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For 2016, the biggest change in the VW Tiguan lineup is a $1,400 price drop. New standard features include the MIB II infotainment system with USB, V-Tex leatherette upholstery, heated seats and keyless entry with push-button start. Finally, Tiguan trim lines have been reordered as S, R-Line, SE and SEL. The shuffle makes the sporty R-Line more accessible to buyers.
The Volkswagen Tiguan is offered in several different trims, including base S models, the sporty R-Line, mid-range SE and luxurious SEL models.
No matter which model buyers choose, the Tiguan is powered by a 2.0L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, making 200 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque. On the base Tiguan S, a 6-speed manual transmission is standard. A 6-speed automatic that includes Sport and manual-shift modes is optional on the S and standard on the rest of the lineup. The sporty R-Line also includes steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters.
Available on all Tiguan models with the 6-speed automatic, VW's 4Motion all-wheel drive system can continuously vary power to each of the four wheels depending on the conditions. Although 90 percent of drive torque normally gets sent to the front wheels, 4Motion can send up to 100 percent to the rear wheels when needed.
The Tiguan is a crossover wagon, and it allows plenty of passenger space plus a mechanical layout that allows it to ride and handle like a compact sedan. A strut-type front suspension and four-link rear setup keep the wheels in contact with the road, while an electromechanical power steering system provides precise control. The Tiguan includes four-wheel vented disc brakes, with vented discs in front as well as brake assist and an electronic parking brake. The Tiguan can tow up to 2,200 pounds when properly equipped.
Inside, the Tiguan's design affords easy entry and exit, and good visibility from the driver's seat. The back seat is also quite spacious and split 40/20/40, allowing access to a full 56.1 cubic-feet of cargo-carrying space -- over the already spacious 23.8 cubic-feet with the back seat in place.
The base Tiguan S includes power heated side mirrors, automatic headlights, V-Tex leatherette seats, cruise control, a multi-function steering wheel, air conditioning, intermittent wipers, Bluetooth connectivity, an MIB II infotainment system with 5-inch touchscreen, keyless entry with push-button start, and an 8-speaker sound system.
The R-Line model gets big 19-inch alloys plus black wheel-arch extensions, a sport suspension, power leather seats, a roof spoiler, aluminum kick plates, a flat-bottom steering wheel, a black headliner, stainless-steel pedals, rain-sensing wipers, power-folding and heated mirrors, bi-xenon headlamps, LED running lamps and additional lighting and trim. Additionally, a 6.3-inch touchscreen with VW Car-Net App-Connect is standard.
SE models add a panoramic sunroof, 18-inch "New York" alloy wheels, V-Tex seating plus heated front seats, a power driver and passenger seat recline, heated washer nozzles, and adaptive front headlights. The SEL features 19-inch "Savannah" alloy wheels, leather upholstery, dual-zone automatic climate control, and a Fender Premium Audio System.