The New Volkswagen Tiguan | Part Two

Volkswagen Tiguan Prototype

Volkswagen Tiguan

The Tiguan Chassis
  • Front axle: McPherson system with aluminum support frame.
  • Rear axle: Innovative four-link rear axle is ideally matched to the four-wheel drive system 4MOTION.

Long before the first prototype was built, it had been decided that the new Tiguan should be an extremely actively driving and safe SUV. The development team pulled out all the stops to achieve this goal. The Tiguan now has to demonstrate in Africa that it achieves neutral to lightly understeering handling and an unusually low roll angle. Furthermore, the road holes along the edge of the Namib Desert should once more test how well the highly dynamic driving characteristics and excellent ride comfort interact under the hardest conditions. Because the demands on the car were clearly stated in the specification: to set benchmarks in dynamics, comfort and active safety. These goals were foremost in chassis development:

  • Agile driving behavior
  • Very good vibration behavior and ride comfort
  • Low roll angle with harmonic roll dynamics
  • High driving dynamic stability
  • Good Offroad handling
Front Axle

The demands are achieved with a chassis layout that sets standards in this class: at the front end, the Tiguan has a McPherson axle specially optimized for the SUV with lower A-arm steering linkage and the wheels hung from damper struts. The axle is located with a one-piece aluminum sub frame.

Rear Axle

The four-link rear axle has also been adapted to best suit the permanent four-wheel drive system 4MOTION. The four-link rear axle of the Tiguan is specially intended for this combination. The extremely robust, but at the same time dynamically laid out axle geometry has already proved itself in the Passat 4MOTION. However, to cope with the stresses of offroad driving, the Tiguan has an entirely newly developed and weight-optimized high-strength steel sub frame instead of the equivalent aluminum component.

The rear axle of the front-wheel drive Tiguan has been modified correspondingly. Items no longer found on board include: Cardan shaft, rear final drive and drive shafts. But the sub frame is utilized in both drive variants. The innovative modular system of this rear axle has a decidedly positive effect on costs.

For the rear axle, newly developed shock absorbers were developed with increased oil volume; a favorable temperature level makes the absorbers well equipped for even the toughest offroad use. Like the front damper struts, also newly developed, both components provide for exceptionally good ride comfort properties.

A New Generation Of Steering

A technological highlight in the indirect chassis area is the completely new generation of electromechanical power steering. A decisive advantage of the system: Despite the very precise steering feeling, even in offroad operation no jolts whatsoever are transmitted to the steering wheel. Primarily responsible for this is a newly constructed steering gear.

Wheels And Tyres

Providing contact to the road or trail on the base versions of the Tiguan are 16-inch wheels with 215/65 R16 tyres. The “Sport & Style” Tiguan also has as standard 17-inch alloy wheels and 235/55 R17 tyres. 18-inch wheels with tyres in 235/50 R18 format are available as special equipment.

continues... | Part Three
Published 5 June 2007 Melanie Carter

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