Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Tiguan Gives SUVs a Clean Bill of Health

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Tiguan Gives SUVs a Clean Bill of Health

Article excerpt

Byline: Patrick James

INNOVATIVE and adaptable car makers are gradually negating the myth of the four-wheel drive SUV as the gas-guzzling, toxic gas belching harbingers of Armageddon for the planet.

There is no doubt that some still produce high levels of CO but the new breed of cars, especially the likes of VW's excellent Tiguan, now offer the desirability of the SUV with a much greener tinge.

Take the two-litre diesel version of the VW's compact SUV. It develops a stonking 170bhp which gives it a real sporting edge, but produces CO emissions of 172g/km, putting it in the 25% car tax bracket, and excellent economy of 40mpg plus.

Designed, says VW, to look powerful and muscular, it hits the mark on that score. It's dynamic and sporty look is not just for show and the car has real sporting characteristics, with some of the best handling in its class.

It faces stiff opposition, notably the excellent Freelander, but does offer a sporty alternative.

It comes with five engine variants, a 1.4-litre and two two-litre petrol engines, plus two, 2.0-litre diesel variants, with five trim levels, which include S, SE, Sport, Escape, which has increased off-road capability, and the R Line.

All three engines offer sporty performance, even the 1.4 litre petrol offers a turbocharged 150bhp, but the diesel is the one that is the real all-rounder. The 170PS engine allows the car to accelerate from 0-60mph in under nine seconds with a top speed of 125mph available. Cornering is a delight and it remains stable and composed, even when pushed hard.

The VW 4motion technology allows the Tiguan decent off-road capability. But as the car is likely to be on-road most of the time, the system delivers 90% of the power to the front wheels. Should conditions change to mud or ice, the power is distributed to whichever axle or wheel needs the power. …

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