To cash in on the burgeoning compact/crossover segment, Volkswagen has plunged into the fray. Showcased at Sao Paulo Motor Show in Brazil last year as a concept, we have been talking about Taigun in detail ever since.
Now, media behemoth Autocar has driven the Taigun concept and they seem to have taken a liking to it. And since we know it is India bound, let us talk about the car in brief.
The Taigun Concept appears very similar to another breed from VW’s stable, the Tiguan which is a bigger SUV (jumbling of words is pretty confusing!). Being a compact, it still manages to look robust. This is emphasized by its massive footprint, with a wheel being placed at each corner of the platform. Moreover, the brawny 17-inch wheels strapped with 205/65 tyres emphasize that ripped built.
As it is a concept car, it is not clear if the current design cues will make it to the production trim or not. VW has hinted that the butch-looking grille as well as the macho headlamps could be mellowed down. The concept also has a two-piece tailgate that provides access to the rear hold. It could, however, turn out to be more pricey and hence we might get to see a typical one-piece, hatchback style tailgate in the production trim.
As a concept it looks striking and it remains to be seen how would the production trim look like.
There’s a high-mounted dashboard that complements the higher seating position of this small SUV. Also present is a passenger handle, though we don’t know if it will be incorporated in the production version.
An opinion worth mentioning is that the paint on the Taigun as well as its neoprene upholstery seems a tad too garish. It might be replaced by more subdued shades when the compact makes it to the roads.
UNDER THE BONNET
The Taigun concept offers a 1 Litre turbocharged Direct Injection three-cylinder petrol mill that puts 109 horses to the wheels. It is borrowed from the Volkswagen Up, and should be enough for the light 995 kg Taigun.
There is plenty of torque on offer, with 175 Nm being available in between 1500 rpm and 3000 rpm. VW claims Taigun will sprint upto 100 kph in a quick 9.2 secs. Surprisingly, its top speed at 185kmph is higher than both the EcoSport and the Duster.
The electro-mechanical steering is expected to add the ease of driving, especially in cityscape. Autocar also expresses that the Taigun retains good control on the open highways at high speeds which is one point we are interesting in considering the pint size matter Taigun is!
Taigun seems to be a worthy competitor in what is going to become a hard-fought segment. Though this concept does carry a bit of frills, we expect VW to come up with atleast three trims at different price points. A saddener is that it is speculated to be launched only towards the end of 2015 or early 2016 which is some time away. However, providing the (concept) cars to the media and showcasing it at various auto shows around the world might have some meaning attached to it. Does (and can) Volkswagen have an ace up its sleeve and can they launch it earlier?
While the EcoSport lacks in ruggedness, the Duster does make up for it. However, it lacks the finesse. If the Taigun could offer a cocktail of these parameters, it will be a sureshot success!! And hey, the price tag is important too.