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Volkswagen Taigo (2022): road test of the compact coupe SUV

Volkswagen Taigo is a new possible choice for those looking for a compact coupe SUV, a car that enters a range that seems to have no room for further high-wheel models between the B-segment and C-segment. In fact, between T-Roc and T-Cross, the crossover carves out its own space thanks to its look. It is not very high from the ground, is based on the MQB-A0 platform and is 4.26 meters long.

The platform is therefore the same as the T-Cross, but in a thriving segment (especially in Italy) such as that of the B-SUV / C-SUV, it may make sense to offer the market a car that is 15 cm longer than its younger sister and easy to produce because it shares many components with the one already at home within the group.

Those who know the international automotive industry could recognize in Taigo the traits of the Nivus, a car that was born in markets less restrictive than those in Europe. Precisely because of the different regulations and tastes of the public of the Old Continent, however, we must not run into the mistake of thinking that there has not been a modification work on the platform. Taigo is made in Europe (in Pamplona), shares the platform with Polo and T-Cross and has absolutely European equipment.

Daughter of the times that run and the market in which it presents itself, Taigo exists only with gasoline engines. Nothing new: Volkswagen chooses the path of the three and four cylinders now tested within the range.

The first is a 1.0 available in 95 and 110 hp versions, the latter also with DSG gearbox. The second is the 150 hp TSI 1.5, which makes it a more versatile car and copes better with full-load travel. For all, and this is also the reason why it is more correct to call it a crossover, the traction is only front.

How is it made? The quality is not excellent in terms of materials, while the assembly that does not present defects or criticalities perceptible at the first approach remains valid.

We see, however, that it is an “old school” B segment, of those that still gave up the rear vents for the air conditioning, the roof handles and with swinging finishes that are acceptable in the upper part, but certainly not exclusive in the lower one. Nothing we are not used to with the latest productions.

Someone might complain; however, looking at the general picture it can be assumed that the generations to whom this car is addressed (Millennials and gen Z) are less attentive to aesthetics and prefer to have more practical accessories, especially if this choice allows to keep decent costs low (it cannot be said low in general given the increase widespread throughout the car world) including what younger people are looking for: Digital interior, Android Auto Wireless, Apple CarPlay Wireless, the sporty look.

At the wheel of the petrol mille (110 hp) with DSG gearbox, a small luxury that today is increasingly sought after, Taigo defends itself well. The motors have already been used by all the brands of the group and here the intermediate cut is correctly sized. It does not shine in torque, only 200 Nm between 2,000 and 3,000 rpm, but it makes good use of the automatic double clutch to compensate for some more changes that otherwise we would be forced to do manually.

The result is a smooth ride, pleasant even if it is not a sporty and lightning-fast transmission. In the extra-urban it is valid, in the city and uphill it makes you feel the lack of that extra cue at 1,500/1,800 rpm (if you are loaded with luggage and passengers), but fortunately the car is light: 1,260 kg in running order.

The braking reaction is a little less convincing: the car is not a bison and the system is sized, no problem on stopping distances. A first contact on the road, however, saw the specimen under test break down slightly when it goes to pinch simulating (several times) an emergency situation in the dry. We will re-evaluate better in the review phase, but it must be said that the ease of driving, the good readability of the road and the not excessive mass easily allow to compensate for this behavior a bit ‘dancer.

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