SUVs are the flavour of season in India. Due to their high ground clearance and better approach and departure angles, they are suitable for all terrains. Then there's the high seating position and, of course, the brag value. As a result, most people now prefer driving SUVs.
Catering to market demands, manufacturers are also expanding their SUV portfolio across categories. Thus, when the Volkswagen Group decided to rethink their 'India strategy,' it's only natural that they would choose an SUV to lead the charge. VW even changed its tagline to 'SUVW'. Let us find out what recently launched Taigun has on offer to propel VW's India 2.0 strategy.
The Taigun's interior design is similar to Volkswagen's other luxury models. Similar to the bigger T-Roc, chrome highlights and light-colored materials wrap around the dash, while a flat centre console and a massive touchscreen infotainment system stand out. The cabin is simple, with clean lines and lots of edgy touches.
Quality and finish may be a worry for you. The quality is generally satisfactory, but it might have been far better for the money. The buttons on the steering wheel and doors lack the strong tactile feel seen on other VW products, and the console, even in this top-spec GT version, contains an excessive amount of dummy buttons, and it's never a good thing for first impressions.
VW Taigun features class leading wheelbase, which is visible once sitting in the second row. However, ergonomics are flawless; there is plenty of space for your stuff on the centre console, armrest, and door pads. Spacious front seats have firm cushioning, ample support and lateral bolstering. There's plenty of headroom, too—access to the back seats is straightforward by the spacious entrance and door opening. Even with the front seat set to a 6-footer's preferences, there is enough legroom at the back.
Rear seat has sufficient contour to maintain your position and a comfortable backrest angle. It offers an ample amount of under-thigh support. What's not so great is the Taigun's limited shoulder space. Because the space is so limited, it will never be comfortable for three people to sit at the back.
While it does not have the largest boot in its class, it does provide a spacious cargo area with a low loading lip height, an unobtrusive boot space, and 60:40 split-folding seats.
If one could describe the Taigun's appearance in a single word, it would be classy. Despite Volkswagen slapping on a lot of chrome from all angles, it's done tastefully and fits well with the overall design language. The headlights are flush with the grille and feature an all-LED setup. The lower variants, on the other hand, will have a conventional bulb with multiple LED DRLs. Additionally, the bonnet has squared off for a more butch look. Being a GT Line model, you'll find immaculate GT badges on the grille, boot, and side fenders. All of these components combine to give it a powerful look.
From the side, the most striking features are the GT Line's 17-inch alloy wheels with exposed red brake callipers. Properly sporty. From this viewpoint, it has many features with the Skoda Kushaq (its platform twin), such as the glass area, body lines, door handles, and cladding - yet the Taigun stands apart due to its distinctive front and rear end style.
At the rear, the connected tail lights are the notable feature, which is standard across the range. Other design features include the rear tail lamp panel, chrome on the bumpers, and the "Taigun" lettering. Despite this, the Taigun looks understated and attractive. Overall, it has the appearance of a Volkswagen.
Engine and performance
Buyers will have an option of two petrol engines – a 1.0 TSI three-cylinder with 114bhp/178Nm or a 1.5-liter TSI four-cylinder with 148bhp/250Nm. The 1-liter is available with a six-speed manual transmission or a torque converter, while the 1.5 is available with a six-speed manual transmission or a seven-speed DSG.
With the pulling power of the 1.5 TSI Taigun, it's no slouch in any scenario. Gently press your foot down, and the engine unleashes a storm of low-end torque when you need it. Indeed, there is plenty of grunt over 2,000rpm, which enables the Taigun to accelerate quickly.
With this much torque coming effortlessly, darting in and out of traffic gaps is effortless in this car. On the highway, the powerful pull is noticeable even at top speeds of triple digits. Without a doubt, the Taigun 1.5's standout feature is the DSG automatic transmission.
The 7-speed DSG isn't as common in VW's lineup as it used to be, but it's always up for the task, whether it's a leisurely cruise around town or a fast adrenaline-fueled drive across your favorite set of road. The DSG is excellent in 'D' mode, effortlessly shifting up and early in the rev range to enhance fuel efficiency. However, once the lever is down to 'S,' everything changes, and the engine begins to scream incessantly just before each upshift. As is usual, the gearshifts are deceptively rapid.
In comparison to earlier versions of the DSG gearbox, there is less hesitation in stop/start traffic and downshifts are also more masked. When operated at part throttle, this transmission shifts early in the torque zone, resulting in fast acceleration.
When it comes to appearance, Volkswagen SUV is classy. It seems better built than its key rivals including the Creta, but falls short in fit and finish than the Polo and Vento. However, the features and safety equipment available are a significant improvement. The features are outstanding, but the Taigun GT's drive have is the most impressive aspect of this package.