Volkswagen Taigun: VW’s newest success?
Enthusiasts like us love to drive cars, hard and fast. But while cars are more suited to the Thrill of Driving, in our conditions, what you ideally need is an SUV that can deal with the rough stuff and offer a commanding view of the road, along with offering an increased sense of safety to occupants. This is where mid-size SUVs come through and the Volkswagen Taigun does all of that while also delivering driving thrills. But the Taigun is not aimed only at the enthusiast. With Volkswagen’s India 2.0 project, the company is keen to find newer audiences across the nation. The Taigun is a crucial element of those ambitions and the SUVW ticks a lot of the right boxes from the start.
Design of the Taigun
In the flesh, the Volkswagen Taigun looks like a handsome SUV. There’s no barrage of unnecessary lines to polarise your design sensibilities, with the Taigun winning you over with its appearance that is likely to age well. When viewed head-on, you might notice a hint of familiarity to the Volkswagen Polo. That said, the proportions of the Taigun are well balanced, and if standing out is your thing, the Taigun GT Plus has you covered. This top-spec model, especially in a flashier colour such as the Curcuma yellow, plus a generous helping of chrome is bound to grab your attention, even as it motors down the opposite direction on an expressway.
Inside the VW Taigun
While styling might be subjective, the interiors of the Taigun are unlikely to divide opinion. Step inside this SUVW and you’re greeted by a pleasant, typically Volkswagen cabin. The layout is logical, ergonomics are spot on and the steering wheel (sporting the new VW roundel) is adjustable for rake as well as reach – a big plus. You get leather seats that have a good amount of bolstering, even at the rear, particularly useful for when an enthu-cutlet is driving. All the switchgear feels high quality and the Taigun’s environs feel like those from a segment above.
Engines of the Taigun
The fun to drive nature of the Taigun is evident when you get behind the wheel. Both the 1-litre TSI and the 1.5-litre TSI Evo motor are eager to rev, responding beautifully when you’re caning it. Couple that with the well-judged throws of the six-speed manual or the quick-shifting DSG or the smooth torque converter automatic, and you have an SUV that is eager to be hustled! And hustle you do, because the Taigun is an absolute joy to drive.
Driving the Taigun
No surprises here, we have always maintained that the Polo has been the hatchback to buy if driving pleasure is an overriding priority and we continue to wax eloquent about it – and despite being an SUV, the Taigun carries on that legacy. The low speed ride has a firm edge without being uncomfortable and the Taigun feels typically Germanic in that confidence with which it tackles poor roads. The ride improves with speed and provides impressive stability on the highways as well as in corners. Speaking of which, thanks to the inherent torsional rigidity of the Volkswagen MQB-platform, the Taigun inspires confidence in the corners as well as offering greater level of protection for its occupants. No wonder we’ve pegged the Taigun as the Thrill of Driving benchmark in this segment.
Volkswagen India 2.0
With Volkswagen’s India 2.0 project, the manufacturer has left no stone unturned with its SUVW, aiming it squarely at the increasingly popular (not to mention increasingly crowded) mid-size SUV segment. A key factor in these plans is the MQB platform. The production of the Taigun and other future models sharing the Indianised MQB-A0-IN platform will be undertaken at Volkswagen’s Chakan facility which has now been upgraded. With increased automation, the upgraded facility will enable Volkswagen to ramp up production capacity, while maintaining quality standards to those that are even more stringent than before. The flexibility of the MQB platform allows Volkswagen to benefit from the scalability of its architecture, accelerating the development of its newer models. Another factor is the improved level of localisation on Volkswagen’s cars, with the upgraded facility enabling that number to reach an impressive 95 per cent on certain models. The overall cost of Volkswagen ownership has also been tackled proactively with the India 2.0 Project, with SUVs like the Taigun and the company’s future models promising to be priced aggressively with lower maintenance costs to match. This is great news for buyers and enthusiasts alike, ensuring that the performance and dynamic ability of the Taigun comes at a more accessible price point. Expressing his excitement, Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand director Ashish Gupta said, “With the start of production and bookings open, we are extremely excited to bring the Taigun soon to the Indian market and let our customers enjoy driving the bold, dynamic and German engineered SUVW.” Volkswagen has also begun exclusive previews for the Taigun across eight cities in India, allowing customers to experience the newest SUVW. Keeping in tune with the current times, Volkswagen will also be making use of digital solutions like a 360-degree visualiser, allowing potential customers to virtually explore the Taigun from the comfort of their own homes. “Through the multi-city exclusive preview, we aim to give our customers an opportunity to experience the Volkswagen Taigun along with our new brand design language and digitalized solutions that enhance accessibility and convenience for the customer”, Ashish added.
With its latest SUVW offering, the Taigun, Volkswagen is right to be ambitious. It definitely has the performance and handling chops to enthrall us enthusiasts, while being loaded with enough kit to seriously worry the competition. And that’s what the Taigun is set out to do — building on Volkswagen’s ‘bought by enthusiasts’ moniker and finding newer audiences across the nation.