Volkswagen Taigun Long Term Reports

By Shivank Bhatt | on June 18, 2022
Long Term Report: June 2022 (End of Term)

It’s that time of the year again! That dreadful moment when I’ve to type the final report for a long-term vehicle and, forcefully, part ways with it. This time, we’re bidding farewell to our long-term Taigun GT, which has been with us for over nine months. Suffice to say that during its stay, we have turned into big fans of this bright yellow VW. In this final report of the Taigun, I’ve decided to wrap up the ownership experience by simply listing down its pros and cons.

Pros
Power, Performance, Efficiency: The 1.5 TSI engine is arguably the best and most complete petrol engine under Rs 20 lakh. Be it its explosive performance, superb refinement, or stellar fuel efficiency (cylinder deactivation, FTW!), this engine is mega on all fronts. Coupled with the 7-speed DSG’s lightning-quick gearshifts, this engine-gearbox combination is virtually flawless.

Handling: As I’ve mentioned in my previous reports, the Taigun GT is more of a hot-hatch than an SUV. Compared to other vehicles in its segment, the VW’s body control is tight, and it has the best handling for sure. The steering, too, is excellent, and chucking it into the corners is great fun.

Touchscreen: Since this is the top-spec version, the Taigun is loaded with features, of course. The touchscreen is one of the best in the business, and wireless connectivity is seamless through Apple CarPlay and Android Auto – it connects as soon as you turn the ignition on. Not just that, the screen is crisp, and the digital driver display looks and feels very premium and Audi-esque.

Cons
A Size Smaller: To my eyes, the Taigun is a handsome-looking SUV. However, it does look small in comparison to its main rivals, and that’s a turn-off for many customers. Even inside, it’s a little cramped as a 5-seater.

Quality Control: The Taigun GT has a rich and premium feel, but there are some glaring issues. For instance, the roof liner is of mediocre quality, and the quality of some of the plastic bits is questionable. Also, the driver side power window button has been malfunctioning from day 1, and more recently, the left front speaker started crackling.

Jerky DSG: The DSG isn’t the smoothest automatics gearboxes out there, especially in bumper-to-bumper traffic. It’s jerky and often gets confused between picking first and second gear at low speeds. Sometimes, upshifts can be a bit aggressive too.

On the whole, the Taigun GT, for me, is the best and most practical driver’s car under Rs 20 lakh. It has all the right ingredients. And while there are a few niggles, they can be overlooked in the bigger scheme of things.

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: October 2021

Current odo reading: 13,240kms

Mileage this month: 695kms

Fuel efficiency: 14km/l

What’s good: Performance, efficiency

What’s not: Space, quality

Long Term Report: May 2022
Volkswagen Taigun Long Term Report May 2022

I wanted to go on a long trip to the hills in the Taigun last month, but it didn’t quite go to plan. A couple of days before I was supposed to leave, the folks at Volkswagen rang and asked if we could spare our (or their) long-term Taigun for a couple of days as they needed the vehicle for the Virtus media drive. So, as is the case with all great holiday plans, this one got junked too.

That said, I spent nearly two weeks in Uttarakhand last month, driving around some kickass hill roads. Even though I had some fancy cars at my disposal, I kind of missed the Taigun – its 1.5 TSI motor, super responsive DCT ’box, and compact dimensions make it perfect for corner carving. This also made me realise that we car enthusiasts often crib and complain about how VW doesn’t bring their GTI hot hatch derivatives to India. But, if you come to think of it, what’s wrong with the Taigun GT? Just put some stiffer (and lowered) springs, and you’ll end up with quite a potent package, won’t you?

Anyway, a couple of days ago I was once again united with the Taigun – and this time, Volkswagen sent the original car that was part of our fleet (last month they mistakenly sent us another one from their fleet). It’s going great so far, but ever since it has come back there’s been some strange rattling sound coming from the dashboard and handbrake. The good thing is that it comes on only at certain speeds. And as long as it’s not a big problem, I don’t think I’ll send it back to Volkswagen anytime soon. I feel I could definitely do with some me-time with the Taigun.

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: October 2021

Current odo reading: 12,545kms

Mileage this month: 256kms

Fuel efficiency: 14km/l

What’s good: Hot hatch in SUV body

What’s not: Rattling noise from the dashboard

Long Term Report: April 2022

Volkswagen Taigun Long Term Report April 2022

Last month, our long-term Taigun had gone back to Volkswagen for a marketing campaign. After being away for a couple of weeks, it’s back with us now, albeit there’s a bit of a catch. It’s not the same vehicle! Well, yes, Volkswagen has replaced it with another same-spec model. It’s still the top-end GT 1.5 TSI DSG, in the same bright yellow colour, but with slightly less mileage. From what I can tell, though, it’s made no difference because it runs exactly the same as the car it replaced.

However, what’s surprising to note is that the same set of issues has now cropped up in this particular unit.  If you refer to my previous reports, you’d remember me complaining of a constant grinding noise from the brakes, and a glitch in the driver’s side power window – which is basically an issue with the anti-pinch function that keeps on rolling the window up and down. A quick Google search on the internet suggests that a lot of owners are facing these very issues with their Taiguns and Skoda Kushaqs. Some customers say that VW/Skoda have pro-actively fixed these issues in their cars, so it’s nothing to worry about, I guess. These minor niggles aside, I’ve to say that the experience of living with the Taigun has been rather fuss-free.

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: October 2021

Current odo reading: 7,108kms

Mileage this month: 856kms

Fuel efficiency: 14km/l

What’s good: Refinement, fuel efficiency

What’s not: Recurring noise from brakes

Long Term Report: March 2022

Volkswagen Taigun Long Term Report March 2022

This month, I barely got to drive our long-term Taigun, and there are two main reasons behind that. First, with the third wave more or less over, the world seems to have suddenly opened up, there had been back-to-back press drives/rides that I had to go for, meaning I found myself spending more time at airports than on the road. Secondly, by the time I got free, Volkswagen asked if we could spare our Taigun for a couple of days as it wanted to showcase its SUV during the global premiere of the Virtus sedan. Since I was about to send the Taigun for its periodic check-up anyway, I wasn’t too hesitant to say yes. Which reminds me that, of late, there have been a couple of minor issues with the Taigun.

It started with an ‘Oil Level Low’ warning on the dashboard, which caught me by surprise.That’s because I didn’t know the Taigun’s onboard computers had a sensor for low oil levels – I’ve only seen this feature in more expensive cars, so I wasn’t sure whether to be pleasantly or unpleasantly surprised. Apart from this, the brakes have started making grinding noises again, and the driver’s power window, particularly the anti-pinch function, has started acting up. Another thing that I noticed lately is the sub-par quality of the wiper blades – the Taigun gets metal-frame wipers instead of beam-style blades. A bit surprising considering this particular version costs `20 lakh+ on-road! Anyway, I am hoping to get the Taigun back soon, so that I can clock some more miles before it’s time to bid farewell again.

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: October 2021

Current odo reading: 11,108kms

Mileage this month: 728kms

Fuel efficiency: 14km/l

What’s good: Premium features

What’s not: Noisy brakes, faulty window switch

Long Term Report: February 2022
Volkswagen Taigun Long Term Report February 2022

As you might have already read in our cover story this month, the combo of Taigun’s 1.5 TSI engine and 7-Speed DSG gearbox impressed all of us with its impeccable performance, refinement, and stellar fuel efficiency. Now, I believe I can attest to this fact better than others simply because I’ve been living with the Taigun GT for close to four months now. So far, the experience has been more than just rewarding, and the more I drive it, the more I love it. With the kind of fuel efficiency the Taigun is returning, I am actually convinced that you don’t need a diesel engine in a car of this segment.

For everyday driving, I absolutely love the fuss-free nature of the Taigun – it’s unbelievably refined and isolates you from the world outside quite comfortably. I don’t mind sitting in traffic jams for hours because, frankly, life seems okay inside the Taigun. It has all the luxuries you’d want in a premium product, albeit I do wish it had ventilated seats.

A few days ago, I drove the 1.0 version of the Taigun, and I must say that its ride quality was markedly better than the stiffly sprung GT version. That said, I do prefer the setup of the GT, as it feels more like a hot hatch than a high-riding crossover.

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: October 2021

Current odo reading: 10,380kms

Mileage this month: 1,030kms

Fuel efficiency: 14.5km/l

What’s good: Handling, efficiency

What’s not: No ventilated seats

Long Term Report: January 2022
Volkswagen Taigun Long Term Report January 2022

I was planning to have a quiet new year at home. But then, a four-day holiday from work and Delhi’s depressing air quality forced me to make a quick dash to the hills of Uttarakhand in our long-term Taigun.

My plan was to still stay at home, though. So, I rang my uncle in Dehradun and got the keys to his house in a place called Gopeshwar. It’s roughly 250kms away from Doon. Earlier, it would take close to eight hours to complete this journey, but thanks to the new road network and a brisk car like the Taigun, I did it in six hours. The next day, I headed to Chopta, which is a quaint hill station, but it’s also quite popular amongst trekkers. When I drove up there, it was snowing, and there was moderate traffic. Since the Taigun is an FWD AT, I thought I’d made a wrong call in choosing it. But, surprisingly, driving it on snowy roads was a piece of cake. I also like the fact that in manual or ‘M’ mode, you can lock the transmission in a lower gear – it doesn’t upshift on its own, irrespective of how hard you rev.

Over the course of the trip, I came to realise that the suspension is a bit stiff. Although, that also meant that it handled more like a hot hatchback in the hills – a happy trade-off for me. But the best part of the trip wasn’t the drive or the scenery. Instead, it was the fuel economy – it returned a phenomenal 14km/l (hills and highways)!

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: October 2021

Current odo reading: 9,350kms

Mileage this month: 2,348kms

Fuel efficiency: 14km/l

What’s good: Mature dynamics, fuel efficiency

What’s not: Grinding noise from the brakes

Long Term Report: December 2021
Volkswagen Taigun Yellow Static Shot

I got to keep our long-term Taigun for two weeks last month, and I’ve to say that it’s an absolute hoot to drive everywhere. For me, the Taigun’s 1.5 TSI engine and impeccable handling are its main USPs. But those aren’t the only things you need in a vehicle. Customers need a complete package these days, so it’s important to know how effective the Taigun is for daily duties.

First things first, the Taigun STANDS OUT – it’s got those taut lines, tasty wheels, compact dimensions, and the LED taillamps look amazing. I’ve had a few instances where people have told me that it looks ‘expensive’. The interior is equally amazing, but some plastic bits and the quality of the roof liner is quite average. In terms of features and equipment, though, I feel it has everything you need. Plus, the understated and minimalistic theme inside is something that I adore. The touchscreen is brilliant and it gets wireless Android Auto, which is so convenient. More so because there are no regular USB Type-A ports anywhere in the car – it’s only got Type-C ports. I also have to add that it’s quite fuel-efficient for its segment, thanks to the cylinder deactivation system.

Thus far, the experience with the Taigun’s been delightful. There were some small niggles in between, though. The brakes started to make a grinding noise, while the anti-pinch system for the driver-side window started acting up for some reason. A quick visit to the service centre has solved these issues for the time being, but let’s see how the experience is living with the Taigun going forward.  

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: October 2021

Current odo reading: 7,002kms

Mileage this month: 1,186kms

Fuel efficiency: 11km/l

What’s good: Handling, Infotainment system

What’s not: Noisy brakes

Long Term Report: November 2021
Volkswagen Taigun Long Term Report November 2021

Starting to drive a new long-term car is always an exciting moment for me, and to be honest, I’ve been quite looking forward to daily driving the Taigun ever since I first drove it a few months ago.

For one, it is a really good-looking car, and while I never thought I would willingly drive a bright yellow machine, the Taigun looks really good in this shade. The overall design is very impactful, and I think the taillights really set the Taigun apart from any other SUV in the market. The cabin also impresses, and I particularly enjoy the seats. The front seats are exceedingly comfortable and provide great lateral support. The amount of space in the boot was also a surprise, and the low floor means it’s deceptively spacious.

But the highlight of the Taigun has to be the way it drives. Powered by the 148bhp 1.5-litre TSI EVO engine, it really is a quick little machine that’s great fun to drive on the highway and in the city. Even though the manual gearbox of the Taigun is absolutely fantastic, the perfectly matched 7-speed DSG gearbox means that I don’t have to worry about gearshifts. When left to its own devices, the DSG does a good job. For better throttle response, though, I prefer driving the Taigun in Sport mode, which allows the gearbox to hold onto gears for longer and keeps the engine at its optimum RPM for immediate power.

If there is something that I can criticise the Taigun for, though, it would have to be the lack of a diesel engine option. With petrol prices crossing the ₹110 mark, running costs of petrol vehicles have become painfully high. But here the cylinder activation on the TSI engine helps. When driven at an easy pace, I often get to see 12.5-13km/l on the digital readout, and achieving an average of 11.5km/l is very easy. Another thing that is a highlight is the suspension setup. On broken roads, it is on the stiffer side, but on a good piece of tarmac, especially if it’s a twisty section, the dynamic setup of the Taigun is a delight.

All said and done, the next few months are going to be a great experience with the Taigun, and I’m also hoping to get a first-hand experience of Volkswagen’s improved service and aftersales setup. 

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: October 2021

Current odo reading: 5,876kms

Mileage this month: 1,020kms

Fuel efficiency: 11.5km/l

What’s good: Fantastic design

What’s not: No diesel option

Tags: Volkswagen Volkswagen Taigun

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