2022 Volkswagen Tiguan revealed with new tech, but the same engine

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Wondering about the 2022 Volkswagen Tiguan? Well, wonder no more, because VW has revealed its secrets. The 2021 Tiguan hasn’t even been detailed by Volkswagen yet, but since Europe is getting the refreshed Tiguan now (hitting dealers next month), VW decided to tell the U.S. what it has to look forward to. You’ll have to look very far forward, though, because the updated Tiguan isn’t going to hit our shores until Fall 2021. 

The update consists of what’s typically expected for a mid-cycle refresh of a vehicle performing well — it’s currently Volkswagen’s top-seller in the U.S. To start, the Tiguan gets new styling in front and back — you’re looking at photos of the short wheelbase Euro-spec car, so just imagine this, but longer. We’re told photos of the updated long wheelbase Tiguan will come closer to when it goes on sale. It gets new, streamlined headlights that flow out of the fettled grille smoothly. The front lower surround appears to be much larger and more dramatic than before, especially in the R-Line trim. VW has also changed up its badging for the R-Line to be consistent with the new R badging it’s already revealed. New wheel designs are coming to every trim level; LED lights all around are standard, and there are a couple new colors (Oyrx White and Kings Red).

On the inside, all the trim levels get newly designed interior trimmings. They’re all variations of silver and gray, but the new Noisette (brown) and Cinnamon (light beige) seat colors will bring a splash of vibrancy to the interior. New and improved tech is the real draw with this update, though. Volkswagen has made the eight-inch Digital Cockpit instrument cluster standard equipment, ditching the physical gauges entirely. A 10.25-inch Digital Cockpit is available, but you need to step up to the SEL R-Line to get it. The latest MIB3 software will be running on the car’s infotainment system; a new steering wheel with touch capacitive controls is standard, and you’ll also have ambient lighting with 15 different color options on the top trim. 

The base S trim gets more standard features than last year, adding heated seats, keyless entry and almost every driver assistance system in Volkswagen’s roster. You have to step up to the SE in order to get lane-keeping assist and adaptive cruise control with VW’s Traffic Jam Assist. Stepping all the way up to the SEL R-Line brings VW’s more advanced system called “Travel Assist and Predictive ACC.” It can handle the steering, braking and acceleration from 0-130 mph. You still need to keep your hands on the wheel (it uses touch detection), but it’s even more capable guidance and is activated by a separate button press on the steering wheel. Volkswagen has also found that its R-Line package has been popular, so it’s adding a cheaper SE R-Line Black trim that eschews some of the tech extras but retains the R-Line look for a cheaper price.

We haven’t discussed the powertrain yet, because it’s almost entirely carryover. VW says it has made some software adjustments to the engine and transmission to “enhance its drivability.” The 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder continues to make 184 horsepower and 221 pound-feet of torque. It’s still mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission, and VW expects it to receive the same fuel economy ratings as it did before: 22 mpg city, 29 highway and 25 combined with FWD, and 21/29/24 mpg with AWD. 

Pricing hasn’t been announced yet, but expect it to come in slightly higher than the $25,965 base price of the 2020 Tiguan. All the details on a 2021 Tiguan should be forthcoming, but any changes will be minor for the next immediate model year.

That’s all from America, but Europe is getting two extra versions of the Tiguan: a Tiguan R and a plug-in hybrid model. We know the Tiguan R will have 315 horsepower, and the PHEV will have 241 horsepower total, but additional details will have to wait for the time being.

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Saurabh Shukla

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