The right driver's licence.
A Class B driver's licence allows you to drive with a trailer weighing up to 750 kg - provided that the approved total mass of the combination does not exceed 3,500 kg. For heavy trailers up to 4,250 kg, you'll need to complete a B96 driving course.
What does "approved total mass" mean?
With regards to the approved total mass of the combination, it doesn't matter how much you've actually loaded onto the trailer. The essential aspect is: the total mass of your Tiguan and trailer that is listed in the vehicle documents.
With the trailer attached, you may only drive at a maximum of 80 km/h outside of built-up areas. However, in certain circumstances you may obtain a 'Tempo-100' authorisation from test institutes such as the TÜV (German equivalent of an MOT facility).1
Different countries. Different rules.
The legal rules and regulations for trailers differ from country to country. This applies particularly to speed limits. Check the relevant information before embarking on a trip abroad.
Switzerland and the Netherlands stipulate an additional secondary coupling unit for trailers without brakes that prevents the trailer from becoming detached. This may be e.g. a chain or a rope.
A good rear view is essential - especially when overtaking. If your trailer is wider than your vehicle or blocks your rear view, you are required to have an additional exterior mirror.
More regular maintenance checks.
Due to the increased strain on the vehicle that occurs if you regularly tow a trailer, Volkswagen recommends having your car undergo maintenance checks even between inspection intervals.
Short brake test.
A better sense of the road and the braking distance: when driving on snow and ice, conduct regular short brake tests - of course, make sure the road is free and you are not putting others at risk when you do so.
Driving in a low gear means your tyres have more grip and you'll make better progress. In icy conditions, it's best to drive in second gear and accelerate extremely carefully so your wheels do not spin.
You've started extremely carefully but your wheels still spin or skid? Switch to a higher gear immediately - this will reduce the power transmission and you can stabilise your Tiguan.
Calm and even.
So you don't end up skidding: when driving on icy or snow-covered roads, always avoid aggressive acceleration or braking and sudden steering motions.
If you do end up skidding: press down on the clutch or, if you drive an automatic, switch into neutral and gently counter-steer.
Not everyone is a pro.
Even if you've got your Tiguan under control in extreme conditions - others may not. You should therefore always be aware of other vehicles that may skid.
Four-wheel drive on.
Switch to four-wheel drive before heading out to the countryside. By the time you've got stuck in the mud, it's often too late.
If you're driving in a deep rut, drive at an offset. Otherwise you may risk your Tiguan bottoming out.
Greater contact surface for improved traction. Reduce tyre pressure when driving on very soft surfaces. Caution: this reduces ground clearance.
Drive slowly through mud and shallow water. They may be concealing rocks or holes.
Evenly through the mud.
Gain some momentum on solid ground and drive through mud at a consistent speed and with few steering motions. In general, the following applies: In the event of traction - keep your foot on the accelerator. In the event of spinning - take your foot off the accelerator.
First switch, then drive.
Important: do not switch on a slope. Traction decreases when driving uphill, downhill the engine braking effect fails and your Tiguan may lose control.
If in doubt, check.
How deep is the puddle, the mud hole or the ditch? And what's beyond that? Don't take any risks, check the track before you drive. Measure water or mud depth with a stick.
Better turn around.
The mud is too deep, the slope too steep or the terrain too difficult and there's no way around it? Then it's better to turn around - particularly if you are out on your own.
For the sake of the environment: only drive where it is permitted and not just straight through meadows, fields and forests.