Volkswagen has an uncanny knack for recognising the notional epicentre of any vehicle class and then consistently dropping its cars on a sixpence right on top of it, in turn forcing every other manufacturer to move around them on the margins.

It’s done that for decades with its hatches and saloons and now it’s claimed the juiciest territory with its much younger SUV.

Matt Saunders Autocar

Matt Saunders

Road test editor
Practical, comfortable, smart: the Tiguan grows up as well as outwards

The Tiguan feels like everything the stereotypical British family would want from their everyday car.

Big enough to seat four adults in comfort and carry all the trappings of their lives, it also does refinement and driveability better than most rivals.

Whether you want power, off-road ability, dynamism, outstanding safety or multimedia sophistication, the Tiguan can probably provide it.

Probably, because so far we’ve only tested one example, which lacked a shade of engagement. Even so, you could still consider it the complete and definitive compact SUV – and many will.

As a result, we believe the Tiguan betters the Honda CR-V, Range Rover Evoque and the BMW X1, while the Ford Kuga is engaging enough to give it class honours – just.

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