VW's Tiago review: Well-equipped and well-priced in a crowded market

TAIGO. Sounds like a footballer. But it’s not. It’s a car.

Yet another crossover/SUV from Volkswagen.


We’re up to seven models now: Touareg, Tiguan, Tiguan Allspace, T-Roc, T-Roc Cabriolet, T-Cross and Taigo. All beginning with a T.

Add the pure-electric ID4 and ID5 and that’s NINE. Good grief. They’re multiplying faster than the turbo-flu.

No doubt we’ll be discussing No10 in a week or two.

Now, I’ll try to keep this simple.

Taigo, like T-Cross, uses Polo parts. So it’s small, nippy, easy to park and own.

But because it’s a coupe crossover, it costs a little more than the T-Cross. And a little less than the bigger T-Roc. It starts at £22k.

To be fair, the cheapest version – called Life – is all you need.

It comes with 8in screens, adaptive cruise control, wireless phone charging, reversing camera, electric folding and heated door mirrors, black roof rails and LED lights.

This test car, the R-Line auto, has bigger alloys, bigger screens, individual drive modes and a bigger price tag, at £28k.

You don’t need it.

Key facts

VOLKSWAGEN TAIGO R-LINE

Price: £28,325

Engine: 1-litre turbo petrol

Power: 110hp

0-62mph: 10.9 secs

Top speed: 119mph

Economy: 47mpg

CO2: 134g/km

You do need what all Taigos have: Comfy seats, a decent-sized boot (440 litres, compared to 351 litres in a Polo), pull-up handbrake and a separate control panel for the air con. Unlike a Golf.

As for engines, no surprises, really. Taigo is petrol-only. The 1-litre three-cylinder turbo, doing 110hp, will be the most popular choice.

But you can also have 150 horses with a 1.5-litre four-cylinder engine.

Again, you don’t need it.

The 1-litre gallops along nicely and the quick steering makes it a breeze to thread through tight streets or country roads. And it betters 40mpg.

Ride comfort is also decent. The suspension does a good job of smoothing out our lumpy cheese-grater roads.

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There is one thing to note, though.

As with most baby SUVs, the Taigo is front-wheel-drive only. So even if you think you’re wearing Hunter wellies, you’re really in slippers.

The moment you show it a field of wet grass you’ll be going nowhere.

To sum up, then. The world doesn’t need another small but tall crossover. It really doesn’t.

But if you fancy a well-priced, well-equipped coupe crossover with full-width lights, check out Taigo. For not much Silva.

(Apologies to Thiago Silva.)

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