2009 Volkswagen Tiguan SUV Review | Edmunds.com

2009 Volkswagen Tiguan SUV

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Volkswagen Tiguan Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.0 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 200 hp @ 5100 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 18/24 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan

  • With its European breeding, the new 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan promises a little different flavor in a mostly vanilla class.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Peppy turbo engine, composed handling, comfortable ride, upscale cabin ambiance, solid build quality.

  • Cons

    Shy on cargo space, pricey compared to the competition.

  • What's New for 2009

    The 2009 Tiguan is Volkswagen's first entry in the compact crossover SUV segment. It's based on VW's small-car platform and boasts a turbocharged engine and European-flavored driving dynamics.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (11 total reviews)  |  Write a Review

Love my little tiggi

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Vehicle: 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan SEL 4dr SUV (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)

I bought this car with 20k miles, and have put 10k in the 2 months I've had it. And i'm happy to report that I have not had any issues with it. Only problem I have is the squeeky/grinding of the brakes. or rattling when I suddenly step on them. It came with a navigation system that was installed by the first owner and it irritates me. radio wont come on when I want, cant hook up my ipod or hear music from my phone on pandora. And the fact that the radio shuts down and tells me "I am going over the speed limit kills me!! But overall I'm happy with it..

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

So many problems!!!!

by on
Vehicle: 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan SEL 4dr SUV (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)

I am just ending my 4 year lease and I have had so many issues with this car that have added up. Although the look of the car is very nice and it's fun to drive and I never had any major mechanical problems - I still had issue after issue with this car. A few weeks after I drove it off the lot the guage that showed how much gas I had in my tank was broken. I had to take it back twice for them to fix it. Since then my radio just goes off when it wants, the back-up camera stopped working, I had to get new tires and breaks, there is a horrible moisture problem and it always smells like mold, the AC doesn't come out cold .it goes on!I would stay away from this car ulnless you want a heacache

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Do not buy - lemon

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Vehicle: 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan SEL 4dr SUV (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)

This car is the biggest lemon i have ever purchased at 44000 miles i have had to spend over 2000 dollars in non warranty computer repairs on the car is still not fixed correctly. I am giving the car back early cause i am afraid of how much more this car will cost me if i keep it the last 8 months of my lease. I would rather give the car back and pay off the eat the rest of the lease. Do not buy

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Tiguan review at over 48,000

by on
Vehicle: 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan SEL 4dr SUV (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)

We have had this car for over two years and have driven it over 48,000 miles and have had only one problem. The right front head light assembly. The mechanic wrote it up as a problem of the internal mechanical malfunction of the headlight assembly. Other than that our Tiguan has been a pleasure to own and drive.

Awesome cuv! can't find a

by on
Vehicle: 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan SEL 4dr SUV (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)

Gotta write a review for this one. This car has a very nice firm ride, sporty look inside out. I love that big 13 cu. in. moonroof, gotta have it. It makes the car more open, airy, and relax while cruising. The 18 in. wheels are hot. Nice xenon headlights; it uses the same xenon lights as DRL (daytime running light). Quiet interior. Feel roomy inside with well designed spaces. It actually about 1 foot shorter in length than a 09 Honda Accord coupe, surprising!? Engine power is adequate; wish that it came with DSG transmission; and eventually TDI engine? Bluetooth is standard on 2010 models, but not 09! :( Dynaudio system w/ 600 watt upgraded for the 2010 models w/ 2 extra speakers.

Georgeous car

by on
Vehicle: 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan SEL 4dr SUV (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)

I moved up from a compact car to a compact SUV to accommodate my growing family and deal with the decaying CA roads. The Tiguan is right-sized for urban life in the Bay Area, quite compact exterior for nimble driving and parking, but a very spacious interior. In comparison, Rav4 and CRV are weird/dull/dated. I had hopes for the Forester but the interior was extremely cheap - read the reviews. The Tiguan is in a class of its own for build quality, design, and driving experience. More expensive yes but better value as I will be enjoying this for many years. The 2.0T engine is fantastic, I feel I have the GTI from my youth wrapped in a responsible family package with all safety features.

Full 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan Review

What's New for 2009

The 2009 Tiguan is Volkswagen's first entry in the compact crossover SUV segment. It's based on VW's small-car platform and boasts a turbocharged engine and European-flavored driving dynamics.


Talk about being late to the party. The hors d'oeuvres are long since gone, the DJ looks ready for bed and the revelers are doing the Electric Slide for the third time. Still, tardiness may not diminish the appeal of the 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan to the compact crossover SUV crowd.

Don't bother looking the name up in the dictionary. You won't find it, as it's a concoction from VW's marketing department. We're told the name's a melding of tiger and iguana, which nearly makes for an entire zoo, given that the Tiguan is based on the same platform as the VW Rabbit. The Tiguan gets VW's turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine -- the same sprightly workhorse that also sees duty in the GTI, GLI and Audi products such as the A4 and TT.

In general, the Tiguan doesn't stray too far from the typical compact SUV design. It seats five, is offered in front-wheel or all-wheel drive and has nearly all of the latest convenience and safety features. But the Tiguan does offer a neatly tailored Euro design as well as the high-grade cabin treatment for which Volkswagen has become known. It also boasts composed handling and a comfortable ride.

These aspects help the Tiguan stand out a bit at the crossover party. But is it enough? Well, for people who have bought VW products in the past, the Tiguan will no doubt be a hit. And those who like to drive will find its Teutonic driving dynamics appealing.

But there are some downsides, including a price tag at least a few thousand above comparable vehicles and a smallish cargo capacity. As such, you might find models like the Honda CR-V or Toyota RAV4 to be more practical. There's also the Nissan Rogue, which is similar in concept to the Tiguan but less expensive. Still, the 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan could be a nice alternative for discerning consumers looking for a little spice in a mostly bland segment.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan is a compact crossover SUV that's offered in three trims that all share the same powertrain. The base S includes 16-inch alloy wheels, full power accessories, an eight-speaker audio system with CD player and auxiliary jack, aluminum interior accents, eight-way manual adjustable front seats, air-conditioning, cruise control and a 60/40-split-folding rear seat.

The SE upgrade includes 17-inch alloy wheels, foglights, a roof rack, chrome exterior accents, deep-tinted glass, upgraded upholstery, heated front seats, a power driver seat, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, a trip computer and upgraded audio with a CD changer and satellite radio.

The top-shelf SEL comes with 18-inch alloy wheels, bi-xenon headlights, leather seating, a 12-way power driver seat with memory settings, a premium "Dynaudio" audio system, dual-zone climate control, rain-sensing wipers and an auto-dimming rearview mirror.

Options include rear side airbags, a towing package, a panoramic sunroof and a navigation system.

Powertrains and Performance

All Tiguans are powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 that makes 200 horsepower and 206 pound-feet of torque. The S can be had with either a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic transmission, while the SE and SEL are automatic only. The latter two trims are also available with VW's "4Motion" all-wheel-drive system.

Volkswagen estimates that the Tiguan can go from zero to 60 mph in fewer than 8 seconds, which would make it one of the quickest compact crossovers available. Its towing capacity of 2,200 pounds, however, is about 1,300 pounds less than V6-powered rivals.


Antilock disc brakes, stability and traction control, front-seat side airbags and full-length head curtain airbags are all standard. Side airbags for rear passengers are optional.

Interior Design and Special Features

In keeping with Volkswagen's reputation for fine cabins, the interior of the Tiguan boasts high-quality materials and tight-as-a-drum build quality. Real aluminum -- not silver-colored plastic -- enhances the premium feel. Most controls are large and well-placed, and the available navigation system boasts a large screen and a simple interface.

Firm, well-shaped seats offer proper support when logging miles on the interstate or slicing through a twisty two-laner. The reclining rear seat offers a 60/40-split design as well as a pass-through in the middle, which allows the Tiguan to carry long items and four passengers at the same time. The rear seat also slides fore and aft to improve either rear legroom or cargo space. With all the seats in use, the Tiguan offers a maximum of 16.6 cubic feet of cargo capacity, about the same as a large family sedan's trunk. With the second row folded down, maximum capacity measures 56.1 cubic feet, about 17 cubes shy of class leaders such as the CR-V and RAV4.

Driving Impressions

Spirited acceleration is almost always on tap thanks to the turbo-4's broad power band. In corners, the 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan's body remains poised. Most compact SUVs tend to skate over rough surfaces, but the Tiguan remains firmly planted while tracking steadily. To add an extra measure of durability for rough road use, there's high-strength steel in the frame plus heavy-duty dampers.

The Tiguan's electromechanically assisted steering does a decent job of imitating a traditional hydraulic setup. The assist starts soft and builds to a moderate amount of effort that won't tax even the skinniest of arms. There's not much effort needed for the brake pedal either, as it delivers plenty of stopping power with a modest push.

Talk About The 2009 Tiguan

Read more about the 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan

Gas Mileage


  • 18
  • cty
  • 24
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs