2018 Volkswagen Tiguan Limited Review
Volkswagen Tiguan Limited model years
Which Tiguan Limited does Edmunds recommend?
There's not much to think about when buying the Tiguan Limited. Make sure to get one with the optional Premium package since it adds some desirable features, including keyless ignition and entry, cruise control and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.
Edmunds' Expert Review
- Premium interior materials
- Cabin is quiet at highway speeds
- Limited cargo space and rear-seat legroom
- Subpar fuel economy
- Lackluster crash test results
- No high-tech accident avoidance features available
- The Tiguan Limited is the new name for the previous-generation Tiguan
- Less standard equipment compared to last year
- Part of the first Tiguan generation introduced for 2009
The Volkswagen Tiguan Limited's turbocharged engine is plenty powerful for commuting and passing on a highway, and its six-speed automatic transmission shifts smoothly and quickly. Handling is secure but not particularly athletic.
The cabin stays quiet at highway speeds, and rough pavement is ably smoothed out by the Tiguan Limited's suspension. The front seats should be comfortable on long drives, too.
There is an abundance of headroom all around, but rear occupants will find their legs a little more pinched (especially with taller folks up front) than they would in most rivals. The reclining rear seat is certainly welcome. Its sliding functionality allows you to bring kids a little closer to the front or free up more cargo space.
Even with the seats slid forward, there's only 23.8 cubic feet available — an average-size competitor such as the Mazda CX-5 has a lot more. Putting the rear seats down yields only 56.1 cubic feet, making it one of the smallest compact crossovers. It's barely more capacious than subcompact SUVs such as the Jeep Renegade.
Most helpful consumer reviews
2.0T 4dr SUV (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)
I purchased this car back in August 2019. It was a year old with 13,000 miles on the odometer. I was cross-shopping this with a similarly equipped '18 Kia Sportage. Ultimately, I chose the VW due to the 6-year bumper-to-bumper warranty (that is fully transferable), Roadside Assistance, spare tire (the Kia had a stupid fix-a-flat kit), and lower insurance premium ($50 less a month versus the Kia). How I would rate it: -Ride/Suspension: 5/5. Surprisingly comfortable and composed on Florida's pockmarked roads. Suspension feels tight as a drum. -Handling: 4/5. Highway feel is effortless but around town it can feel a bit cumbersome and light. -Interior: 4/5. Great interior materials and trim pieces, even though it is an older interior from VW. -Engine/Transmission: 3.5/5. Engine sounds gruff at low speeds but is eerily silent on the highway. Transmission is a bit quick to shift at low speeds and sometimes dawdles if there is not enough input from the driver. But when it's right, it's right. One of the better 6-speeds. -Fuel Economy: 3.8/5. I'll preface this by saying I spend about 65% of my time on the highway. On the highway I can expect to get 29-30 MPG consistently and in the city I can get around 22. Combined I am averaging almost 27-28 MPG on premium fuel (the only drawback). Overall, yes, the new one is a lot more exciting but it looks bloated in my opinion. The Limited works just fine for me and I have the peace of mind with the warranty and service intervals that are better than most of the competition (10k miles for oil changes).
2.0T 4Motion 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)
I selected this model because I wanted a small vehicle that could still handle well in all weather conditions and offered a modest towing capacity. So far, the Tiguan Limited has been the perfect fit within my price range. Note that I haven't owned the car long enough to know much about its reliability and long-term performance. I can say some things about it, from my first month of ownership: The best thing is having extra power when I need it (with the sports-boost mode, I no longer fear merging or matching traffic speeds). The crossover size fits nicely in my garage and provides ample storage for my small family. Although the car is not as stylish as other small SUVs, I managed to get mine in blue (very rare for the Limited), and that's given it a bit more charm. My biggest complaints are the seats and the air conditioning -- mine has the cloth interior and it's very scratchy. Also, the seats may not be comfortable for people under a certain height. The problem with the AC is the vents have almost no pivot range. It's practically impossible to get airflow where you want it.
2.0T 4dr SUV (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)
Everything is great, except for the gas mileage. Braking is a little weak. Kids love it. Comfort for normal sized adults.
2.0T 4Motion 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)
I've had mine for about a year/8000k. Nothing bad has happened yet. This SUV has a 6 year warranty, so I'm not too worried about VW's spotty reliability record. Also a comfort is the tried and proven 2.0L turbo charged motor. VW has been using some iteration of this motor for a long time. The 6 spd. automatic transmission is Hungarian built with the rest of the SUV being made in Germany according to the sticker. The motor is strong, and the Tiguan limited 4motion seems much quicker and stable than many competitors. Getting to freeway speeds and slowing back down again is enjoyable and easy. At freeway speeds lane changes are nimble for an SUV. Since this is an AWD the mileage is not as good on some front wheel drive SUV's. VW estimates it at about 21 mpg. I see about 20, but I do drive a bit more aggressively. The body panels are a bit thin, but that is also common among modern cars. The AC doesn't get cold enough for my wife, but I think it is fine. Visibility is fair. The transmission in regular drive mode seems to shift too much for my liking, especially in traffic. ***18,000 mile update*** I've had this for a while longer so I thought I would update my review. Braking for an emergency stop takes too long, and the abs kicks in pretty quick. The Tiguan could benefit from wider tires, and bigger calipers, and rotors. The automatic transmission in regular driving mode makes me crazy so I almost always drive in sport mode. Absolutely never used less than premium fuel, and change your oil between 5000 miles, and 7500 miles, not 10,000 like the manual says, unless you want carbon fouling on the intake valves. I didn't realize that direct injection engines had such a problem with carbon build up. To combat this, I put Seafoam in the crank case about 100 miles before I plan on an oil change, and I run it through the fuel system. We'll see if that helps. I also only use premium fuel. The Tiguan is still very comfortable for my 5'11 315 pound wide body. I have a 54" waist, and 54" chest. My hips and shoulders still have plenty of room, and the seats don't hurt my back. I have 3 herniated discs, and 2 vertebrae that were fractured. They all give me trouble. Some have noted that there isn't much cargo space compared to other SUV's. That is true, but it isn't why I bought the Tiguan Limited. I bought it because I fit in it, and it was fun to drive, and it was comfortable. That is also why I didn't care about the comparably poor fuel mileage, which has stayed the same. I get about 21 mpg. At 18,000 miles everything still works and looks like new. The stereo speakers are broken in now, and sound tons better. They were a bit sharp before, but now have loosened up. The odd smell it had when it was new is also gone. I did have the cabin filter changed. I think that cleared it up. It would have 5 stars if it got better mileage, had a less shifty transmission, and stopped better under stress. I like the looks of the Tiguan Limited over the looks of the new Tiguan. I wish VW would not charge to fix the carbon build up problem since it is their engineering that causes it. From what I understand at around 60,000 miles if you have the carbon build up problem, it costs around $800 to have them fix it. Hopefully with my maintenance, premium fuel usage, and Italian tune ups, I won't have the problem. I might even trade it off for a Toyota Camry before the 60,000 mile mark. That is when the warranty runs out. Come on VW, I want to love the cars you make, but the reliability needs to be there.
Features & Specs
Our experts like the Tiguan Limited models:
- Antilock Braking System
- Prevents the locking up of the wheels and tires (skidding) even when maximum brake pressure is applied.
- Electronic Stability Control
- Helps keep the Tiguan Limited in control during situations of reduced traction, such as a slide or a fishtail.
- Side Curtain Airbags
- Protects the heads and upper bodies of front and rear occupants in instances of a side collision.