What's the used Volkswagen Tiguan estate like?
One of the biggest complaints made of this second-generation Volkswagen Tiguan, when it arrived in 2016, was its price. People believed it to be too expensive, particularly in relation to its predecessor.
Now, with a fair few years under its belt, this doesn't plague the Tiguan – the model makes for a very healthy used proposition. There’s also the option of four-wheel drive on most variants and a stretched seven-seater Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace version.
Engines & Performance: The diesel line-up opens with the 113bhp 2.0 TDI, which can feel a little short of puff. Next up is the best-selling 148bhp 2.0 TDI, which offers a fine blend of performance and economy. There are also more powerful 187bhp and twin-turbo 237bhp versions of the 2.0-litre engine, which offer increasing levels of get-up-and-go at the cost of additional fuel consumption.
The petrols begin with a 123bhp 1.4-litre TSI, which is the most affordable engine of the lot but can struggle a bit on inclines. The 148bhp 1.4 TSI is better but still lacks the low-rev pulling power of the diesels.
Both 1.4-litre engines were replaced by the 1.5 TSI Evo in 2018, offering two power outputs: 128bhp and 148bhp. The 178bhp 2.0-litre TSI petrol engine feels quick but lacks the in-gear flexibility of the diesels. This was replaced by an updated 187bhp version and a 227bhp version that was added to the range in 2019.
Post-2019 models slimmed the range to the 1.5 TSI engine in 130 and 150 versions, and the 2.0 TDI diesel in 150 and 200 versions. There's also an eHybrid which combines a 1.4-litre petrol engine with an electric motor. In electric mode, the top speed is 81mph and the battery provides an official range of 31 miles with enough acceleration to keep pace in traffic. When the petrol engine joins in, it brings near-hot hatch performance when you want it (0-62mph takes just 7.5 seconds).
Ride & Handling: On the road, the Tiguan rides and handles very nicely indeed. It can smother road imperfections and speed bumps admirably, while still being firm enough to offer the kind of handling that the owner of a normal hatchback would be used to.
The BMW X3 is more fun, but the Tiguan remains good to drive.
Interior & Practicality: The interior doesn't excite, but its solid build quality, soft-touch plastics and good-looking materials will please any owner. The driving position is excellent and visibility is good, too.
There’s plenty of space up front and rear passengers get lots of leg and head room, with three-abreast seating fine even for adults. It’s flexible, too, with split-folding, sliding and reclining rear seats, and the boot is large even by class standards. The seven-seat Allspace has two third-row seats that are fine for shorter adults but only for very short journeys.
Trims & Equipment: Trim levels initially started with S, which gives you air conditioning, 17in alloy wheels, electric windows and an 8.0in touchscreen infotainment system. SE adds tri-zone climate control, front and rear parking sensors and cruise control, while SE Nav adds sat-nav. SEL trim gives you a digital instrument display, LED headlights and 19in wheels, while range-topping R-Line versions gain sportier styling tweaks, 20in wheels and stiffer sports suspension.
SE and SE Nav were combined as part of model revisions in 2019 to become Match. This new trim level gets 19in alloys, a rear-view camera, keyless entry and a parking assistance feature. R-Line Tech became the new top model and added an electric tailgate and a surround-view camera system.
Later, post-2019 models had a range trimmed down to Elegance, Life R-Line and Tiguan.
Safety and security kit are also top-notch, with automatic emergency braking standard on all models and a five-star Euro NCAP score.
What used Volkswagen Tiguan estate will I get for my budget?
Generally speaking, the Tiguan is a popular car that holds on to its value well.
Shop around and you can find this generation of Tiguan for as little as £11,000 now. This will buy you an early car with high-ish mileage for the year and a full service history, bought from an independent dealer.
Up the budget to around £15,000 and you’ll find 2017 and 2018 cars with lower mileages on the forecourts, with your choice of engines (although most Tiguans of this age are diesels) and some four-wheel drive examples, too. Increase your budget to at least £19,000 if you want to buy a 2019 car or a little more for a post-facelift 2019 or early 2020 car. Spend between £22,000 and £26,000 on 2021 and 2022 cars.
Nearly new 2023 models start at around £26,000.
Check the value of a used Volkswagen Tiguan with What Car? Valuations
How much does it cost to run a Volkswagen Tiguan estate?
MPG: Whether petrol or diesel powered, the Tiguan is fairly economical in comparison with its rivals. The top-performing petrol engine, the 148bhp 1.4 TSI in S trim, returns 48.7mpg under the older NEDC fuel consumption tests, and the best diesel, the 113bhp 2.0 TDI in S trim, achieved 60.1mpg under the same rules. Under the more modern and realistic WLTP regime, the 128bhp 1.5 engine manages 44.8mpg and the 148bhp 1.5 engine 40.4mpg, while the 148bhp 2.0 TDI in S trim is the best performer, with 50.4mpg.
CO2 emissions: Of the engines available before the taxation change in April 2017, the 148bhp 1.4 TSI has the lowest official CO2 emissions of the petrol range, at 130g/km. The 178bhp 2.0 TSI when lumbered with four-wheel drive and an automatic gearbox is the worst, at 170g/km.
The diesels are far better in terms of CO2 output, with just 123g/km produced by the 113bhp and 148bhp 2.0-litre engines. Adding four-wheel drive and an automatic gearbox increases emissions to 147g/km, while the twin-turbocharged 237bhp version emits the most greenhouse gas, at 167g/km.
Road tax: Any Tiguan registered after 1 April 2017 will pay the latest flat-rate of annual road tax (VED), with an additional surcharge for any example that cost more than £40,000 when new. Those cars registered before this date will pay varying rates linked to their CO2 emissions. The current road tax is £180 per year. The luxury surcharge is £390 per year.
Insurance and servicing: Insurance groups are low, on the whole, ranging from 11 for the base petrol and diesel models up to 27 for the powerful 2.0 Biturbo TDI 240 model.
Servicing costs shouldn’t be too exorbitant, and older examples over three years of age can take advantage of fixed-price maintenance that currently runs at £184 for a minor service and £354 for a major one.
The Volkswagen Tiguan enjoys a strong reliability reputation according to What Car? readers, with minimal reports of significant issues. The most common complaints revolve around electrical faults, specifically with the infotainment and navigation systems. These issues, while not hindering the Tiguan's driveability, often require dealership intervention for software fixes and hardware repairs.
Feedback on dealership service is mixed; while some owners commend the quick and efficient resolution of problems, others have faced delays in issue diagnosis and part procurement, resulting in extended repair times.
Despite these concerns, the Tiguan is still praised for its overall reliability, though experiences with dealer service can vary by location.
Discover more about the used Volkswagen Tiguan's reliability on our dedicated reliability page.
Which used Volkswagen Tiguan estate should I buy?
Among many fine engine options, and provided you have no objection to diesel, the 148bhp 2.0 TDI offers such a fine blend of punch and efficiency that it stands out. However, our pick is the petrol, and we'd choose the 148bhp 1.4 TSI in earlier cars, or as it later became the 1.5 TSI 150, because it's more refined than the diesel and its running costs are far more sensible than those of the larger 2.0-litre petrol models.
While a Tiguan in SE trim will offer most of the features you could want, or at least need, we'd suggest that you look for an SE Nav version in order to get sat-nav. It shouldn't be hard to find one, because there are plenty around on the used market.
What alternatives should I consider to a used Volkswagen Tiguan estate?
The 2015-2022 BMW X1 is the kind of premium family SUV the Tiguan now faces. The X1 is spacious, practical and has a high-quality interior. On top of that, it’s good to drive, with fine handling, and it features a great infotainment system.
The Volvo XC40 is another high-quality product. It was our 2018 What Car? Car of the Year winner, and with good reason. It’s enjoyable to drive, practical and good-looking inside and out, with a solidly constructed interior full of soft-touch materials. It’s well equipped, too.
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