2020 Volkswagen Tiguan vs. 2020 MINI Countryman

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/03

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Volkswagen Tiguan are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The MINI Countryman doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests front crash prevention systems. With a score of 6 points, IIHS rates the Autonomous Emergency Braking in the Tiguan as “Superior.” The Countryman scores only 3 points and is rated only “Advanced.”

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Tiguan (except S/SE) offers optional Maneuver Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Countryman doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The Tiguan SEL/SEL Premium R-Line’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The Countryman doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The Tiguan SEL Premium R-Line has a standard Overhead View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Countryman only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The Tiguan’s blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The Countryman doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.

To help make backing safer, the Tiguan’s cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The Countryman doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the Tiguan and the Countryman have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, post-collision automatic braking systems, daytime running lights, rearview cameras and available all wheel drive.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system, its standard vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Tiguan the rating of “Top Pick” for 2020, a rating granted to only 30 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Countryman last would have qualified as a “Top Pick” in 2017.

Warranty

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/03

There are over 5 times as many Volkswagen dealers as there are MINI dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Tiguan’s warranty.

Reliability

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The Volkswagen Tiguan’s engine uses a cast iron block for durability, while the Countryman’s engines use an aluminum block. Aluminum engine blocks are much more prone to warp and crack at high temperatures than cast iron.

Engine

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The Tiguan’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 50 more horsepower (184 vs. 134) and 59 lbs.-ft. more torque (221 vs. 162) than the Countryman’s standard 1.5 turbo 3-cylinder. The Tiguan’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 15 lbs.-ft. more torque (221 vs. 206) than the Countryman S’ standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder.

As tested in Motor Trend the Volkswagen Tiguan is faster than the MINI Countryman turbo 3-cylinder:

Tiguan

Countryman

Zero to 60 MPH

8.6 sec

9.3 sec

Quarter Mile

16.5 sec

17 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

81.5 MPH

79.6 MPH

Environmental Friendliness

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/03

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Volkswagen Tiguan higher (7 out of 10) than the MINI Countryman (3 to 7). This means the Tiguan produces up to 24.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Countryman every 15,000 miles.

Brakes and Stopping

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/03

The Tiguan stops much shorter than the Countryman:

Tiguan

Countryman

60 to 0 MPH

124 feet

138 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the Tiguan SEL Premium R-Line’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Countryman (255/40R20 vs. 225/55R17).

The Tiguan SEL Premium R-Line’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Countryman’s optional 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Tiguan SEL Premium R-Line has standard 20-inch wheels. The Countryman’s largest wheels are only 19-inches.

Suspension and Handling

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For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Tiguan’s wheelbase is 4.7 inches longer than on the Countryman (109.8 inches vs. 105.1 inches).

The Tiguan SEL 4Motion® handles at .82 G’s, while the Countryman ALL4 pulls only .79 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

For greater off-road capability the Tiguan has a 1.4 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the Countryman (7.9 vs. 6.5 inches), allowing the Tiguan to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Passenger Space

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The Tiguan offers optional seating for 7 passengers; the Countryman can only carry 5.

The Tiguan has 27 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Countryman (123.9 vs. 96.9).

The Tiguan has 2.2 inches more front shoulder room, .8 inches more rear headroom and 1.9 inches more rear shoulder room than the Countryman.

Cargo Capacity

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/03

The Tiguan’s cargo area provides more volume than the Countryman.

Tiguan

Countryman

Third Seat Folded

33 cubic feet

n/a

Third Seat Removed

37.6 cubic feet

17.6 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

65.7 cubic feet

47.6 cubic feet

Max Cargo Volume

73.5 cubic feet

47.6 cubic feet

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Tiguan’s second row seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Countryman doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

Towing

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The Tiguan has a 1500 lbs. towing capacity. The Countryman has no towing capacity.

Ergonomics

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The Tiguan SEL/SEL Premium R-Line has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Countryman doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

Consumer Reports rated the Tiguan’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the Countryman’s headlights, which were rated “Good.”

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The Tiguan’s available headlights were rated “Good” by the IIHS, while the Countryman’s headlights are rated “Marginal” to “Poor.”

The Countryman’s optional cornering lamps activate a lamp on the front corner when the turn signal is activated. The Tiguan SEL Premium R-Line’s standard adaptive cornering lights turn the actual headlight unit up to several degrees, depending on steering wheel angle and vehicle speed. This lights a significant distance into corners at any speed.

To shield the driver’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side window, the Tiguan has a standard extendable sun visor. The Countryman doesn’t offer extendable visors.

On extremely cold winter days, the Tiguan SEL/SEL Premium R-Line’s standard heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Countryman doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the Tiguan owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Tiguan will cost $475 less than the Countryman over a five-year period.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Tiguan is less expensive to operate than the Countryman because typical repairs cost less on the Tiguan than the Countryman, including $52 less for front brake pads, $65 less for a timing belt/chain and $126 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Volkswagen Tiguan will be $1670 to $2824 less than for the MINI Countryman.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/03

The Volkswagen Tiguan outsold the MINI Countryman by almost 8 to one during 2019.

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