It seems the T-Cross, T-Roc, Tiguan, ID.4 and Touareg don’t quite cover enough crossover/SUV bases for VW. The company has an all-new one for Europe, although ‘new’ perhaps isn’t quite the right word.
What you’re looking at here is the Taigo, which is a European market version of the Nivus, a car VW has been selling in South America for a year already. The Taigo gets a few styling tweaks and some additional equipment, but otherwise, it’s not all that different.
The Taigo sits alongside the T-Cross rather than below or above it - it’s only slightly longer and about the same in terms of width and wheelbase. With its ‘coupe’ style, the Taigo is pitched as the more ‘lifestyle’ version of the T-Cross, but it’ll be much the same to drive.
We get an entirely unsurprising engine line-up, at launch featuring two 1.0-litre inline-threes - one producing 94bhp and the other 109 - and a 1.5-litre inline-four making a healthy 148bhp. These will drive the front wheels exclusively (there’s no AWD option - that black cladding is mostly for show) via either a five or six-speed manual or a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox depending on your engine and spec choices.
A 2.0-litre ‘EA888’ will fit, but VW has pretty much ruled out installing one to make a ‘Taigo GTI’. We wouldn’t call this a missed opportunity - it’s not like there’s a shortage of VW Group models with that engine.
Inside, the interior is scarcely different to the Polo and T-Cross the Taigo shares its MQB A0 platform with. As standard, there’s a 6.5-litre infotainment screen, upgradable to an eight-inch display along with a 10.25-inch digital cockpit system.
Is the Taigo the niche-filling small VW crossover you were waiting for? You’ll be able to buy one from under €20,000 when the car goes on sale later this summer. UK prices aren’t available just yet.