. The rear seat will leave the knees free for the tallest amongst us, and indeed, this Allspace now offers more rear legroom than the Touareg. If you don’t need this much space, it is good to know that the rear seat can be moved back and forth a good 18 cm. The rear doors are also clearly longer, and the third window is styled with an upward swing, making the Allspace visually distinct from the normal Tiguan. Another distinction is the profile on the roof.

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The Allspace has also a rather more posh standard equipment level than the “classic” Tiguan, but let it be known that one can configure its Tiguan up to the very high tech level which a VW product can offer nowadays. State of the art MQB platform technology sees to that, which allows the full range of electronic driving aids and infotainment to be offered.

Powerful, refined and frugal drivetrain

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The 1,4 liter TSI engine develops 150 HP, which is enough to make this Allspace a (very) lively contender. It pulls also nicely from low revs, with 250 Nm of torque being available across a rev range between 1500 and 3500 rpm. Outright performance, where the DSG box lets the engine rev beautifully with a thoroughbred staccato, is quite good with a 0 to 100 acceleration time of 9,2 seconds and a 200 km/h top speed. Driven with restraint, the engine is almost inaudible and totally vibrationless and unobtrusive, being also ideally mated to the smooth six speed DSG box.

This engine adds a subtle touch of refinement to this Tiguan, and with its good torque is able to offer very creditable accelerations even when the car is loaded. Consumption is certainly with these bigger cars very much a matter of how you drive them, and driven with restraint it was no trouble for us to achieve an average of 6,6 liter/100 km in mixed motorway and urban traffic.

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The manufacturer quotes a combined fuel consumption of 6,1 liter/100 km and 140g/km of CO2 emissions. Of course there are more powerful petrol and also diesel engines available, starting also from 150 HP onwards. We are looking forward to drive one of the more powerful diesel versions, for instance.

Practical

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Needless to say that the cabin offers many storage facilities, and besides the massive legroom, there is also plenty of boot space. With the rear seat backrests up, but moved fully forward, a standard volume of 760 liter awaits you, and with all the seats folded back, it is not less than 1920 liter! As said, as an option, two small seats are possible in the third row, to take an extra two kids on the (city)trip…

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We liked of course also the very ergonomic positioning of all the knobs and handles, and the well honed infotainment and driving assistance items, where it must be said that we drove the top “highline” equipment level. The cruise control with ACC works smoothly and flawless, documenting the immense progress which has been made in honing this system in time.

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Entertaining handling

The handling of the Tiguan has not suffered from the greater length, and VW succeeded in limiting  the weight penalty to only 80 kg. On the contrary, the longer wheelbase makes for better comfort and a quieter ride. The excellent MQB platform and suspension both warrant precise and predictable handling, and although the Tiguan does not invite you to a sporting driving style, it can very well be a very fast and safe companion on winding roads. Also the electronic steering assistance is a pleasure, and does not impair steering accuracy.

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Conclusion

A stylish, well made quality car, spacious, ever more versatile, which has won already the hearts of many, and is set out to win many more. Modern day VW petrol engines add refinement, power and economy, with the state of the art DSG completing the picture. In the Highline version, it came stunningly well equipped, and you can understand that we parted only regretfully with this Tiguan Allspace, offering such pleasant space for all to share the joy in driving it…

Hans Knol ten Bensel

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