May 2017 C! Issue 186 Vol. 15

When we first saw the VW Tiguan locally, it was a very welcome sight. It seemed to tick all the right boxes. Right brand, right configuration, right height. It proved pretty popular for the brand here. Yet something seemed not perfect.

Now we have a new one. Which, in true Volkswagen tradition, looks kind of like the old one. This is good because you don’t prematurely age your cars. The changes aren’t so drastic that you suddenly feel that your old ride is an eyesore. True, the company could make a whole lot of design language changes that might make people more inclined to trade in the old for the new. However, as someone that tends to keep cars for a pretty long time, I appreciate the fact that I won’t look like an idiot (for that reason, anyway) driving something so dated ten or fifteen years down the line. There are sports sedans I love in terms of performance and like in terms of design but can’t see them looking timeless in a decade or two.

So now to things like the new Tiguan. You aren’t going to see a lot of drastic change, but also you should feel the same about the looks pretty far into the near future. The key changes to this car though are underneath. They really matched the engine and the transmission very well. Way better than in the previous model, which had a bigger engine but a less technologically-forward transmission. Now, perhaps because the Tiguan is using a smaller and more efficient engine, they needed to put in a very intelligent transmission. Given all they have to do to eke power out of the small plant, what surprised me most personally was just how smooth the thing was. We have all these great technologies available today, yet still, they don’t always come together correctly. Here is an example of how they do. The next engine coming up will be a bigger diesel, and though diesels aren’t always my go-to choice I do still tend to lean towards the “more displacement equals more fun” side of the scale. With this vehicle though, what would move me the most would be that I just wouldn’t want to give up that smoothness. So it isn’t always about parts and numbers and stats, it’s about the vision, the consumer and providing them with what they want based on what you want to produce. Ah, maturity.

Oh, and we also went to play in a toy factory. The Tamiya plastic model factory in Cebu. So we haven’t really grown up all that much after all.

Editor-In-Chief / Managing Director