Home / Social media / Cars / Volkswagen's GTI-killer, the all-new Tiguan, has arrived and it looks great.


OK, let’s explain that headline a little. The Tiguan is a GTI-killer, but not in the sense that you likely immediately thought we meant - in performance. No, not that. While the Tiguan is offered up with the same powerplants as the much-loved GTI and has great performance, a GTI will still be faster and more composed when it comes to handling. When we call it a GTI-killer we mean in sales and availability. It’s a known and proven fact that the motoring world started buying into SUVs over other options, and so automakers have concentrated on making their SUV offerings better and have in a way neglected their other model ranges. It’s not the case for all automakers, of course. In the case of VW, especially here, many industry conspiracy theorists think that the MK8 GTI and the Mk8 R models were purposely not brought in to help bolster the SUV sales instead. In our circles, we know of a couple of guys who had the 8R on order only to cancel and take a Tiguan because there was no waiting period to get the car. In this case, it’s kept them in the VW stable and at the same time helped “prove” that local buyers are moving away from hot hatches. In some cases, it’s backfired though as we’ve seen die-hard VW enthusiasts opting for something from other manufacturers instead. There are still apparent supply-chan issues in getting 8R orders into SA, but we’re quite sure that there will be no issues when buyers want the new Tiguan you see here. And that brings us to the new Tiguan, while it may be one of the offerings responsible for helping the demise of the hot hatch as we know it, it’s pretty damn cool and we’d also love to see one parked in the driveway. This is now the Tiguan’s 3rd generation, and it’s guaranteed to be ridiculously popular too. Since the first generation was released in 2007, the nameplate has amassed over 7.6 million sales. By 2020, 2.3 million GTis were sold worldwide. With that math, it’s no wonder the Tiguan is getting preference. Sure, not all those Tiguan sales were top-tier models, but still.

The all-new Tiguan has been updated in all the right places to make it a rather exceptional offering and a plug-in hybrid has been added to the model lineup, but the way it goes in SA, we likely won’t see that for a while. The ID. range of electric VWs is already in a second generation and we’re yet to see any in the country. We were interested in the available powerplants for the new SUV but VW hasn’t released any proper information and specifications of the powertrains yet. We only know there will be a petrol-fed TSI model, the aforementioned hybrid eTSI, and a turbo-diesel TDI offering or two. We’re hoping for an R-Line version that should offer up similar specs as to what the Mk8 GTI has, so around 180 kW with 370 Nm of torque. One thing that has been confirmed is that all Tiguan models going forward will feature a DSG transmission, the manual is dead. The new generation features improved aerodynamics with ironically flat LED headlights and glass-covered horizontal strip, a completely new interior concept and design, a 38 cm infotainment screen, a new head-up display, and a new multifunction driving experience switch with an integrated OLED display. One major change is the gear selection controls to match the new ID. models. The gear position will be changed by means of a steering column switch on the right of the steering wheel, this is turned forward to “D” to drive forwards and backwards to “R” to reverse, while the parking brake is activated by pressing the side of the switch. All models will come standard with flappy paddles. It's all very premium and looks to raise standards for this classification of vehicle. Competitors are going to have to bring their A-game to sway buyers away from the VW offerings. Here in SA, it’s likely to be quite pricey but that shouldn’t see it affect sales too much, the only worry is the Chinese offerings that are looking like great bang for their buck and so more and more people are starting to take a serious look at them when buying new cars.

Take a look at the YouTube video from the worldwide reveal of the all-new Volkswagen Tiguan, one of the German automaker's most popular offerings in many of the markets its sold in, including here in SA. This is one of those SUV models that's so good its managed to sway hot hatch drivers to cross over into the world of bigger and more practical cars while still maintaining an alignment with the brand: World Premiere: The new Volkswagen Tiguan | Volkswagen

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