Volkswagen’s New Taos Is a Dagger Aimed on the Subaru Crosstrek

Volkswagen of America doesn’t wish to pronounce it, nonetheless the unique VW Taos (which gorgeous went on sale) is a different for the Golf that ’Mericans don’t purchase. We’ve mainlined Golfs since they changed the Beetle within the tiring Seventies, after they have been referred to as Rabbits, nonetheless no additional: We supreme like sizable hatchbacks now, aka “crossovers.”

That makes the squat-having a hit upon Taos ($25,040, AWD; $22,995, FWD) the proper type of the last decade, aimed straight on the Subaru Crosstrek. The latter is a darling of the “journey” driving maintain. These of us (largely) don’t the truth is energy mud, nonetheless since Subaru crushes in key “off-avenue-intender” areas the construct VW additionally sells neatly—like New England, Colorado, as neatly because the Northwest—the compact-SUV Taos is a need to for Volkswagen.

And VW nailed its math in 4 key options:

1) It’s purchased additional rear room than the Subaru. That’s 8 inches additional headroom and 1.5 inches additional rear seat knee room. The Crosstrek genuinely isn’t cozy ample for 4 paunchy-sized adults, nonetheless the Taos the truth is is. And with these help seats folded or just, the Veedub additionally smokes the Subaru with as quite a bit as 60.2 cubic ft of cargo quantity aft of the entrance seats.

You’d come by even additional for those who occur to equipped the front-wheel-power mannequin of the Taos, nonetheless Volkswagen is conscious of 60 p.c or additional of its product sales will possible be for the model that twists rubber in any respect 4 corners.

2) It’s enjoyable to energy. The Taos with AWD will get a seven-velocity DSG (dual-take dangle of) transmission. The Subaru can even moreover be had with a handbook, nonetheless it’s sadly now not a sporty gearbox. The CVT computerized within the Crosstrek is okay, nonetheless the DSG is a additional collaborating row-your-possess setup, and might be going shifted to an computerized mode in guests. The suspension, whereas now not as buttoned-down as you’d come by from a GTI, resists physique roll—and it didn’t moan or creak after we pointed the entrance wheels straight at a few of rural New York declare’s bespoke potholes.

3) Safety tech is reasonable. VW has built-in LED headlights for all fashions, nonetheless they’ve additionally purchased a bundle referred to as IQ Pressure for beneath $1,000. This includes adaptive cruise management with end-and-plug abet (in order that that you simply would possibly per likelihood possible dash in guests with the system going by the overwhelming majority of the chore), blind-build monitoring, lane sustaining, and computerized forward-collision warning and emergency braking.

4) One factor to look out ahead to. OK, floor clearance isn’t excessive ample vs. the Crosstrek, at gorgeous 6.5 inches vs. 8.7 inches, nonetheless VW’s already confirmed off a additional righteous Basecamp Thought that’s lifted and rolls on additional aggressive rubber. VW will indubitably present that as an in-home improve quickly, what with Bronco Sport, and Jeep Compass to compete with. Volkswagen additionally hinted rigorously that there would possibly per likelihood per likelihood per likelihood be a GTI mannequin of the Taos to achieve help. That may per likelihood per likelihood per likelihood be welcome, too. The 1.5-liter turbocharged vitality plant within the Taos makes all 184 lb-feet of its torque at gorgeous 1,750 rpm. Nonetheless a additional pinned-down, quicker Taos would possibly per likelihood per likelihood per likelihood draw prior VW hatchback and wagon retailers miss these automobiles much less—and draw them study to love the unending crossover zeitgeist.

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