Volkswagen Taos vs. Volkswagen Tiguan

By

Automotive Editor

Willis is a freelance writer based out of Philadelphia. Born and raised in Colorado, he graduated from Williams College. When he's not writing about cars or the outdoors, he spends his time rock climbing or reading with his two cats.


, Automotive Editor - June 25, 2021

Like many manufacturers, Volkswagen continues to expand its lineup of crossovers to meet consumer demand. The latest addition is the 2022 VW Taos, which slots just below the existing Tiguan SUV.

What sets the two apart? Here's a brief comparison of key specs and features to help you decide which one you should buy.

See a side-by-side comparison of the Taos & Tiguan »

What the Taos Gets Right

As the smaller vehicle, the Taos will start cheaper than the Tiguan. In base form, the Taos will set buyers back about $2,300 less.

While the Taos is all-new, the current Tiguan is about five years old. Next year’s Tiguan will get a refresh for styling and tech, but the Taos rolls on a fresher platform.

That extends to the engine, which is a new 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder unit. Its 184 pound-feet of torque comes on quickly, and it’s rated up to 31 mpg combined. That’s much better than the Tiguan’s 25 mpg combined.

The Taos may be smaller than the Tiguan, but it’s hard to tell from the inside. Rear passengers get a healthy 37.9 inches of legroom, which nearly matches the Tiguan. To our eyes, the Taos exterior is a fresher design.

What the Tiguan Gets Right

The Tiguan is more than nine inches longer than the Taos, and it puts the length to use in its trunk. The Tiguan can fit up to 37.6 cubic feet of cargo with the seats in place, or 73.5 once they’re folded. The Taos maxes out at 28.1 and 66.3 cu ft respectively. The Tiguan is even available with a third row, albeit a small one.

To help move its extra bulk, the Tiguan uses a larger, more powerful engine. The Tiguan’s 2.0-liter turbo engine makes 184 horsepower and 221 pound-feet of torque, both substantially more than the Taos.

The Tiguan may have a higher base price, but in upper trims, the difference between the two models is slim. Even in base, the Tiguan justifies its price with extra standard features. Those include smartphone compatibility as well as useful safety tech like automatic emergency braking, neither of which are included on the Taos.

Niches Within Niches

The crossover market is growing even more complex as models proliferate. The Taos and the Tiguan share much in common, and they’ll serve the same basic function for many buyers. The decision may come down to details like design, size, and incentives.

In general, the Tiguan offers slightly more power and practicality at a slightly higher cost. The Taos is sleeker and more efficient but doesn’t offer the same utility or standard features.

Our Verdict: Volkswagen Tiguan

The new Taos has yet to prove itself, while the Tiguan has earned its stripes as a reliable and practical runabout. The Taos has many of the right ingredients, but its lack of standard safety tech is a downside these days. We’ll reserve final judgment until the Taos officially launches, but for now, we’d stick with the Tiguan.

Take a closer look at the Volkswagen Taos »

Take a closer look at the Volkswagen Tiguan »

Side-by-side comparison of features, pricing, photos and more!

, Automotive Editor

Willis is a freelance writer based out of Philadelphia. Born and raised in Colorado, he graduated from Williams College. When he's not writing about cars or the outdoors, he spends his time rock climbing or reading with his two cats.


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