The second-generation VW Tiguan has taken the top spot for the most viewed review on Autocar for the week ending 12 February. See below to find out which models joined it in the top five.
The second-generation VW Tiguan is a pivotal car for the German manufacturer in more ways than one, as it looks to expand the range to reach new and lucrative markets, which its SUV competitors currently occupy. It is also the first all-new model to be launched since VW became embroiled in the diesel emissions scandal at the tail-end of last year. No pressure on the shoulders of this new Tiguan then.
Having shifted more than 2.6million of its predecessors since its introduction in 2007, VW has tasked the Tiguan to build on that success, stating that a fully-fledged seven-seat version and a two-door coupé will be added to the range. Whether a big Tiguan will make it to the UK remains up in the air, but a Range Rover Evoque challenger is certainly on the cards; it's expected to be in showrooms by 2018.
As for the engine line-up, at launch, the Tiguan will be available with a 178bhp TSI engine, or a 148bhp 2.0-litre diesel, which is available with VW’s four-wheel drive 4Motion system. This will be supplemented with 123bhp and 147bhp 1.4 TSI and a 217bhp 2.0-litre TSI petrol engines, while the 2.0-litre diesel oil burner will be available in 114bhp, 188bhp and 236bhp forms.
Second in the list is Audi’s new A4 Avant, this time, tested with a turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol engine.
The Avant’s engine line-up mirrors that of its saloon stablemate, which means buyers have a wealth of four-pot petrols and six-pot diesels to choose from. In this review we match Audi’s 178bhp petrol engine to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox, with the power being delivered to the front wheels.
Although diesels will always be the big seller in this class, we have been impressed by the smooth nature of Audi's petrol engines. Find out our verdict on this practical estate.
The JE Motorworks Zulu2, sees JE Engineering take a standard 90 or 110 and modify it in a drastic fashion. The list of alterations includes shuffling the beefy four-pin differential from the rear axle to the front, fitting a bespoke stainless steel exhaust system, and the small matter of fitting a 475bhp 4.7-litre engine based on Jaguar’s supercharged 4.2-litre V8.
Sounds rather epic. sSee how we got on behind the wheel of this beefed up Defender 110.
The Suzuki Swift is a likeable supermini, and we certainly adore the Japanese firm’s Dualjet petrol engine. So in this test we try an updated version of the all-wheel drive Swift to see if it’s a match made in heaven.
Being indulgent and opting for the 1.2-litre Dualjet petrol engine and Suzuki’s four-wheel drive system means you have no choice but to accept the range-topping SZ4 trim. It means you get luxuries such as climate control, keyless entry, sat-nav, Bluetooth connectivity, cruise control and automatic headlights.
Alongside this generous amount of kit, the ride height has been increased by 25mm and the Swift is fitted with rugged looking mouldings, while the engine is said to improve fuel economy by 7.5mpg and reduce emissions to 111g/km.
The Swift 4x4 idea has been on the market for some time. Find out what difference the Dualjet engine makes to the all-wheel drive Suzuki.
Last in the list this week is a super-luxury saloon aimed at the seriously wealthy who are looking for a rare car to be chauffeured around in. It is the Aston Martin Lagonda Taraf.
With the likelihood of only 150 Tarafs set to be made before production ends at the end of 2016, it is unlikely that many people will clap eyes on the £685,000 Aston in the flesh. But the Taraf represents a more important juncture for Aston Martin, as it revives the Lagonda name.
Anyway down to what the super wealthy can expect from the Lagonda Taraf. It is powered by Aston’s naturally aspirated 6.0-litre V12 powering the rear axle via an eight-speed transaxle, as it does in the Rapide, DB9 and Vanquish.
As for the interior, it is much the same as you would find in the Rapide, but the Taraf is 200mm longer, which counts in the rear accommodation stakes where Aston Martin has focussed much of its attention. Passengers can enjoy ample leg room and comfortable, leather-upholstered seats, which unfortunately don’t recline.
Enough with the aesthetics, it’s time to find out whether the Lagonda Taraf is another car from Aston Martin’s sporty blueprint or cut from another cloth.
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