Volkswagen Tiguan R to reach end of the road – for now

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The top-selling Volkswagen R model in Australia is about to be axed in its current form. But a successor may be on the horizon.

The final example of the current-generation Volkswagen Tiguan R performance SUV is due to roll off the production line imminently after a run of just 18 months in Australia.

Plans for a new-generation model are yet to be locked in, however Volkswagen insiders have told Drive’s European Correspondent Greg Kable in recent weeks a second generation with familiar mechanicals is planned.

The Tiguan R is the company’s top-selling R performance model so far this year, with more than 2500 examples sold since it arrived in local showrooms in the first half of last year.

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In the switch to the next-generation Tiguan – which goes on sale in Europe in the coming months, but does not reach Australia until early 2025 – production of the R is due to end imminently, VW executives told Drive.

Volkswagen Australia is stockpiling vehicles from the final batch of production, and estimates to have stock in showrooms until June next year.

“We do need to say farewell to Tiguan R as we transition into Tiguan (generation) 3, but the good news we will still be on sale until June next year,” Michelle Rowney, head of product for Volkswagen passenger vehicles in Australia, told a media conference this week.

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What the new VW Tiguan R could look like, imagined by Theottle.

If there is a new Volkswagen Tiguan R, it may become the last new petrol-powered VW R model, as the performance division is due to go electric-only by the end of this decade.

The next Golf – and therefore the Golf R – will be electric, and there will not be another Arteon (or Arteon R).

While there will be another petrol-powered T-Roc – due in 2026 – it is remains to be seen if it will offer an R version given it would have just four years on sale.

In the meantime the new-generation Tiguan will be available with a 195kW 2.0-litre turbo-petrol engine in R-Line form – splitting the difference between the current Tiguan 162TSI, and the 235kW R.

Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he started his own website, Redline. He contributed for Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020.

Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, from flicking through car magazines at a young age, to growing up around performance vehicles in a car-loving family.

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