The name Tiguan is not new, in fact the model was launched back in 2017 as a premium mid-sized SUV into the Indian market to take on the likes of Honda CR-V and Hyundai Tucson. Seeing the popularity of these two vehicles, it could not make a case for itself which is why in 2019 Volkswagen group went back to the drawing board to seek some answers. Come 2020, the German automaker was back with an all-new version in the form of a 7-seater configuration instead of the original 5-seater model. To add more, last year the Volkswagen Group India announced a new strategy under which their sister concern Skoda Auto India would lead charge of operations for the entire unit and thus this merger meant that the company name was changed to Skoda Auto Volkswagen India Private Limited. According to the India 2.0 project announced by the brand, it was to realign itself and focus on one prime category that of locally built SUVs. During the Delhi Auto Expo, the company made several crucial announcements and the introduction of Tiguan All-Space was one of them. Having given you the background, let us now straight away get into the review of this model.
How is it to look at?
With all the glamour around it, you might expect this to be an all-new product. But let us tell you that from a new design perspective there is not much to offer out here. So upfront what one would get is a familiar face consisting of the same design elements that were made available on Tiguan 5-seater SUV. The only minimal change is the absence of cladding that was provided earlier on the lower half of the front bumper. That apart you will see the same front grille with chrome finished highlights and the VW logo sitting prominently in the centre. Its headlamps are the same and so is the front bumper. Move to the sides and this is where the stark difference comes in due to the stretched rear quarter that provides that extra row of seating. Flared wheel arches, chrome touches on the front fenders and surrounds on the doors give it a premium appeal alongside the elegant looking alloy wheels. Round the back, there is not much to talk about as the design elements remain the same as before. Though the addition of chrome surrounds for the exhausts is the only thing to take notice of. So, overall if you are looking for drastic updates, there are not many. With its longish sides, the SUV does look a bit stately and why not it is the All-Space after all.
What are the interiors like?
As expected, it is a typical Volkswagen. Supreme build quality, the premium feel of plastics and leather are very inviting the moment you get inside the cabin. Though one would have liked to see a new dashboard layout, which along with a single tone interior feels a bit glum. Out of a few things, which have been changed, is the presence of a new instrument cluster that makes it from Audi. Let us remind you the earlier Tiguan used to come equipped with an analogue instrument cluster which has been turned into all digital. It looks cool and provides an edge to this section of the vehicle. Since the All-Space is offered only as a fully loaded model to customers in the country, it come fitted with a panoramic sunroof, leather upholstery, three-zone climate control, powered boot lid, park assist and an 8.0-inch infotainment system that offers Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and Mirror Link. Further the safety kit on-board comprises 7 airbags, LED headlights with dynamic cornering function, front and rear parking sensors among many others. As for comfort, the front seats feel a bit firm but that apart are bolstered well to keep its occupants at ease.
Like the front, the middle row of seats is also very comfortable. They provide a great amount of cushioning while the lumber and under thigh support is also good. Just behind the front seats, one will also notice the presence of two individual folding trays on either side which comes in handy to keep things. Both these sections have ample legroom to offer. To charge your electronics, the company has given a 12V socket. Availability of rear AC vents and a centre arm rest are added benefits to the user. Now to the third row, for starters getting in and getting out is a bit of an issue without having to harm yourself. Once seated, it is instantly clear that in case you are someone tall or mid height then this is not the place to be in. There is very less legroom while the comfort factor is not that pleasing as well. Tiguan All-Space caters to a luggage capacity of 230-litres which can further be extended to 700-litres by simply folding the rear seats down.
What is its performance and drive like?
Diesel powertrains have always been a favourite for this segment. However, keeping in mind the transition from BS4 to BS6 emission norms last year, the German automobile manufacturer brought in a petrol-powered model only. Thus, what you get here is a 2.0-litre turbocharged, direct-injection TSI petrol motor that delivers a maximum power output of 190bhp @4200 rpm and torque figure of 350 Nm @1500 – 4100 rpm. The engine comes to life the moment you go past the 2000 rpm mark. Having a linear power delivery, the heart of this SUV is useful in making effective overtaking manoeuvres.
Blending in perfectly well is the presence of a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission with paddle shifters. Though one has the option of using the manual gear lever to further enjoy the drivetrain as per their need. Given the size of the vehicle, its handling characteristics are decent. Though what seems to be a subject of concern is the ride quality which is on the stiffer side. Moreover, thud noise can easily be heard and felt inside the cabin. Like its predecessor, this one too features off-road modes and comes fitted with Hill Descent Control among other functions.
Currently priced at Rs 33,24,500 (ex-showroom), the Tiguan All-Space is a true Volkswagen product that comes with a premium appeal be it the exterior design, interior look, and comfort while its performance is good too. Given all these, for the price it demands, according to us there are better options that could serve your purpose well especially in the case if you are on the lookout for an 7-seater SUV. You know the likes of Toyota Fortuner, MG Gloster and Ford Endeavour of sorts which can be used within the city limits and for the occasional outings. Rest if you still insist on a VW then, then go ahead there is no harm in owning one.