Considering the compact SUV segment is currently on fire in the US, selling around 4 million vehicles in 2019 alone, it begins to make sense why the market is flooded with new, smaller utilities. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing as consumers ditch 4-door compact cars in favour of CUVs to fit their lifestyles.
The latest addition to the market is VW’s new 2022 Taos crossover — a compact model based on the MQB modular transverse architecture, slotted below both the Tiguan (sitting 11-inches shorter) and the German’s recently revealed 2021 ID.4 electric SUV.
Here’s how VW’s sport utility lineup will look in North America, from smallest to biggest:
Modified Jetta engine with bigger displacement, more power, and improved efficiency
Aside from its smaller stance, the big takeaway with the Taos is the new turbocharged 1.5L EA211 engine VW claims is “designed to produce outstanding fuel economy and driving characteristics.” We won’t know for sure until getting behind the wheel ourselves, but expect the the newcomer to put down 158-hp and 184 lb.-ft. of torque, paired to a choice of both front- and all-wheel-drive forms.
Built on the Jetta’s 1.4L turbo engine, VW enhanced the powertrain for the Taos, increasing its displacement to 1.5L while adding a number of high-tech features designed to produce the stellar fuel economy the company is promising.
Ultimately, the new 1.5L is more powerful than the Jetta’s 1.4L, offers better fuel economy, and goes toe-to-toe with engines typically found in more premium, high-performance vehicles.
4 key characteristics of the new 1.5L engine include:
- Variable Turbine Geometry (VTG) offering higher boost pressure, avoiding wastegate mass flow, and overall more efficient.
- APS coated cylinder liners to help reduce friction between the cylinder liner and piston rings.
- A high-pressure injection system with improved fuel/air mixture, lower particulate emissions, and shorter injection times.
- A map-controlled cooling module with better water flow and quicker engine warming duties.
2022 VW Taos Release Date
The new compact hauler will hit North American dealerships sometime Summer 2021. Pricing hasn’t been released at time of writing but we’re expecting a $22,000 MSRP. Stay tuned for more details.