Even though VW is seen by many as a leader and trailblazer in the hot hatch segment, it's arriving later than usual to this part of the market. The Cupra Ateca came out in 2018, followed by the Audi SQ2. Also, the 300 hp version of the Jaguar E-Pace feels agile, despite being a little heavier.
We hoped Volkswagen would see the logic of having a bigger engine in the Tiguan. Alas, you can only get an RS3 engine in the RS Q3. All through 2019, a prototype powered by the RS3's 5-cylinder engine was seen testing at the Nurburgring, but the production Tiguan R will be motivated by a 2.0 TSI.
It's a new engine that hasn't come out yet. But we believe this has some kind of mild-hybrid setup with an electric motor either in the gearbox or as an accessory and capable of producing 333 horsepower. For the record, this is the same output as the supercharged Audi S4/S5 built up until 2016. Back then, Audi used to rate its U.S. cars the wrong way, like Porsche and BMW.
Speaking of which, we don't know if this version of the Tiguan is coming to the States. It hasn't been seen testing in Death Valley or anything like that, plus there are major differences between the Tiguans separated by the Atlantic pond. The European model is shorter, has DSG instead of an auto and interior tweaks. Does anybody here want to pay about $45,000 for a Tiguan R?