2022 Volkswagen Tiguan preview: Update for compact crossover with a light touch

If you need another reason to fast forward to next year, perhaps VW has one for you.

The 2022 Volkswagen Tiguan that appeared Tuesday was unveiled more than a year before it arrives in the U.S., leapfrogging the 2021 Tiguan that hasn’t arrived yet. (If you’re wondering why, it’s because orders for the European version are open and Americans have little patience, apparently.)

When it finally gets here, the new Tiguan will sport VW’s latest and greatest infotainment system, new touch controls, and a slightly reworked exterior. Don’t hold your breath for a Tiguan R in the States any time soon. Execs from VW poured cold water on that idea early and often, although proponents of a hotter crossover are pushing hard behind the scenes to bring it to the U.S., according to brand officials.

In the meantime, we’ll make do with a 2.0-liter turbo-4 Tiguan that pushes 184 horsepower to the front or all four wheels via an 8-speed automatic transmission. VW says it’s tinkered with the software to make the Tiguan a little more user-friendly, but the hardware stays the same.

2022 Volkswagen Tiguan

2022 Volkswagen Tiguan

That powertrain is wrapped by a body that’s nearly identical, short of a facelift—Burt Reynolds-style. The grille and headlights are a little stretched and visually wider, although the Tiguan’s dimensions are mostly the same. The grille is more in line with the redesigned 2021 Atlas and new 2021 Atlas Cross Sport, including unique R-Line lower bumpers with wider intakes. The badges around the back are a little blockier, and LED taillights are standard.

Inside, the Tiguan adds a digital instrument cluster that’s 8.0 inches on the diagonal, upgradable to 10.3 inches on the top-shelf Tiguan. When it arrives, the 2022 Tiguan will be offered in S, SE, SE R-Line Black, and SEL R-Line trim levels. Only the base Tiguan S gets a 6.5-inch touchscreen for infotainment duties, the rest of the pack gets an 8.0-inch version.

2022 Volkswagen Tiguan

2022 Volkswagen Tiguan

Most Tiguans will have touch-sensitive climate controls and touch-sensitive steering wheel controls to complement the touchscreen, just like the Arteon. Just wash your hands please.

Interior space is the same, which is good for the already bloated compact crossover. A third-row seat suitable only for children or adults who act like children is standard on front-drive Tiguans. All-wheel-drive models can add the cramped wayback for an extra cost. Like the previous Tiguan, the second row slides fore and aft several inches for more cargo room or leg room.

Heated cloth seats are standard on all models, while synthetic leather or real hides sub in on SE and SEL trim levels, respectively. The Tiguan dresses up with two new colors—white and red—with 20-inch wheels available on top models.

VW isn’t talking about price just yet. We expect to know more this time next year when, hopefully, inflation hasn’t pushed the price beyond six figures.


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