You’ve seen it all before; carmakers will often introduce a new theme for a particular model to keep it looking fresh in a desperate attempt at improving struggling sales by attracting more customers to the brand... This, however, is not one of those all too familiar moments because Volkswagen’s second-generation Tiguan has already proven to be phenomenally popular. In fact, it outsold the Land Rover Defender’s near 70-year production run in under a decade and is a global best-seller. VW Group — which recorded a sales revenue of $265 billion in fiscal year 2018, thus exceeding the prior-year figure by $7 billion — doesn’t need to resort to any such cheap tricks, it’s fair to say that it is doing OK, however, if you are lulled in by this Black Style R-Line Package, then we don’t blame you for a minute because it looks properly good.
A similar design theme was unveiled a few years ago at the Los Angeles Auto Show but this time around the Tiguan is even better. The model already benefitted from a sharp new look, the latest in-car tech and plenty of interior refinement when the new gen was launched in 2016 making it one of the most attractive packages in the segment and it gained more substance beneath the skin too; basing it on the same MQB platform as the Golf was a smart move as not only did this increase cabin space the four-wheel drive option improved the driving dynamics no end making it feel more like a car than it did before. But, if you want your elegant Tiguan to really stand out from the crowd, you can have it with a host of sophisticated black features making the compact CUV look even more dynamic and aggressive.
The Black Style R-Line package is, essentially, self-descriptive. It replaces most of the reflective metal and plastic styling elements with a blacked-out finish so you get an R-Line black roof spoiler, black 20in “Suzuka” alloy wheels, black roof rails, black mirror caps, black rear bumper strip, black R-Line diffuser, black window strips, black trim strips on the bumpers and door add-ons, and a black middle strip in the radiator grille (along with bumpers in “R”-styling and side member trim, wheel housing extensions, and air intake ribs in black) and all for Dh185,162.
The package also sports the “R-Line” label which means you also get a few R-Line trinkets such as a multifunction leather-wrapped steering wheel which adds a premium touch to the cabin and don’t forget, it also has several drive modes (Snow, On-road, Off-road and Off-road Individual) and can tow up to 2,500kg. The safety tech includes a rear view camera system, park assist, adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning plus autonomous emergency braking system, knee airbag and side airbag (rear two outer seats with pre-tensioners), a Dynaudio sound system with a 400 Watt total power output, and a massive panoramic tilt/slide sunroof — but this ‘Black Pack’ is just a visual upgrade so if you thought the 2.0-litre turbocharged four-pot (mated to a seven-speed auto powering all four wheels) had been poked and prodded to produce more than the 220 horses it has then you’ll be disappointed. Enthusiasts will have to wait a bit longer for VW to slap that R badge on this one — but it’s only a matter of time that the performance of this firm favourite is amplified.
In the 11 years since the Tiguan was introduced, almost 5 millions units have found happy homes and with the addition of this rather sinister looking package, VW can feel pretty confident that it will shift quite a few more.