Volkswagen SUVs

Can't pick between the Volkswagen SUVs? Get to know your T-Roc from your Touareg with our guide

Murray Scullion
Oct 31, 2018

SUVs, or Sport Utility Vehicles, have come a long way over the years. They stem from humble beginnings, when all they needed to be was big, rugged, and with off-road ability. But over the years, this has been dashed in favour of more sophistication and luxury. 

Although this is up for debate, the SUV can trace its lineage back to the USA. Cars like the Jeep Station Wagon, Ford Bronco, and AMC Eagle (Google it) combined truck-like hauling levels with four-wheel-drive, and a car-like interior. Despite being forward thinking, these cars were, at best, quite agricultural.

Contemporary SUVs are very different propositions. They’re billed as sophisticated do-all machines capable of tackling the great outdoors with the kids and the dogs in the back, while everyone sits with heated seats on listening to Spotify.

There are five SUVs in Volkswagen’s burgeoning SUV line-up. Its newest and smallest offering is the T-Cross. This is SUV in shape, but it could be argued that it's more of a crossover as it isn’t available with four-wheel drive.

Up next is the T-Roc, which is a bit like a bigger, higher version of the Volkswagen Golf. Four-wheel-drive is an option on this.

The T-Roc sits below the Tiguan, Volkswagen’s third most-popular car (behind the Golf and Polo). This is an all-together larger and more expensive proposition than the T-Cross or T-Roc, and is a more traditional SUV than a crossover.

The Tiguan Allspace is a longer version of the Tiguan, and it can be optioned with seven-seats.

Finally, the largest SUV Volkswagen sells is the new-for-this-year VW Touareg. It’s not only the biggest, but the poshest and most expensive too. All Touaregs come with four-wheel drive.

Volkswagen SUVs

Volkswagen T Cross

✔  Best Volkswagen SUV for tight parking spaces

Less good for getting up mountains

The T-Cross is the latest car to join Volkswagen's SUV range. It’s also its littlest and cheapest. For reference, it goes toe-to-toe with the likes of the Nissan Juke, Citroen C3 Aircross, and Seat Arona, and is a similar size.

It’s so new that it’s not actually on the roads yet - it’s due to go on sale in the UK early next year. It’s certainly won a lot of admirers online thanks to its chunky but cute looks and it’s practical too - it has a 385-litre boot, bigger than a VW Golf’s.

Although it’s not available with four-wheel-drive, VW reckons it’s a proper SUV rather than a crossover because its high-seating position and overall versatility is the number one priority with the car.

    

Volkswagen T-Roc

✔  Best Volkswagen SUV for stylish looks

Less good for interior quality 

Latest Volkswagen T Roc deals from £17,991
Finance from £224 per month

Next up is the T Roc. This is of similar ilk to the Seat Arona, Skoda Karoq, and Vauxhall Mokka X.

It’s a step up in terms of quality in comparison to these, but it is notably more expensive too. Engine choice is huge for this segment, there are three petrol (1.0-litre, 1.5-litre, and 2.0-litre) and two diesel (1.6-litre and 2.0-litre) engines. There are five trim levels to pick from too, as well as the option of an automatic or manual gearbox, as well as four-wheel-drive.

Interior plastics and materials don’t necessarily feel as premium as the price tag would suggest, but the entertainment kit is good. All cars come with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, while SE L trim and above cars get a digital dash that you can customise.
Volkswagen T-Roc buying guide

  

Volkswagen Tiguan

✔  Best Volkswagen SUV for mix of practicality and style 

Less good for value

Latest Volkswagen Tiguan deals from £19,990
Finance from £262 per month

While the T-Cross is so new it’s not actually out yet, and the T Roc is still a young buck, the Tiguan first took to British roads in 2008. It was then replaced by the current generation Tiguan in 2016.

So compared to the smaller VWs, the Tiguan has a bit more history behind it, and a bit more quality and space too. It’s cheaper than the likes the Land Rover Discovery Sport, BMW X3, and Mercedes GLC, and feels cheaper inside. However, it also is in competition with the Nissan Qashqai, Seat Ateca, and Ford Kuga - and it feels more premium than these.

Four-wheel-drive is on offer across the trim levels, however, if you’re looking to do any sort of off-roading the Touareg isn’t the best choice.
Volkswagen Tiguan buying guide

 

Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace

✔  Best Volkswagen SUV for seven-seat motoring

Less good for performance

Latest Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace deals from £26,451
Finance from £359 per month

Not only has VW carved out five cars to form its SUV lineup, it’s managed to make two cars from one.

The Tiguan Allspace is a longer Tiguan, and offers an additional 54mm of knee room and 60mm more legroom for people in the second row. It can also be had with seven-seats, making this the only Volkswagen SUV you can carry seven people in.

In the seven-seat version, the boot is 700-litres with the seats down, or 230-litres with them up. The five-seat version has a 760-litre boot, 60-litres over the seven-seat car, and 145-litres up on the regular Tiguan.

 

Volkswagen Touareg

✔  Best Volkswagen SUV for technology and space

Less good for fitting into tight parking spaces 

 Latest Volkswagen Touareg deals from £25,500
Finance from £362 per month

The Touareg is the most expensive Volkswagen SUV, and is also the most upmarket Volkswagen on offer currently. With all of the options ticked, the Toureg (from new) costs close to £63,000.

Although that seems expensive for a VW, you must remember that this shares the foundations of the more expensive Audi Q7, and vastly more dear Bentley Bentayga.

It feels like a premium product too. R Line Tech models get a curved 15-inch screen that sits in the middle of the dashboard, which flows into a 12-inch screen behind the wheel. This controls virtually everything on the car, and looks amazing too. It comes with a 3.0-litre diesel engine (petrols and hybrids are en route) and all get four-wheel-drive. It also has software which allows the driver to pick a predetermined programme that can change the suspension settings to help out in different off-road situations, snow and sand for instance.
Volkswagen Touareg buying guide

 

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