New 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan Limited SUV New 2018
Volkswagen Tiguan Limited SUV

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KBB Editor's Overview

By KBB.com Editorial Staff

The 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan Limited compact SUV shouldn’t be confused with the all-new Tiguan. Its “Limited” name designates it as a carryover version of the previous version. The rationale for having two concurrent Tiguan models is pricing. Starting just over $23,000, the Tiguan Limited is $2,345 less than the all-new model, making it an attractive option for those wanting a small-crossover SUV for a low price. While the Tiguan Limited is smaller than the new version and lacks that model’s advanced safety features and fresh design, this older Tiguan still has appeal. Beyond a price that undercuts rivals like the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4, the Tiguan Limited has a zesty turbocharged engine, fun driving dynamics, and offers Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity.

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You'll Like This SUV If...

If you want a small new crossover SUV for a great value, the Tiguan Limited is worth consideration. Other motivating factors include its taut European driving dynamics, available all-wheel drive, and smartphone connectivity that’s compatible with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink.

You May Not Like This SUV If...

Even when it was new, the Volkswagen Tiguan was smaller than most of its rivals, which means you won’t get the kind of room for rear passengers and cargo offered by others. Since the Tiguan Limited is based on a model that came out in 2009, it doesn’t offer the advanced safety features and driver-assistance technology that has since developed.

What's New for 2018

The 2018 Tiguan Limited is a carryover version of the older Tiguan, not the all-new one that arrived last year. Meant to be a less expensive alternative, the Tiguan Limited is limited to a single trim. The only major options are all-wheel drive and a Premium Package that adds a touch-screen display, cruise control and other features you’ll probably want.

Driving It

Driving Impressions

Though it’s older than every other small SUV in its class, the Tiguan Limited still holds its own in terms of powertrain and driving manners. That’s because it was above-average to begin with, and was among the first to use a turbocharged engine. In fact, at 200 horsepower, the turbocharged 4-cylinder in the Tiguan Limited actually has 16 more horsepower than the engine in the all-new model (though the new Tiguan has more torque). With a peppy engine, smooth 6-speed transmission and small footprint, the Tiguan Limited is fun yet easy to drive, and a cinch to maneuver. For a little extra spice, there’s a Sport mode that holds the gears longer. If you live in a cold-weather state or visit the mountains often, you’ll probably want the 4Motion all-wheel-drive system that enhances traction. In general, the Tiguan Limited has a smooth ride, but our evaluators did note a somewhat noisy cabin, and others found the head restraints intrusive. At a high of 26 mpg, the Tiguan Limited isn’t as fuel efficient as newer competitors. A Honda CR-V, for example, is rated up to 34 mpg.

Favorite Features

IMPRESSIVE WARRANTY
The Tiguan Limited may be an old body style, but it has gained VW’s new warranty. Dubbed “The People First Warranty,” it aims to reassure those wary of Volkswagen reliability with six years/72,000 miles of bumper-to-bumper coverage that’s also transferable.

HIGH-FIDELITY AUDIO
If you appreciate good audio quality, there’s another reason to spring for the Premium Package. It adds a USB input for flash drives and phone connective, plus the ability to play FLAC files, a type of audio codec with CD-quality sound.

Vehicle Details

Interior

The 2018 VW Tiguan Limited's 5-passenger interior is straightforward with simple yet logical controls and good fit and finish. Still, there’s little hiding that this Tiguan is the value play, especially if you don’t opt for the Premium Package. Cloth seats are the only choice, and the cabin looks Spartan. You won’t even get steering-wheel-mounted audio controls or a USB input. That will be remedied if you opt for the lone option package, which will also swap the small 5-inch touch-screen display for a 6.3-inch unit. Space has always been tight in the Tiguan due to its smaller size. Where the Honda CR-V boasts 75.8 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats folded, the Tiguan maxes out at 56.1 cubic feet. That’s about the same as the subcompact, less expensive Honda HR-V.

Exterior

With an overall length just over 174 inches, Volkswagen's Tiguan Limited is small even by compact-SUV standards. Citing the CR-V again as the benchmark example, the Honda is a half-foot longer. Compared to the new Tiguan, the Tiguan Limited is nearly a foot shorter. Still, we find the old body style of this Tiguan handsome after all these years. The Tiguan Limited's smooth, uncluttered lines and horizontal grille give it a squat appearance. Formerly standard but now costing extra, roof rails add some toughness and utility to the Tiguan Limited.

Notable Standard Equipment

As a mono-spec, value-priced model, the Tiguan Limited is pretty bare-bones, especially compared to its former self. But you will get what are now basics in new cars, like power windows/door locks, rearview camera, 8-way manual-adjust driver’s seat, a 40/20/40-split rear seat, and 16-inch steel wheels. The basic infotainment system consists of a 5-inch touch-screen display, Bluetooth connectivity and 8-speaker AM/FM/CD player audio system. Also included is VW’s impressive new warranty. If you want features like cruise control or even a USB port, however, you’ll have to opt for the Premium Package. Read on for details on that.

Notable Optional Equipment

Unless you are content with only the most basic of Tiguans, we recommend spending the extra $1,295 on the Premium Package. It bundles a larger, 6.3-inch touch-screen display, adds HD Radio and satellite radio, a USB port, cruise control, leather-wrapped steering wheel with buttons for audio and cruise control, roof rails, cargo cover, keyless access with push-button start, and VW’s Car-Net that runs certain smartphone apps. Also available is all-wheel drive in lieu of the standard front-wheel drive. Larger, 17-inch wheels are also offered.

Under the Hood

The Tiguan Limited may use an older engine, but it’s still impressive, making a robust 200 horsepower. The sole transmission is a 6-speed automatic with manual shift and sport modes. Front-wheel drive (FWD) is standard and all-wheel drive (AWD) is available. The Tiguan's towing capacity is rated at 2,200 pounds. The Tiguan Limited’s fuel economy lags that of competitors, and adding insult to injury, premium gasoline is recommended (but not required).

2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4
200 horsepower @ 5,100 rpm
207 lb-ft of torque @ 1,700 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/26 mpg

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Pricing Notes

Here’s the big appeal for the 2018 Tiguan Limited: It has a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting at $23,150 for a front-wheel-drive model, or $25,125 for an all-wheel-drive version. Loaded with the Premium Package and the upgraded wheels, an AWD Tiguan still slots in under $27,000. That’s a vast departure from its former self, which could run over $37,000 for a highly outfitted model. At these prices, the Tiguan Limited can undercut its fresher and more advanced competitors like the Honda CR-V, Ford Escape, Nissan Rogue and its own sibling -- the all-new Tiguan -- by a couple thousand dollars. Others closer in price include the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport and Hyundai Tucson. Before buying, check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying for their new Tiguan. Traditionally, the Volkswagen Tiguan’s resale value has significantly trailed that of its rivals.

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