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As of right now, VW has a very incomplete US lineup that consists of a bunch of Jetta-sized models, the midsize Passat and the big and heavy Toureg. Volkswagen is trying to rectify that situation with the forthcoming Tiguan, which in concept form is a CRV-fighting crossover with some panache.

Motor Trend was lucky enough to get to try out an early edition of the Tiguan in far off Namibia in Southwest Africa, and they came away impressed. All four vehicles tested came equipped with the European market 1.4-liter Twincharger engine (supercharger and turbocharger) packing 150 HP and 177 lb.-ft. of torque, and a Haldex AWD system. VW must be serious about the Tiguan's off-road prowess, considering the dusty conditions used for testing and the special "Track and Field" edition models with a 28-degree approach angle. Initially, Tiguan buyers will be able to choose either a six-speed manual or an automatic transmission, but expect the latter to be replaced by VW's DSG within a year.

[Source: Motor Trend via The VW Gazette]

American consumers won't get the 30 MPG combined Twincharger engine or the "Track and Field" package, but we will get VW's excellent turbocharged 2.0L engine and a "Sport and Style" edition without the off-road pretensions. VW is hoping to sell 40,000 copies of the Tiguan per year in the US, and sales are slated to begin next summer. We Yanks are used to being left out in the cold when it comes to new and exciting fuel efficient powertrains (save for some hybrids), but when we start getting the shaft on off-road packages, we take notice. It's not that many of us actually let our vehicles hit the dirt, but we just like knowing we can when the need arises.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      offroad means nothing to american compact SUV shoppers. for the most part. If it does they go all out for an FJ or Wrangler.

      Anyway, more interesting is the "journalism" angle. They're seriously covering a pre-production, test car. So much changes from this stage to what winds up rolling off the assembly line it's not even funny. We're going to see a new type of embargo war going on now, who can get into pre-production test mules first!!! yippee!!!!
      • 8 Years Ago
      The name alone will probably costs them 1000's of sales. You'd have thought they would learn something after the Toureg disaster but I guess not. BMW never learned after countless Bangle related trainwrecks so why should VW be any different.
        • 8 Years Ago
        funny, i will be buying this because of the name.
      • 8 Years Ago
      As long as the diesel is here, I'm happy. This will be a serious contender for my mum's next car if I can get a diesel with DSG and AWD.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Weren't we told by Autoblog a few months back this vehicle was on hold or canceled? Now they talk like it was never said. I guess we are fools or I am losing my mind.
        • 8 Years Ago
        What was said was that this car was put on hold to be slightly redesigned by Walter de'Silva's team. It wasn't an earthquake...
          • 8 Years Ago
          And I take it this is the de Silva re-do?
      • 8 Years Ago
      Wow, lots of hate.

      1. The twincharger offers 177 ft-lbs of torque and 30 mpg COMBINED. That's not easy to come by anywhere. Consider the 207 ft-lb torque 2.0T gets about 27 mpg combine in 3100-3200 lbs, sleeker, lower, FWD GTI and A3 models. For a larger, taller, less sleek vehicle using AWD, 30 mpgs combined is quite a feat...especially with pretty good torque.

      2. The 2.0 Bluetec engine will deliver the goods in a big, big way. That engine pulls 40 mpgs easily in the Passat. Even if it only gets 38 mpg combine, that's a far cry better than any other cute-ute out there.

      • 8 Years Ago
      Another derivative of the current crop of mid-sized utes. Could be easily mistaken for any one of 3 or 4 others in a parking lot.

      Since the Touareg has been a bit of a disappointment, VW shouldn't bet the ranch on this one.
      • 8 Years Ago
      People must be adapting to gas prices. None of the first 5 posts whined about lack of horsepower, translating to a possible understanding that more hp usually means far less mpg.

      It would be nice to get a shot at buying a v dub stateside with a turbo and super charger though. If the awd is sweet enough, it may keep me from subie for my next ride...
      • 8 Years Ago
      The early prototype looked fantastic, but the photo in this article looks a bit stretched and reminiscent of the Chevy Equinox. Yikes, hope they don't morph it into a station wagon with 3rd row seating. Otherwise, this VW could be a great vehicle. The new Honda CRV did it right by maintaining it's SUV proportions, but it is a bit underpowered.

      I think the Autoblog author is incorrect when assuming that Americans will mind terribly if we miss out on extensive off-road prowess. I do want some 4wd capability in snowy or wet conditions and for places like gravel forest service roads. However, the other 95% of the time, it must have decent fuel mileage. If VW puts a 2.0 liter turbo diesel in this vehicle, it should provide adequate power as well as fuel economy. Unfortunately, the article fails to state whether the 2.0 liter destined for the U.S. is gas or diesel.

      • 8 Years Ago
      Adding the usual cash payoff to this "scoop" should make this car of the year at MT.
        Christopher Watts
        • 8 Years Ago
        Agreed! But at least it gives BMW and Porsche's accounting offices some well deserved 'time-off' from writting so many checks. Those folks could use a well-earned vacation at this point.
      • 8 Years Ago
      You should not use the word "packing" to describe 150 HP.
      • 8 Years Ago
      My only complaint is that VW/AUDI is so far behind the curve in the SUV and Cross-Over segments..

      I had to buy an ML350 because VAG didn't offer anything comparable in the US. The Q7 is too big and the Cayenne/Touareg is also too big and heavy. The BMW X5 is a terrible ergonomic mess and the X3 is on the more petite side. The ML is just the right size to be used as a daily driver and a weekend traveller.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Nice lines, definitely has the VW face on it (under the cloaking). Interior looks nice & quality finished, as with other current VW products...

      With the 2.0 Turbo (mod-friendly, lots of potential)
      6-speed Stick
      Mid-to-upper 20mpg
      and $25,000 starting price..........

      Sign me up! :)
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