For decades, Volkswagen has been producing excellent cars that are the picture of German engineering. Their cars have been wildly successful in the United States, and have even created quite the subculture of car clubs for fans of modified Volkswagen models. However, for true fans, there has always been something missing, the SUV. Outside of the uber popular Vanagon, which hasn’t been produced for U.S. sales in many years, VW has been missing an SUV in their lineup. Meaning the “people’s car” in German, the Volkswagen brand has been keeping up with the people pleasing business since the mid-1900s.
The missing part of their lineup must have been felt by Volkswagen as well, and in 2002, they released the Touareg. Accompanied by hilarious commercials asking people to pronounce the name, the Touareg filled the void for many customers, and they started scooping them up off the market, totaling sales numbers in the U.S. of 16,000 units in 2003. It became clear that VW loyalists had been waiting for this vehicle’s release with baited breath, and soon the fans were clamoring for a small SUV option. In the 2008 model year, Volkswagen gave the people what they wanted with the release of the Tiguan.
The Touareg starts at just over $46,000 and is considered a luxury SUV. It features a 3.6L V6 engine that offers 280 horsepower and handle all the demands placed on a traditional SUV. It offers maximum power, all-wheel drive, and a top of the line steering system to harness all of the engine’s power. An 8-speed automatic transmission and 7700 pounds of towing capacity will allow drivers to utilize their SUV to its full capacity without remembering that it’s supposed to be a luxury vehicle. Anything your SUV can do, the Touareg can do better.
The Touareg comes in five different trim levels, each offering a handful of standard features and upgrading the vehicle with each jump up the trim line. The Touareg Sport model is available by order only, which means your typical dealer will not carry the model on their lots. The V6 Sport model with Technology adds standard rearview camera, hands-free liftgate, and navigation while the top of the line V6 Executive with Mallory Wheels adds an overhead view, 21’ inch wheels, and upgraded audio. The TDI model is offered in four different trim levels with an ultra-efficient diesel engine.
The Tiguan is the smaller and sportier option for those looking for less vehicle, but still needing the added cargo space that a car doesn’t offer. With enough get up and go that you’ll arrive at your destination without hesitation, the Tiguan offers a 200 horsepower and a six speed automatic. There is optional all-wheel drive, and a specifically designed sporty suspension. The Tiguan 2.0T offers a standard design in six different trim levels, each designed to meet specific needs. There is also the option of the Tiguan R-Line which is a designed to be a little bit sportier and slightly more aggressive than the regular Tiguan model.
Inside the Tiguan cabin, you’ll forget that Volkswagen hasn’t always been committed to creating SUVs. With attractive features like push-button start, heated front seats, and rearview camera, the Tiguan has everything that you’re looking for in an SUV. Boasting nearly 57 cubic feet of available cargo space, this small size SUV seems like it’s anything but. 40/20/40 split folding rear seats with an available sliding feature, make hauling the weekly groceries a snap, but can also haul that new office chair you decided to purchase. The optional flat folding front passenger also makes it possible to pick up that new area rug you’ve had your eyes on at Target.
Both models offer their fair share of space, interior upgrades, and technology and the choice of which vehicle to choose is all dependent on your needs and sense of style. The Touareg and Tiguan both offer the freedom to carry all of the things you hold dear in your life whether that’s your family or the fabulous yard sale finds you’re searching for every weekend. Each model offers the freedom to enjoy your daily commute as much as if you were going on a fabulous vacation to a far-away land.
They may not have always been known for their SUVs, but Volkswagen is making sure that they will be from now on. Whether you’re looking for a luxury SUV that can tow anything you need, or a smaller and sportier model with massive cargo capacity, Volkswagen has a model to suit your needs. Take a journey in the people’s car, and enjoy every single minute of your life inside it!