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The new compact SUV takes the place of golf

While we mourn the loss of the Volkswagen Golf, the German manufacturer continues with a replacement that is not called a “replacement”: the 2022 Volkswagen Taos. VW prefers not to think of Taos as the successor to the Golf, but even the carmaker’s representatives say that “there will be a lot of overlap in the case of use.”

Can this overlap keep dissatisfied golf buyers? This seems likely, although more importantly, the Taos is expanding the scope of VW’s crossover. Currently, the head of the high-level company, Tiguan, starts at nearly $ 25,000. The smaller Taos needs to reduce that number, perhaps below the price of the latest Golf to $ 23,195. This crossover should benefit consumers, even if it lacks the charm of the compact Golf hatchback.

2022 Volkswagen Taos front quarter
2022 Volkswagen Taos rear quarter
2022 Volkswagen Taos front
2022 tail of the Volkswagen Taos

The internal and external dimensions of Taos are profitable

The size of Taos, based on MQB, feels right for consumers. It divides the difference between the outgoing 167.6-inch Golf hatchback and the popular 185.1-inch 175.8-inch Tiguan and 105.9-inch wheelbase. What does this mess of numbers mean? The Taos is larger than the Golf, but should be almost as easy to place on the road as your average compact – it’s 9.3 inches shorter than VW’s compact Jetta.

The increased size is also a boon for the space in the cabin. There are 99.5 cubic feet for passengers – a paltry 1.6 cubic meters less than the Tiguan – and 28.1 cubic feet in the cargo area (with rear seats in place). Both figures overshadow the Golf (93.5 and 22.8) and the Jetta (94.7 and 14.1).

The design, both inside and out, is familiar. VW reduced the look of the Tiguan and merged with part of the flair of non-North American T-Roc. The light strip that connects the headlights to the badge in the grille is thickened, and the details of the headlights are with shades of Arteon. The cute side grille is similar to the Atlas, while the profile is clean and casual – a more aggressive beam to the D-pillar and a faster rear window would create a visual chance. We assume that Volkswagen did it this way to leave the door open for cross sports upholstery.

The cabin is less modern than the redesigned Golf or the upcoming GTI, but the digital instrument cluster and 8.0-inch touch screen create a clean aesthetic. We have questions about the quality of the material, given both our experience with VW in the US market and the vast amount of glossy plastic trim on the dashboard, although the seat upholstery looks clean and first class. Judging by the images, there is enough space for the legs of the second row.

2022 steering wheel of Volkswagen Taos
2022 Volkswagen Taos rear seats
2022 Volkswagen Taos

Taos Active Safety Disapopoints

While Volkswagen’s senior vice president of product marketing and strategy, Hein Schaefer, said, “We believe the American customer wants a well-equipped car,” the company is not giving away.

For example, all active safety devices, such as automatic emergency stop (AEB), are optional. This frustrating decision from VW comes as Nissan, Honda and Toyota offer active safety for free. AEB with pedestrian recognition is standard on the base Rogue Sport, for example, while the class below the Toyota C-HR includes the full Toyota Safety Sense kit on all equipment.

Taos will not include standard active safety equipment.

The optional IQ.Drive safety kit is comprehensive at least, including collision warning with automatic emergency stop, blind spot monitoring, lane keeping assistance, adaptive full speed cruise control and automatic high beams. Provided that Taos undermines more expensive competitors and VW avoids charging an arm and leg for IQ.Drive, the lack of standard safety equipment may be a small drawback instead of an obvious one.

Disappointing aside, there are some exciting features of this compact CUV. Volkswagen has confirmed that its Digital Cockpit system is available on certain upholstery, replacing the dial of the physical cluster with a reconfigurable 12.3-inch display. On top of that, the Taos can function as a WiFi access point and comes with a wireless charging pad. All but the base model will feature an 8.0-inch touch screen and the latest MIB3 entertainment software.

2022 Volkswagen Taos instrument panel
2022 Volkswagen Taos infotainment system

Horsepower and Taos fuel economy must be balanced

Like the Golf, Tiguan and Jetta, the Taos relies on a standard four-cylinder turbocharger. The new 1.5-liter unit has 158 horsepower and 184 pounds of torque – VW did not reveal the weight of the Taos, but these figures exceed 141-hp. Nissan Rogue Sport. Even with the help of a turbocharger, the 1.5-liter four-cylinder can not hold a spark plug for larger engines in the Jeep Compass (175 hp) and the new Hyundai Tucson (190 hp) -ft).

The Taos turbocharged engine works with one of the two gearboxes, depending on where the power goes. Front-wheel drive models feature an eight-speed automatic, while 4Motion all-wheel drive partners with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. There are no data on fuel economy yet, although the total power of the 1.5-liter is similar to the 1.4-liter turbo Jetta – we do not expect a big change in the EPA rating for fuel economy of this model of 30 miles per gallon city, 40 highways and 34 combined.

2022 Volkswagen Taos
2022 Volkswagen Taos side grille

When can you buy Taoism?

While Volkswagen is still months away from announcing prices – we expect prices to start between $ 21,000 and $ 23,000 and reach about $ 30,000 – the carmaker has confirmed that its latest CUV will arrive at dealers in the summer of 2021. Expect more information on property costs in the coming months.

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