2013 Volkswagen Tiguan Preview

Jeff Youngs | May 30, 2013
  • Turbocharged engine
  • EPA-estimated to achieve up to 26 mpg on the highway
  • Front- or all-wheel drive (FWD or AWD)
  • Up to 56.1 cubic feet of cargo space
  • 5-passenger seating
  • 2,200-pound towing capacity


Volkswagen's small Tiguan crossover, which competes with a range of models including the Nissan Rogue and Subaru Forester, has been carried over with only minor changes for the 2013 model year, including the cancellation of the short-lived LE trim level.

Exterior Features

As the lineup's entry-level model, the 2013 Volkswagen Tiguan S keeps things simple with 16-inch steel wheels, rear wiper, and a combination of chrome and black trim. Heated power-adjustable turn signal mirrors are the highlight of this Tiguan's exterior. Volkswagen also offers a Tiguan S with Sunroof variant that includes a power tilt/slide moonroof and 16-inch alloy wheels.

An available SE trim level mirrors the base Tiguan S, with the exception of 18-inch alloy wheels and heated windshield washer nozzles. Buyers who want a few extra creature comforts may want to shift their attention to the SE with Sunroof and Navigation, which, as its name suggests, includes the power moonroof.

Those amenities have also found a home with the 2013 Volkswagen Tiguan SEL, as have 19-inch alloy wheels, adaptive HID headlights, LED daytime running lights, power-folding mirrors with memory, and a sport-tuned suspension.

Interior Features

Unlike its exterior, the interior of the 2013 Tiguan S doesn't qualify as bare-bones. Here, car shoppers will find cruise control, an 8-speaker sound system with CD player and auxiliary input jack, Bluetooth connectivity and streaming audio, and a glovebox cooler. The Tiguan S also features aluminum trim, cloth upholstery, front seats with 8-way adjustment, 40/20/40 split-folding rear seat, folding front passenger seat, and a leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel. The S and S with Sunroof models offer the same standard interior features.

Opting for the mid-level Tiguan SE avails buyers to a broader assortment of standard items, including leatherette upholstery, heated front seats with power recline, and a premium sound system boasting HD and satellite radio service, touch-screen display, USB port, and iPod compatibility. The SE with Sunroof and Navigation adds a touch-screen navigation system.

For the top-of-the-line 2013 Tiguan SEL, VW has reserved leather upholstery, rearview camera, dual-zone climate control, power front seats with 12-way adjustment and driver's side memory, push-button start, and the navigation system.

Optional Features

All of the 2013 Volkswagen Tiguan's available features are included as standard equipment on the various trim levels, which means there are no optional equipment packages. However, a number of dealer accessories are offered, such as a rear spoiler, splash guards, and a trailer hitch, to name a few.

Under the Hood

Volkswagen equips the FWD 2013 Tiguan with a direct-injection, 2.0-liter, turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that produces 200 horsepower and 207 lb.-ft. of torque, all of which is delivered to the front wheels via a standard 6-speed manual transmission or 6-speed automatic featuring sport and manual-shift modes. All-wheel-drive capability is optional.

Fuel Economy

EPA fuel-economy estimates for the 2013 Volkswagen Tiguan are:

  • Tiguan FWD with manual transmission: 18/26/21 mpg (city/highway/combined)
  • Tiguan FWD with automatic transmission: 21/26/23 mpg
  • Tiguan AWD with automatic transmission: 20/26/23 mpg


The 2013 Volkswagen Tiguan's standard safety features include 6 air bags, traction control, 4-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, electronic brake-force distribution, and brake assist. All Tiguan models also come with a brake disc wipe system that causes brief and light contact between the calipers and discs, resulting in optimal stopping capability in wet conditions.

In crash tests conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the 2013 Volkswagen Tiguan received an overall rating of 4 (out of 5) stars. In tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the 2013 Volkswagen Tiguan received a "Good" rating--the Institute's highest--for moderate overlap frontal-impact crash protection, but a "Moderate" rating for small overlap frontal-impact crash protection; the Tiguan also received a "Top Safety Pick" designation from the Institute.


Similar to several luxury cars, the 2013 Volkswagen Tiguan features an electric parking brake that's actuated with the touch of a button and not a pull of the more traditional handle typically located between the front seats.
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