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In-depth reviews

Volkswagen Taigo review - Engines, performance and drive

The Taigo offers modest power from its TSI petrol engines, prioritising comfort over performance

Overall Auto Express Rating

4.0 out of 5

Engines, performance and drive Rating

4.0 out of 5

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​Buyers shouldn’t be fooled into thinking that the stylish, sporty-looking Taigo comes with extra performance credentials over its T-Cross sibling. There’s no hot R model at the top of the range, with only 1.0 and 1.5-litre TSI petrol engines to choose from – the most powerful providing 148bhp.

Ultimately, this reflects the true character of Volkswagen’s small coupe-SUV; a leisurely, laid-back cruiser that brings a little more elegance to everyday driving. There’s a focus on overall stability and comfort, although there’s a bit more road noise than we’d like and a fidgety ride at lower speeds.

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Most of the Taigo’s life will arguably be spent in and around town and on urban commutes, so it perhaps seems odd that in the manual vs automatic gearbox debate, we’d recommend the manual. We found the auto to be jerky when attempting to park, and also a bit hesitant when pulling away from junctions – not ideal traits if you spend a lot of time navigating the hustle and bustle of busy streets.

However, the Taigo is perfectly pleasant at motorway speeds, and the 108bhp 1.0-litre engine is responsive enough. Opting for the 148bhp 1.5-litre unit does add an additional 50Nm of torque, though, which helps to make overtaking that bit easier.

0-62mph acceleration and top speed

The Taigo lineup relies on a selection of Volkswagen’s entry and mid-range TSI petrol engines to power the coupe-SUV. The entry 94bhp 1.0-litre version is capable of 0-62mph in a sluggish 11.1 seconds, although upgrading to the 108bhp variant means the sprint time falls to 10.4 seconds (in six-speed manual form).

There’s decent pace to be found in the 148bhp 1.5-litre R-Line model, which manages 0-62mph in 8.3 seconds and a top speed of 132mph.

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