The old Volkswagen Tiguan sold strongly, right up to the end of the its production run. The new model is all-new and improved, so we expect it to shoot straight to the top of the family SUV food chain.
We compare it to the Skoda Yeti – a popular crossover built on the same platform as the old Tiguan. It might be a little long in the tooth now but the solid Skoda offers comfort, space and excellent build quality making it very hard to fault.
Use our Volkswagen Tiguan deals page and Skoda Yeti deals page to find the best savings on either car. Check out our list of best SUVs if neither takes your fancy or our car chooser to size up the competition.
Volkswagen Tiguan vs Skoda Yeti – styling
The Tiguan’s styling has changed noticeably from the previous generation, with the new car looking a squatter and more muscular than before. Large alloy wheels fill out the wheel-arches, especially on sporty R-Line trim, and the short front overhang helps give the car a more solid stance. VW is expected to launch a family of Tiguan models, so buyers will eventually have a choice of bodystyles, too.
Skoda’s Yeti has always veered onto the more utilitarian side of the crossover class – the boxy dimensions and chunky detailing don’t try to hide its off-roading aspirations, but neither are they quite as stylish as some more modern choices. Those after an even more rugged look should check out the Outdoor model, that adds more cladding and a scuff-plate to complete the look.
Volkswagen Tiguan vs Skoda Yeti – interior
Modern Volkswagens tend to be rather impressive in terms of interior design and quality, and the Tiguan is no exception. Much is shared with the current Volkswagen Golf, except quality and technology seems upped just a notch – the latest Volkswagen infotainment system looks impressive, and comes with a version of Audi’s Virtual Cockpit as an option. Buyers coming from more premium brands will no doubt be impressed with this car.
Inside the Yeti, you’ll find a modern layout and solid feeling materials – it’s not going to wow anyone, but few will be able to find fault with the excellent ergonomics and straightforward controls. Technology-wise, the Yeti is at least one whole generation behind the Tiguan, but you’ll still find the essentials including USB connectivity, Bluetooth and satellite navigation.
In terms of practicality, you won’t be surprised to find the Tiguan’s larger exterior dimensions translate into a fair amount of extra interior space. There’s ample room for five people, and the 615-litre boot is bigger than many cars in the class above. In comparison, the Yeti’s 416-litre space is a little disappointing, but still broadly comparable to rivals including the Nissan Qashqai – plus the high roof means passengers in the Yeti will have loads of headroom.
Volkswagen Tiguan vs Skoda Yeti – driving
Details on how the new Volkswagen Tiguan drives are scarce for now – few road tests have been conducted and none on UK roads so far. However, we expect the Tiguan to handle just like a slightly larger Golf thanks to being based on the same MQB platform. VW’s 4Motion all-wheel-drive is optional along with a seven-speed DSG automatic gearbox. Refinement will take a major step-up compared to its predecessor to push the Tiguan to compete against lesser versions of the Audi Q3 and BMW X1.
The Skoda Yeti is also based on the Volkswagen Golf, albeit an earlier generation, and still handles much like a traditional family hatchback with a slightly raised road height. The ride is rather comfortable – impressive considering the Skoda’s reasonably short length. Of course, the older design and lower price means that the Yeti loses out a little in terms of refinement, but it should lead the way in the rough stuff where it’s surprisingly capable.
Volkswagen Tiguan vs Skoda Yeti – engines
At the moment, the engine line-up for the Volkswagen Tiguan is somewhat limited, and there’s a choice of just one petrol and one diesel engine. The former is a 2.0-litre turbocharged unit with 178hp and is only available with top SEL and R-Line trims paired to the DSG automatic – it takes 7.7 seconds to get from 0-62mph. The sole diesel is also 2.0-litres in size, has 147hp and comes with either a manual or automatic ‘box – both versions taking 9.3 seconds to get from 0-62mph.
However, it won’t take long before Volkswagen adds a huge array of engines to the Tiguan. We’d expect two or three more petrol variants, and probably the same if not more in terms of diesel choices. Plus, there’s expected to be a hybrid version akin to the Golf GTE model.
The Yeti is currently available with a grand total of three engines, one petrol and two diesel. The petrol is a 1.2-litre unit with 108hp and can reach 62mph from rest in 10.9 seconds with the standard six-speed manual gearbox – a DSG is optional. Then there’s a 2.0-litre diesel, also with 108hp, which offers a 0-62mph time of 11.7 seconds mated to a five-speed manual.
Sporty Monte Carlo models also have the option of the same 147hp 2.0-litre diesel found in the Volkswagen. It takes 9.1 seconds to reach 62mph and can be bought with either a manual or an automatic and is the only version to come with four-wheel-drive as standard.
Volkswagen Tiguan vs Skoda Yeti – value for money
The Tiguan is priced from £25,530 in basic S trim, rising to £27,280 for the SE, £28,005 for the SE Nav, £29,580 for the SEL and £31,895 for the sporty R-Line. Those prices represent around a £2,000 increase over the past generation, but equipment levels in general are improved. Going for an automatic and four-wheel drive version costs around £3,000 more over the standard car as well.
The Skoda’s lower powered engines and smaller size mean that basic S trim cars are priced from £17,210. An automatic gearbox commands a £1,100 premium over manual cars, and the diesel costs £245 on top of that. SE models cost £1,550 more and bring a lot of equipment that many buyers will consider important such as climate and cruise control. Popular Monte Carlo models bring racier styling for an extra £960, or you can go for full out luxury in the SEL models, which are priced from £20,590.
In terms of fuel economy, it’s hard to directly compare the cars because of their varying engines. The Tiguan returns between 38.2 and 58.9mpg, whereas the Yeti returns between 51.4 and 64.2mpg – curiously it’s the diesel automatic that’s the thirstiest and not the petrol engine. The best comparison is between models using the same 147hp 2.0-litre diesel with four-wheel drive and an automatic gearbox, and it’s a pretty close call, with the Tiguan returning 49.6mpg against the Yeti’s 51.4mpg.
Volkswagen Tiguan vs Skoda Yeti – verdict
In the past, a comparison between the Volkswagen Tiguan and Skoda Yeti would have been a much clearer cut case – unless you needed the brand kudos of the Volkswagen, you’d be better off with the chunky Skoda and several thousand pounds in your pocket. But, for now, the two cars take different approaches to crossover dominance.
The Skoda still excels in terms of value and charm, with low running costs and cheap prices giving it plenty of appeal for those looking for a slightly larger alternative to the likes of the Nissan Juke and Renault Captur. It’s a great little car that’ll put a smile on your face in all weathers.
The Volkswagen Tiguan has gone beyond its former self and has ventured into more premium territory. It looks the part inside and out, and offers space and equipment far beyond some premium badged rivals. If you want the classiest and largest mid-size crossover out there, you need to check out the new Tiguan.
Save money on your new SUV
If you’re sold on the new model, check out our Volkswagen Tiguan deals page to see how much carwow could help you save or, if the Yeti hasn’t frightened you off, check out our Skoda Yeti deals page. For more options, head over to our car chooser to narrow down your search or see our deals page for our latest discounts.