The second-generation VW Tiguan is a popular SUV here in Malaysia. That is mainly because it struck the right chord with families looking for a midsize SUV that has good ride and handling, decently powerful, spacious enough, and possesses a European driving experience. So, when it came time to give the Tiguan a refresh, VW didn't muck about in improving its best-selling model.
So, has the facelift made the Tiguan more interesting? We dive in for a deeper look.
The pre-facelift model's front end had a very squared-off look, from the lines of the headlights running onto the grilles and lower section of the bumper. With the facelift model, VW treated the front end to more curves around the headlights (which are now LED Matrix units) and bumper. Even the front grille has more curvature on the facelifted car. Still, it doesn't look too gaudy and retains an elegant air to it.
Onto the side profile, there's not much change to the overall profile, this being a facelift. The most obvious difference being the garnish running the length of the side doors.
Moving to the rear end, the most prominent difference is the new 'Tiguan' lettering that sits just below the reprofiled VW logo. This seems to be the norm for VW going forward, having model letterings on the rear bootlid. Further to that, the taillamp design has also been refreshed (still LED units), although the physical shape remains the same.
On the rear bootlid sits a slightly larger spoiler on the facelifted car, whereas the outgoing model had a more subtle one. The facelift model also has dual exhaust exits where the pre-facelift had only left-sided exits. VW has resisted giving facelift's rear bumper too many slats or intakes. Therefore, it still looks clean and understated in profile.
Moving inside, the first things you'd notice on the facelift model are the redesigned steeering wheel and Climatronic controls, both which now feature touch-sensitive controls. The overall layout of the cabin remains largely the same. The new MIB3 infotainment system is also ready for wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Mechanically, the Malaysian-spec, pre-facelift Tiguan is powered by a 1.4-litre TSI engine (150 PS, 250 Nm), paired to a 6-speed dual-clutch DSG transmission. The facelift model's powertrain specifications should not deviate too much from the current set up.
Facelift or not, we think the Tiguan is a rather talented SUV in its own right. Read what our colleague Shaun thinks about the Tiguan.