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Little brothers have a problem with being overshadowed by their older brother. The 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan is no exception.
2009 Volkswagen TiguanEnlarge Photo
It's too bad really as the Tiguan is a much better all around vehicle than the Touareg, except for off-road capability. It's easier to navigate the concrete jungles with its smaller footprint, it isn't as thirsty, and it is quite a bit less expensive.
TheCarConnection.com's review on the 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan is quite good--as it should be, considering how long Volkswagen had to research competitive models before introducing their own small sport-utility vehicle. On styling it is praised for both its interior and upscale exterior while quite a few point out that it undercuts the price of the premium small sport-utilites like the BMW X3.
Moving to performance, we find that most feel the power from the 2.0 liter TSI is adequate but a bit thirsty with AWD; the Tiguan gets 18 mpg city and 24 mpg highway. This seems a bit low for a four-cylinder SUV but it's only 5 mpg off the mark of the 2009 Volkswagen Rabbit four-door automatic. It's also able to get to 60 mph in 7.8 seconds, which won't win many drag races but will allow you to grab that gap in traffic on your morning commute. Some reviews have commented that the suspension is a bit harsh but most feel that it has an appropriately sporty feel.
Interiors have long been a place where Volkswagen shines, and the Tiguan is no exception as it received praise for many aspects of the interior. Reviewers note its fit and finish, the quality of materials, and the thoughtful way in which things were laid out. The Tiguan also gets praise for the way the seats are molded for comfort but are not overly stiff, and praise for good headroom for all passengers. Well, all passengers except for the unlucky soul stuck in the middle of the back seat, where the usual drivetrain lump jacks the seat up an extra few inches.
The bottom line is that for just over $26,000, Volkswagen offers a very capable little sport-utility that has good styling, decent power, and an outstanding interior. This little brother may outshine his sibling after all.