We had our first official look at the new Volkswagen Tiguan last month, when it was previewed to the media. Now, the second-generation Tiguan has been officially launched by Volkswagen Passenger Cars Malaysia (VPCM), and you can check it out at Volkswagen showrooms nationwide.

Unveiled at the 2015 IAA in Frankfurt, the new Tiguan sits on the VW Group’s modular MQB platform, which also underpins the current Golf. Compared to the original Tiguan that surfaced ten years ago (over 2.8 million units sold), this sequel has a larger footprint – 60 mm longer and 30 mm wider, with a 77 mm longer wheelbase – but the size increase comes with no weight penalty, as the new SUV is over 50 kg lighter than before.

Boot volume is 615 litres, which can be expanded to 1,655 litres with the rear seats fully folded (one motion). The rear seats are split 40:20:40 and can slide fore and aft. Even the front passenger seat can fold flat forward for long cargo. Airplane style fold up trays with cupholders, mounted on the front seat backs, are available for the rear passengers.

The wider body, reduced overall height (it sits 33 mm lower than the Mk1), sharper lines and that new family face also seen on the handsome Passat B8 means the new Tiguan is – to our eyes – significantly better looking than before. By the way, VW recently rolled out a seven-seat Tiguan Allspace, but this is the standard five-seat version and VPCM has no plans to bring the LWB in.

The front-wheel drive Tiguan (4Motion not offered here) is powered by a 1.4 litre TSI engine with 150 PS and 250 Nm of torque available from 1,500 to 3,500 rpm. The single turbo engine is mated to a six-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic gearbox. The official claimed fuel consumption is 6.7 litres per 100 km (14.9 km/l) in the European cycle. 0-100 km/h in 8.9 seconds.

The DSG used here is of the wet-clutch variety, something VPCM is keen to highlight in marketing materials. This is probably because the reputation of the seven-speed dry-clutch unit isn’t the best and just mentioning “DSG” alone may put off some. Traditionally, the oil-bathed DSG6 has been used in higher-powered applications.

The locally-assembled Tiguan is available in two trim levels – Comfortline and Highline. Visually, it’s pretty easy to differentiate between the two. The entry level machine comes with halogen reflector headlamps and 17-inch “Montana” alloys (215/65 tyres), while the Highline sports LED headlamps and daytime running lamps, plus 18-inch “Kingston” rims (235/55 tyres). The slimmer LED eyes of the Highline plus extra lashes of chrome on the grille and light cluster really makes a difference.

The rear end is less differentiated, as LED tail lamps and twin exhaust pipes are standard. The roof rails of the Comfortline is in black, Highline in silver.

Standard on the Comfortline are thing such as Park Distance Control (PDC, front and rear), auto lights and wipers “Rhombus” fabric upholstery, Composition Media eight-inch touchscreen head unit (with Bluetooth, SD card, USB, AUX-in, eight speakers) and steering paddle shifters.

Besides the above-mentioned exterior differences, the Highline adds on Dynamic Cornering Assist bending lights, keyless entry and push start, an electric tailgate that opens with a press of the key fob, “Vienna” combination leather interior, “Dark Grid” trim on the dashboard and door cards (silver in Comfortline), 12.3-inch Active Info Display digital instrument panel and three-zone climate control (vents and controls for rear passengers).

Also exclusive to the top variant are Park Assist 3.0 (parallel and perpendicular auto parking), cruise control and a Discover Media eight-inch touchscreen system. The latter has all of the Composition system’s functions, plus navigation and reverse camera. Ambient lighting and a 12-way electric driver’s seat with memory, too.

App Connect is optional for the Highline. With Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and MirrorLink, the software allows for smartphone app connection to the car’s infotainment system, and is available at an introductory price of RM699 for a limited time (normal price RM1,099).

The Tiguan – named in Euro NCAP’s Best in Class Cars of 2016 list – comes with six airbags (front, front side and curtain), a Driver Alert System (rest assist), ESC, ABS with brake assist, multi-collision brakes and Isofix child seat mounts as standard.

The new Volkswagen Tiguan – which is locally assembled in Pekan (the first CKD VW SUV) and Energy Efficient Vehicle (EEV) certified – is competitively priced at RM148,990 for the Comfortline and RM168,990 for the Highline to battle the Japanese favourites (in case you needed reminding, this is a class featuring the Honda CR-V, Nissan X-Trail and Mazda CX-5). That’s on the road without insurance, before an early bird discount of RM7,000. Five colours are available – Pure White, Deep Black, Atlantic Blue, Tungsten Silver and Indium Grey.

VPCM’s package includes five years factory warranty (as opposed to the old 3+2 extended warranty programme) with five years of free roadside assistance. The service interval is 15,000 km, which means less visits to the dealership. For detailed specs and figures, visit the VW Tiguan page on CarBase.my.

GALLERY: Volkswagen Tiguan 1.4 TSI Highline


GALLERY: Volkswagen Tiguan 1.4 TSI Comfortline