The cleaner TDI alternative
It already feels like spring across most of the U.S., but it’s still winter in Sweden. That makes it a perfect location for automakers to put their prototypes through cold weather testing. The latest vehicle caught on Sweden’s snow-covered roads? The Volkswagen Tiguan plug-in hybrid.
Unlike most prototypes, the Tiguan in these photos was completely undisguised. And thanks to the prominent “PHEV” badges, there’s no debating which version we’re looking at. Compared to the Tiguan GTE concept, the production model looks tamer and a little less adventure-ready, but we generally like the look. The lower fascia has a bit of a Golf GTE feel that integrates well with the overall design.
Based on the concept’s powertrain, expect the Tiguan PHEV to get a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine making 148 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque. Electric assistance should still come in the form of a 54-hp motor up front and a 114-hp motor in the rear. In total, the system should make about 220 hp and accelerate to 60 mph in about 6.5 seconds. In EV mode, the 12.4-kWh battery will be good for about 20 miles of range.
One thing that isn’t clear is whether or not the plug-in hybrid will come to the U.S. Volkswagen hasn’t said. Since the diesel scandal killed any chance of a Tiguan TDI, we’d hope VW would at least offer a fuel-efficient alternative, but you never know.
Sadly, we’ll probably have to wait until the official reveal to hear more. There’s a chance the Tiguan PHEV will show up in Geneva next week, but our spy photographer thinks there’s a better chance we won’t see it until the Beijing Motor Show in April.
Photo source: CarPix