Don’t let the small engine in the 2013 Volkswagen Tiguan Crossover SUV fool you, this vehicle has plenty of spunk. A 2.0-liter four-cylinder offers 200 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque, which can accelerate zero to 60 mph in 7.5 seconds. This is actually equivalent to some of the competition with a V6. Plus, it is more than generous with fuel economy, returning 21 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway, with an automatic transmission. The Tiguan comes standard with a six-speed manual, but the six-speed automatic shifts flawlessly, and is highly recommended for optimal acceleration speeds and fuel economy. Also, all-wheel drive is optional on all trims, except the S base model, which it is not available on. If you do a lot of city driving, you will greatly appreciate this vehicle. It handles more like a sedan and has a small turning circle so parking and maneuvering in tight spaces won’t be a problem. It feels sporty and handles itself well on curvy roads, but don’t expect to tow a boat, because there is not nearly enough power to work quite this hard. It can handle about 2,200 pounds though, so taking your snowmobile up North will not be a problem.
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• Touchscreen Navigation - A 3-month trial subscription for SiriusXM satellite radio is included with the navigation system, which provides maps and directions.
• Audio - A premium sound system with HD radio is available that delivers crystal clear music through eight speakers. It includes an in-dash six-CD changer and MP3 playback capabilities.
• Bluetooth with Audio Streaming - Voice command allows you to make calls without taking your hands off the wheel. Plus, audio streaming allows you to listen to your playlist, talk shows, podcasts and more.
• Rearview Camera - This available option allows you to see the space behind your vehicle when you put it in reverse.
• Electric Parking Brake - A push of a button will offer peace-of-mind when parking on a hill. No need to fuss with levers in this vehicle.
The 2013 Tiguan is definitely a vehicle you can feel safe in. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave it a “Good” rating for roof, front and side-impact crash protection. Plus, when braking was tested, it stopped from 60 mph in a respectable 125 feet. Safety features to offer peace-of-mind include:
• Crash-optimized front end
• Three-pillar support structure
• Intelligent crash response
• Electronic stability control
• Antilock braking system
• Trailer sway control
• Stability control
• Emergency braking assist
• Electronic brakeforce distribution
• Antitheft alarm
• Front seatbelt pretensioners
• Tire pressure monitoring
• Child seat anchors
• Turn signal mirrors
• Engine immobilizer
• Rear door safety locks
• Traction control
• Brake drying
• Post-collisions safety system
There are probably very few people who will say that the exterior of the Tiguan really gets their heart beating. It is dull and dated, and could definitely benefit from a cool focal point or two. Standard wheels are only 16 inches, so nearly everyone will want to upgrade at least to the SE to get the 18-inch alloy wheels. The roof rails are an appreciated touch though.
As you would expect from Volkswagen, the cabin is upscale and comfortable. Genuine metal trim and soft touch materials complement one another, and controls are placed thoughtfully with the driver in mind. The touchscreen interface is phenomenal, but the navigation system is definitely a disappointment, when compared to those found in other vehicles. Seating for five is more than generous with rear seat passengers enjoying plenty of legroom. The seat back there even slides a full six inches.
For a small crossover, there is a surprising amount of cargo space. Behind the rear seat you enjoy 23.8 cubic feet or you can fold the seat flat for 56.1 cubes. As a bonus, the front passenger seat also folds completely flat, so you can easily haul extra-long items.