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The Volkswagen Tiguan Did What the Golf Usually Does

The compact SUV outsold the Golf in 2019 to become VW’s best selling model, just as Wolfsburg teases the 2021 Tiguan facelift.


  • By: Leo
  • Tuesday, 28 April 2020
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The Volkswagen Tiguan Did What the Golf Usually Does

The VW Golf has always been Wolfsburg’s best seller….right? Well, not anymore. In 2019, the Tiguan compact SUV outsold the all-conquering Golf for the first time since its introduction in 2007. Not satisfied with just beating the Golf, the Tiguan also became Europe’s best selling SUV ever. To commemorate this historic achievement, Volkswagen has released a teaser sketch of the upcoming 2021 facelifted Tiguan.

Being the largest automobile manufacturer in the world, Volkswagen is no stranger to astronomically high sales figures. VW sold 778,000 units of the Tiguan in 2019, versus 622,500 units in 2018. When compared to the Golf, the ever-green hatchback saw a drop in sales from 731,000 units in 2018 to 702,000 in 2019. 

Fret not fanboys, the Golf is still VW’s best seller of all time, with over 35 million units sold since its introduction in 1974. For comparison sakes, the VW Beetle sold approximately 21.5 million units, with the Kombi hippie-bus selling an estimated 10 million.  

Volkswagen hit another milestone with the Tiguan, with its six-millionth unit produced earlier this year. Since it was introduced 12 years ago, production of the Tiguan has increased over seven-fold, growing from 120,000 units in 2007 to a whopping 910,926 in 2019. On average, VW rolled a Tiguan off the assembly line every 35 seconds! 

The Tiguan is now among the top three best-selling SUV’s in the world, beating out the likes of the Hyundai Tuscon and Nissan Qashqai. In 2019, the Tiguan was outsold only by the Honda CR-V with 811,210 units, and the segment leader Toyota RAV-4, with almost 948,000 units. 

First introduced in the Frankfurt International Motor Show in 2007, the Tiguan was the right car at the right time for Volkswagen. By capitalising on the dawn of the compact SUV craze, the Wolfsburg outfit saw the annual sales figures rise quickly, reaching the half-million mark by 2011. The second-generation Tiguan broke cover in 2016, boasting the Volkswagen Group’s modular MQB platform.

The introduction of the XL body in 2017 with a 110mm longer wheelbase saw sales of the Tiguan skyrocket, with 55 per cent of all Tiguan’s sold in this variant. Known as the Tiguan Allspace in Europe, VW introduced the XL version into the Chinese market as the Tiguan L, as well as a plug-in hybrid variant in 2018. To keep up with this enormous demand, Volkswagen builds the Tiguan in four manufacturing plants spread over various time zones to maintain round-the-clock production. 

To keep the momentum of sales going, Volkswagen has teased the refresh 2021 Tiguan which will supersede the outgoing model sometime next year. VW has stated that the new redesign would include a “redesign interior and new powertrains”. While Wolfsburg was scant on details, it’s logical to deduce that the new variant would consist of a Plug-In Hybrid drivetrain for Europe. 

Volkswagen has the proven track record of capitalising on successful designs and making big bucks out of them. The Tiguan is no different, and with the 2021 facelift looking like a winner, the question is not if it will be successful, but more of how much more units Volkswagen will be able to move off the showroom floor.

(Note: We reviewed the Volkswagen Tiguan 1.4 TSI sometime back. Click here to know what we thought of it.)


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