When we think of Volkswagen, we easily think of the GTI and Golf R, but although we love both of those models, the Tiguan is the brand’s best seller. VW wants to keep it that way and for the 2022 model year the Tiguan has received a small facelift that makes it look more stylish.
On the outside you’ll only be able to really tell the differences between the updated Tiguan and the old model at the front. The 2022 Tiguan’s face has been updated with new LED headlights and a restyled grille that is sleeker than before. The Tiguan continues to look more conservative and refined than some of its rivals, like the Hyundai Tucson and Toyota RAV4. The 2022 Tiguan also gets new wheels and at the rear the Tiguan name is now across the liftgate. Lastly there are are two new colors, Oryx White and Kings Red.
Inside the Tiguan’s interior has a simple layout with not too many buttons or lines. The interior is packed with high quality materials that make it feel a class above the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4. Soft plastic covers most of the interior and the available leather seats feel soft. One other stand out is the fact that the Tiguan is available with three-rows of seats. Front-wheel drive versions comes standard with the third row, providing extra seats for kids in the back. If you opt for the all-wheel drive Tiguan, you only get two rows of seats. The fact that the Tiguan can be outfitted with three rows sets it apart from nearly everything in its class, except the Mitsubishi Outlander. As expected the only downside is that there’s only 12 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row.
The Tiguan comes standard with an 8-inch digital gauge cluster, but the top spec gets a nicer 10.3-inch screen. The upgraded gauge cluster looks great and more modern than you’ll find in some its rivals. The Tiguan also comes standard with a 6.5-inch touchscreen, while upper trim levels get an 8-inch screen. The infotainment system isn’t a shinning point here with its outdated graphics and a clunky user interface. Fortunately Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are included to let you bypass the standard system.
There’s a long list of standard safety features, like forward-collision warning, rear-cross traffic alert and a blind-spot monitor. The IQ Drive suite adds automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control and lane centering.
Under the hood there’s only one engine available, a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with 184 horsepower and 221 pound-feet of torque. The four-cylinder is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. The Tiguan may look like it comes up a bit short on power, but around town the Tiguan is lively with good acceleration and responsiveness. We’ve continued to enjoy VW’s EA888 2.0-liter turbo engine due to its refinement. The powertrain packs more of a punch than the CR-V or RAV4, but it still comes up short compared to the turbocharged Mazda CX-5. You’ll especially notice then when trying to accelerate onto a highway, since the Tiguan can feel a bit slow when pushed hard.
The Tiguan is rated at 23 mpg city, 30 mpg highway and 26 mpg combined, while the all-wheel drive version is rated at 22/29/25 mpg. The top spec Tiguan SEL R-Line 4motion is rated at 21/28/24 mpg. The 2022 Tiguan is slightly more fuel efficient than before with a 1 mpg improvement on the highway and combined ratings.
On the road the Tiguan is not super sporty, but it has a level of refinement that makes it feel like a luxury car. The suspension places an emphasis on comfort, but it can still hold its own when the road gets twisty. It’s generally more fun to drive than some of its rivals. The steering is light, like pretty much every other SUV in its class, but it is quick.
The 2022 Tiguan is available in four trim levels: S, SE, SE R-Line Black and SEL R-Line. The pricing for the Tiguan starts at $27,490, while the SEL R-Line starts at $38,165.
The Tiguan continues to excel in the crowded compact SUV class. It’s easily a better SUV than the Toyota RAV4 thanks to its refined driving feel, and its spacious and luxury oriented interior.