Common problems with Volkswagen Tiguan

Volkswagen Tiguan Problems

The Volkswagen Tiguan was first revealed back in 2007 and has since been a fairly popular compact SUV/crossover. The Tiguan is somewhat of a more affordable alternative to the Audi Q5 which means that it shares many of its underpinnings both with the Q5 and with the Porsche Macan.

This is a good thing considering that the Tiguan is a lot more affordable than the other two. All in all, the Tiguan is a reasonably reliable car two, but it does suffer from a few issues that are indeed worth talking about. The most common VW Tiguan issues are related to the engine timing, faulty MAF and O2 sensors, clockspring issues, water pump issues, and issues with the ignition coils.

Most of these can be solved with timely and proper maintenance which means that they are most of them are not directly due to low-quality manufacturing. On the other hand, the clockspring issue is almost entirely due to VW’s inability to do it right, even after a few recalls.

If you are interested in buying the Tiguan, you should focus your attention on the last two generations because these are both modern enough while also not being overly expensive.

 VW Tiguan – Engine timing issues

The timing chain is a well-documented issue with many VW models. More specifically, the tensioner tends to become loose after a while which makes the timing chain lose. If you don’t attend to this issue in due time it has the potential to completely destroy your engine.

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The purpose of the timing chain is to always keep the valves in sync with the injectors which means that if they are not, a lot of engine damage is going to occur. All in all, be sure to follow all the VW recommended intervals when it comes to servicing and inspecting the chain, and you should be good.

 VW Tiguan – Faulty MAF sensor and O2 sensor issues

The mass airflow sensor (MAF) is designed to constantly monitor the amount of oxygen that enters the engine in order to strike a perfect balance between oxygen and fuel. If the MAF starts causing issues, it is also likely to affect the O2 sensor which can lead to both sensors failing.

If you sense your Tiguan is hesitant to accelerate, has issues starting up, is stalling, and potentially even misfiring, the issues are likely one of these two or both. As such, be sure to take your Tiguan to the dealership if you experience any of these.

VW Tiguan – Clockspring issues

One of the most stressful VW issues of all are the issues with the steering wheel clock spring that is tasked with controlling all of the steering system-related features such as the airbags, the steering wheel controls, adaptive cruise, and so on. VW has even issued a recall because of this, but the NHTSA states that more than 1.2 million VW models (including the Tiguan) are still suffering from these issues.

All in all, the clockspring issue is still mostly unresolved which is indeed a problem because it is related to some essential safety features such as the airbag.

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VW Tiguan – Water pump issues

The water pump issue is a common occurrence with many VW and Audi models, but the Tiguan seems to be suffering more than most VW and Audi models do. The purpose of the water pump is to recirculate water from the radiator, through the cooling system, and to the engine in order to cool the engine down.

These tend to fail due to brittle plastic gasket housings which typically develop leaks after a while. Most VW specialists state that you are more than likely to go through one or two water pumps during the lifetime of the Tiguan.

VW Tiguan – Ignition coil issues

Also, one of the most common VW Tiguan issues is related to the ignition coils. The Tiguan typically uses a 4-cylinder engine which means that it comes with four ignition coils. When some of these fail, the engine will become sluggish and relatively unwilling to accelerate which means that you should take your Tiguan to a dealership immediately.

Most VW specialists state that the Tiguan is likely going to need an ignition coil replacement every 50,000-60,000 miles which is indeed common. They sometimes tend to fail all at once which means that the fix could cost a few hundred dollars.

FAQ Section

Is the VW Tiguan worth it?

The VW Tiguan is one of the most popular current VW models which means that many people deem it to be worth it. As such, hardly anyone can argue that the Tiguan is not a good car, but many people aren’t all that interested in buying a car like the Tiguan anyway.

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The Tiguan is being bought by both male, female, old, and young drivers which means that it offers something for everyone. It is highly dependent on the options you go for which means that a well-optioned Tiguan can rival the Q5 while a low-spec example can’t even come close.

Is the VW Tiguan safe?

The VW Tiguan is a 5-star safety-rated car which means that it is as safe as most compact SUVs/crossovers can be. The Tiguan comes with all the necessary minimum safety systems directly from the factory. However, if you want the latest and greatest safety software systems, you need to pay for them.

That is more or less the general theme of the Tiguan because it is highly dependent on the options you go for.

How long can a VW Tiguan last?

The VW Tiguan is able to last more than 200,000 miles with proper maintenance at the very minimum. If you take good care of a Tiguan, or any other VW for that matter, you are likely going to enjoy it for a long time to come. Sure, some models experience issues more than others, but in general, the Tiguan is dependable.

There are many Tiguan examples all across the world with more than 300,000 miles on the clock. All in all, if you maintain it well, it is going to last.

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    Marko Mikulic

    Why do you love writing about cars? I love writing about cars as cars are a huge personal interest of mine. I was raised in a car enthusiast community and ever since I was young, I always wanted to do car-related work.

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