8. Volkswagen Tiguan

VW Tiguan
3 Sep, 2014 12:00pm

You always pay a premium for a Volkswagen badge, but the Tiguan justifies its price with a strong performance across the board. Its bland styling is arguably its biggest weakness, but if you don’t mind its uninspiring looks, the VW delivers compact exterior dimensions and a well packaged interior with sliding rear seats that let you decide how much rear legroom or luggage space you need.

Interior quality is first rate and the driving experience is just as good because the Tiguan drives more like a regular hatchback than a compact SUV. Its composure and comfort mark it out as one of the best-driving models in the sector.

There’s a wide choice of engine and trim level options to choose from and if you want an automatic 4x4 the VW makes real sense as its smooth-shifting DSG gearbox barely affects CO2 emissions or economy (even the most powerful diesel auto in the range emits only 154g/km).

So what’s not to like? Well kit levels are stingy at best, so in like-for-like comparisons with rival models, the Tiguan can begin to look expensive. Escape models feature a revised front bumper to improve off-road ability.