Confirmed: With a New Volkswagen Tiguan Incoming, the Old Volkswagen Tiguan Becomes the Tiguan Limited in America

Timothy Cain
by Timothy Cain
confirmed with a new volkswagen tiguan incoming the old volkswagen tiguan becomes

The enlarged, second-generation Volkswagen Tiguan arrives at Volkswagen of America’s dealers this summer, leaving room beneath Volkswagen’s Honda CR-V challenger for a smaller, more affordable utility vehicle.

No, not the T-Roc. That’s later. Automotive News has received confirmation from a Volkswagen spokesperson regarding a rumor we already knew well: the existing Volkswagen Tiguan will survive as the Volkswagen Tiguan Limited.

We would have preferred the City Tiguan nomenclature, but so be it.

Volkswagen won’t be the first automaker to replace an old model, only to provide the old model with a stay of execution. You’ll fondly recall the 2008 Chevrolet Malibu Classic, which is decidedly not a classic, that cohabited with the seventh-generation Malibu in GM’s sedan lineup for fleet purposes. Chevrolet then did the same with the Impala Limited, a continuing ninth-gen full-size sedan that fought for fleet sales while the current Impala became a retail-oriented car.

Then there’s the Nissan Rogue Select — the first-generation Rogue you wouldn’t select — which ran as a distinctly affordable compact crossover from 2014 to 2015 in conjunction with the current Nissan Rogue.

But it’s also a strategy Volkswagen knows well, even here in North America. The Volkswagen City Golf and City Jetta were Mk4 Volkswagen compacts that continued for four model years following the launch of the fifth-gen Golf (initially known as Rabbit) and Jetta.

Likewise, America’s 2017 Volkswagen Tiguan will become the 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan Limited. Yes, the 2018 model year will be its tenth. It’s somewhat cramped: with 23.8 cubic feet of cargo capacity behind the rear seats and 95.4 cubic feet of passenger volume, the 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan Limited will be 39 percent and 10 percent less voluminous, respectively, than a 2018 Honda CR-V.

However, the Tiguan Limited won’t be Volkswagen’s primary CR-V competitor. The 2018 Tiguan (sans Limited badge) is ten inches longer than the Tiguan Limited and is big enough to offer a third row of seating. Instead, the Tiguan Limited will stack up, size-wise, against vehicles such as the Honda HR-V. Granted, even the HR-V provides slightly more passenger and cargo volume than the Tiguan Limited.

But while the outgoing Tiguan/incoming Tiguan Limited is old and small, recent demand hasn’t reflected those facts. 2016 was the Tiguan’s best U.S. sales year ever by a wide margin — sales jumped 74 percent between 2014 and 2016, alone. The Tiguan’s best ever sales month came in December of last year when 5,575 were sold.

That wasn’t enough to make the Tiguan a mainstream choice in the compact crossover sector. Numerous small luxury brand utility vehicles can sell distinctly more often than that. But it highlighted Volkswagen’s ability to, like every other automaker, sell SUVs if there are SUVs to sell (and if the price is right).

The price of the 2018 Tiguan Limited, Automotive News says, won’t be known until late June. It’s Volkswagen’s intention to severely limited the number of models in the Tiguan Limited lineup. Volkswagen Canada, for example, sold the City Golf and City Jetta as de-contended entry-level compacts with subcompact-aping prices and were sufficiently popular for Volkswagen to provide the cars with a mid-cycle facelift.

Volkswagen Canada’s plans for the first-generation Tiguan may not be identical to Volkswagen of America’s.

“We are presently working on a Canadian version and hope to announce details in the coming weeks,” Volkswagen Canada media relations manager, Thomas Tetzlaff, told TTAC earlier today.

Here’s hoping Volkswagen Canada skips the Limited naming scheme. Consumers are prone to link Limited with top-spec models, but this Tiguan Limited is actually going to be a lower-spec version of the old model.

City Tiguan? Nah, that doesn’t make sense for a utility vehicle.

Country Tiguan. There it is. The 2018 Volkswagen Country Tiguan. Like a rugged, utilitarian, farm implement in Saskatchewan.

Regardless of the badges, the old Tiguan’s protraction, the new Tiguan’s arrival, the Touareg’s continuity, and the ramping-up of the Atlas effectively doubles the size of Volkswagen’s SUV/crossover lineup over the span of mere months.

Timothy Cain is a contributing analyst at The Truth About Cars and and the founder and former editor of Follow on Twitter @timcaincars.

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2 of 21 comments
  • Xantia10000 Xantia10000 on Jun 06, 2017

    I love VW weird decisions: the old, smaller-than-an-HR-V City Tiguan comes with a 2.0T making 200 hp, while the new, huge Tiguan has the same displacement engine but with 16 fewer horses! I know the new engine has more torque and is more fuel-efficient, but try explaining that to Aunt Emily, the intended customer.

  • Mchan1 Mchan1 on Jun 08, 2017

    The existing Tiguan isn't that bad but it's cramp for tall people and those with broad shoulder. The front seats can not be adjustable down/upwards so one sits high while driving which is not good for tall people. The AWD version sucks gas but it handles well esp. in the rainy or winter seasons. It's just too small. The upcoming Tiguan looks bigger and roomy. If I was in the market to buy a CUV, I'd consider the newer Tiguan AWD (but prefer a hybrid) or the hybrid AWD versions of the newer Nissan Rogue SV or Toyota XLE models. Don't need a CUV but it's practically to carry stuff in the back or rear areas but none are that roomy for tall people... yet. Bring on the hybrids and lower their prices!

  • SCE to AUX This is not a race worth winning.
  • JMII These would sell better if they came with a service to drop it off (with new tires and brakes) at which ever track you decided to visit per weekend. While its small it still doesn't fit on a private jet and there aren't many tracks close to where your yacht can be docked. 1st world problems here.
  • JMII Its an SUV so I am shocked they don't already offer it.
  • Analoggrotto As we Tesla owners receive our life energy from the greatest son of the gods of all time, Elon Musk; His cherubs and His nephilim may remove whatever they wish from us for unto him we owe all for our superiority above all the rest of humanity.
  • Kcflyer Nice to see California giving NY some competition to be the worst run state in the union.