Tiguan can do it

Volkswagen Tiguan, front static
Volkswagen Tiguan, front action
Volkswagen Tiguan, rear static
Volkswagen Tiguan, boot
Volkswagen Tiguan, rear seats
Volkswagen Tiguan, dashboard

RECENT reports have found that many new car buyers are moving away from diesel as petrol engines become more economical.

I had begun to think this might happen, because of the time most diesel cars now take to break even over their petrol stablemates.

And of course, the way a petrol engine sounds, compared to any four cylinder diesel, can make a huge difference to anyone who enjoys driving.

I recently had drives in both petrol and diesel models of the new Volkswagen Tiguan, and when the petrol 1.4 turbo drives so beautifully and is still capable of a real 40+mpg, it's definitely the one I prefer.

Like most smaller SUVs, front wheel drive is standard, so if you want all wheel drive traction, you have to pay a premium.

The 1.4 turbo produces a hefty 150bhp, and pulls smoothly and tunefully from just above tickover all the way to the red line.

That said, there's no point in taking it that far, since it performs just as well with earlier gearchanges.

Drive is through a sweet changing six speed gearbox with a light clutch, and although it is available with the superb DSG auto, this is vastly more expensive.

It feels surefooted and agile through the corners, if not particularly sporty, but the ride is excellent over all surfaces either at slow or fast speeds.

The interior is bigger than the outgoing model thanks to increased length and wheelbase, and the quality of everything has been improved over what was already very good.

It comes with plenty of standard tech including adaptive cruise control, emergency city braking and LED lights front and rear.

But S, SE, SE Navigation, SEL and R-Line trims can be upgraded from the extensive extras list.

The SE I drove comes with alloy wheels, protective lower-body cladding, black roof rails, leather covered multi-function steering wheel, fore-and-aft sliding rear seat with a 40:20:40 split-fold and an eight-inch touchscreen incorporating DAB radio and Bluetooth.

FAST FACTS

Price: £25,260

Mechanical: 147bhp, 1,395cc, 4 cylinder petrol driving front wheels via a 6 speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 125mph

0-62mph: 9.3 seconds

Combined MPG: 48

Insurance Group:17

C02 emissions:132g/km

Bik rating: 25%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000miles

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