Currently reading: Nearly new buying guide: Volkswagen Tiguan
Space, style and reliability make the Mk2 Tiguan a strong second-hand buy

Take one Golf, raise it up, give it a roomier and more practical body and voilà: you’ve got a Volkswagen Tiguan. The SUV even shares many of the same engines with its Volkswagen hatchback sibling but optional four-wheel drive, called 4Motion, is available on most versions.

The point is, the reasons you might buy a Volkswagen Golf – its restrained good looks, quality build, comfortable driving experience, smooth and economical engines, good level of standard equipment and easy resale – are why you might also buy a Tiguan, plus a few more. They include extra space and a roomier boot with the possibility of sliding and folding the back seats to create a load space of up to 1655 litres.

The Mk2 Tiguan under the spotlight here was launched in 2016. Prices start at around £11,000 for a 2016-reg Volkswagen Tiguan 2.0 TDI 150 SE with 96,000 miles, or make that £14,500 with 46,000 miles. With 148bhp on tap and at least 50mpg in everyday motoring, this model and the SE Nav version are plentiful on the used market. The standard six-speed gearbox is smooth but the DSG, a dual-clutch automatic, brings an extra level of refinement and is more economical.

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Basic S trim is cheaper and still has air-con, alloy wheels and an 8.0in touchscreen but SE and SE Nav, which morphed into Vokswagen Tiguan Match in 2018, add larger alloys, more driver aids, privacy glass and mirror linking for your phone. SE L spoons on climate control, a panoramic sunroof and a 12.3in TFT display, while top-spec VW Tiguan R-Line adds a bodykit. You’d need to want all this stuff, though, because they’re considerably more expensive than SE versions. For instance, a 2016-reg Volkswagen Tiguan 2.0 TDI 150 SE L with 78,000 miles comes in at £15,500.

These higher trims introduce more powerful but less economical engines in the shape of the 187bhp 2.0 TDI and 237bhp twin-turbocharged VW Tiguan 2.0 BiTDI, both with 4Motion four-wheel drive. The lesser-powered unit gets our vote.

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The most powerful petrol-engined versions at this level are the 2.0 TSI 190 and 230 4Motion DSG. The 190 can do 0-62mph in 7.7sec but don’t expect much more than 35mpg. Neither is numerous on the used market and prices start at a stiff £19,500 for a 2016-reg TSI 190 R-Line DSG with 80,000 miles.

Lower down the power chain are the 123bhp and punchier 148bhp 1.4 TSI petrols. They’re reasonably plentiful, with the 148bhp model being a good choice if you live near a city threatening a diesel ban. Prices are from around £15,500 for a 2016-reg 1.4 TSI 150 SE Nav with 32,000 miles.

In 2019, these petrol models were replaced by slightly more economical 1.5 TSI Evo engines. Later the same year, the low-power and extremely rare 113bhp 2.0 TDI 115 was ditched in favour of a 113bhp 1.6 TDI.

Us? We’d go for a 2016-reg 2.0 TDI 150 or 1.4 TSI 150 in SE Nav trim and enjoy the Golf life with a better view and a bigger boot but about the same fuel economy.

Top spec pick

R-Line: New, this spec takes Tiguan prices to silly heights but that’s why you’re buying used, when you can enjoy its bodykit, 20in alloy wheels and Active Info Display for less money.


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Recalls There have been a surprising number, ranging from collapsing seat backrests to incorrect fuses, so check they've been actioned.

Engine Some owners have reported coolant leaks, so keep an eye out for these. 

Transmission Some owners have complained about issues with the DSG gearbox so be sure to check that changes are smooth and quiet and that the gearbox doesn't 'thump' when the vehicle comes to a stop. Pulling away can be a little jerky even with a healthy ’box but that’s more an issue with throttle control.

Interior If a sunroof is fitted, check it's watertight and for damp carpets. 


Need to know

The optional Dynamic Chassis Control system will have cost the first owner around £800 and is worth seeking out. It offers three ride settings: Sport, Comfort and Normal. Comfort mode takes the edge off the slightly firm suspension, especially at low speeds around town on poor roads.

SE spec goes one better than basic S by enabling smartphone mirroring in the touchscreen display. For the best media set-up, look for Discover Nav Pro plus the optional Volkswagen Media Control.

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Our pick

VW Tiguan 2.0 TDI 150 SE Nav: With decent economy, a good specification and prices from £11,500, this mid-spec version is the best all-rounder. If you need four-wheel drive, there’s a sprinkling of 4Motion versions.

Wild card

VW Tiguan 2.0 BITDI 240 Line DSG: This is the fastest diesel version of the Tiguan. It has 237bhp on call and can crack 0-62mph in 6.5sec. Prices start at around £24,000 for a 2017-reg example with 40,000 miles and all the trimmings.

Ones we found

2016 Volkswagen Tiguan 2.0 TDI SE, 96,000 miles, £11,000

2017 Tiguan 2.0 TDI SE Nav, 58,000 miles, £15,495

2018 Tiguan 1.4 TSI SE Nav, 17,000 miles, £18,299

2019 Tiguan 1.5 TSI Evo Match, 3000 miles, £22,750


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sabre 22 September 2021

Reliability attracts buyers of nearly new Tiguan SUV, according to this article. Alas, 2021 What car? (Autocar sister magazine) reliability survey puts the Tiguan at position 17 out of 28 family family SUVs. The last 3 are SUVs made by JLR, a company that believes that reliability does not sell. So, no. 17 out of 25 means mediocre reliability. 

scotty5 9 January 2020

Who researches these things?

Normally I'd complain that a car with 96,000 miles can hardlybe described as 'nearly new', however on this ocassion I'd further point out how utterly useless these 'nearly new' articles really are.

That's a cracking deal you found - a used 2019 Tiguan 1.5tsi EVO Match with 3000 miles for £22750.

Or you could save yourself £750 and buy a brand spanking new 2020 Tiguan 1.5tsi EVO Match for £22,000  ( via DriveTheDeal - other brokers / garages may offer even less ).