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Skoda Yeti and VW Tiguan in the driving report: The related compact SUVs in comparison

Hans-Dieter Seufert
Skoda Yeti and VW Tiguan in the driving report
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R and 22 billion tons of snow, informed the German Weather Service, had been lying around in Germany until recently. So more than enough to get stuck again in detail and swear when digging out that the next time you will definitely buy a four-wheel drive car.

For example Skoda Yeti, who bears the name of a snow monster and thus already suggests a certain solidarity and pleasure in dealing with the icy season. It uses the same base as its cousin, the VW Tiguan. Because no other compact off-roader has come close to its success, the Volkswagen Group is taking care of an equal opponent itself.

The Skoda, adjusted for equipment, is around 4,100 euros and externally a good 20 centimeters away from the VW. So less car for less money? As far as the space is concerned, yes. The amount of space provided by the Yeti its smaller dimensions, is unrestrictedly sufficient for four adults - also because it makes clever use of the space with the rear seat system borrowed from the Roomster: the two wide outside seats and the narrow center seat can be moved, tilted, folded and removed separately. In addition, the outer seats are grouped together to form a more comfortable two-person combination inwards when the middle seat is outside. The VW Tiguan counters this variability acrobatics with a cozy, padded rear seat with adjustable backrests. Divided asymmetrically, it can also be moved lengthways. When folded down, the seats plunge into the footwell, but this only creates a level surface with the optional, variable luggage compartment floor (165 euros). In contrast to the standard dimensions, the maximum load volume of the Tiguan is just below that of the completely cleared Skoda Yeti.

Skoda Yeti and VW Tiguan in the driving report: Both drive like compact cars

The differences are bigger in terms of space for driver and front passenger - which is mainly due to the lush interior width of the VW Tiguan. Highly mounted, outstanding sports seats, which come as standard in Sport & Style, give you the feeling of driving an off-road vehicle much more than the very comfortable Skoda Yeti seats. Theirsdeeper installation position, the crew integrates more strongly into the car, which almost looks like a compact car.

An impression that is confirmed in our driving report. The Skoda Yeti around bends. The VW Tiguan succeeds just as well, especially when it is in the sport mode of the optional adaptive damper system (1,045 euros). In the Skoda Yeti, the normal chassis is enough to even surpass the balanced suspension comfort of the Tiguan. The VW Tiguan, on the other hand, has advantages in handling with its more precise, feedback-friendly steering.

Both the Yeti and the Tiguan are only suitable for smaller off-road excursions

The two buy their outstanding on-road talents with slightly limited off-road capabilities. This can already be seen in our driving report on the VW Tiguan Sport & Style on its large front overhang, which limits the angle of approach and departure to 18 degrees, while it is 25 degrees at the rear. At 19 and 26 degrees, the Skoda Yeti does slightly better, but has 1.5 centimeters less ground clearance. Nevertheless, its 18 centimeters are enough for smaller terrain scrapes.

The all-wheel drive system, which is identical in both, takes care of propulsion, which is called 4Motion at VW and only 4x4 at Skoda Yeti. Normally, almost all of the drive power goes to the front wheels. If there are speed differences between the front and rear axles, the electrohydraulically controlled Haldex clutch closes and distributes the power between the wheels - up to 100 percent to one axle. Instead of differential locks, the system leaves it with wheel-selective brake interventions.

Skoda Yeti and VW Tiguan in the driving report: There is always enough traction

All of this succeeds inconspicuously and very effectively in practice. The four-wheel drive provides both with high traction at all times, even icy driveways to the ski lift they climb up unimpressed. Downhill driving assistance intervenes - in the VW Tiguan it costs 96 euros.

In terms of the engine range, the overlap between the cheaper Skoda Yeti and the VW Tiguan is limited to the two-liter diesel with 140 and 170 hp. Even the weaker version of the common rail four-cylinder is sufficient, offers sufficient pulling power and temperament.

The Skoda Yeti looks more powerful in our driving report

Despite almost identical performance, the engine in the Skoda Yeti works however, it is stronger, easier to turn and at the same time more sophisticated than in the Tiguan. The engines in both cars are coupled with a precisely switchable and well-stepped six-speed gearbox. This also explains the small differences in driving values ​​and consumption. The almost 80 kilograms higher weight of theTiguan does not turn out to be a disadvantage in everyday life, rather the larger dimensions and poor clarity due to the wide D-pillars. On the other hand, the Skoda Yeti with its large windows and boxy rear is one of the particularly clear cars.

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