Lockdown launches: New VW Transporter range announced

From January next year, South Africans will be able to buy a face-lifted version of their favourite Volksie Bus or as it is called, the Transporter range.

A Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles T6 1 Caravelle Dynamic 002

VW just announced a major facelift for the Transport T6 range, now known as T6.1. The facelift includes all versions in the Transporter range that consist of the Pick Up (Single and Double cab), Panel Van, Crew Bus, Kombi, Caravelle and California.

From the outside, the new front end cannot be missed. The new T6.1 boasts a new radiator grille that is larger and forms a single unit with the new bumper. All elements below the bonnet, like the headlights, are new. The higher specification models get a chrome strip on the bumper and there are newly designed wheels.

Jump inside and a new instrument panel with emphasis on digitalisation is visible. The air vents in the dashboard can now be adjusted in every direction and simultaneously opened or closed using one slider control. Previously, a second slider was needed. The steering wheel has been redesigned – on the new multifunction steering wheel there is now a ‘View’ button, which enables the driver to switch between the digital cockpit's different display configurations with just one click.

Volkswagen Transporter interior.
The new digital cockpit of the Volkswagen Transporter.

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has reconfigured the entire range of infotainment systems in order to provide an unprecedented array of web-based functions and services. The offering now includes fully digital instruments, like the digital cockpit. All T6.1 models are equipped with a Composition Colour radio system as standard, whereas the Caravelle and California are equipped with the Discover Pro Media system with navigation as standard.

For the range-topping Caravelle Highline and the California there is a 10.25-inch digital cockpit where the driver can choose from different screen configurations which are selected via the ‘View’ button on the multifunction steering wheel.

On the mechanical side, the new range said goodbye to the hydraulic steering system in favour of a new electro-mechanical power steering. Benefits include reduced fuel consumption, and through its controllability it opens up access to numerous new driver assistance systems. A second-generation chassis control system (DCC), where the driver can set the desired level of damping, is now also available as an option. The new T6.1 version will boast a whole spectrum of safety and driver assistance systems, some standard other optional, depending on the model.

The three categories of the T6.1 will continue with the commercial vehicles (Panel Van, Pick Up and Crew, Bus); passenger carriers designed for private use (Caravelle and Kombi) and the recreational vehicle (California Coast). Along with the various engine combinations, the choice of short and long wheelbases offers flexibility and functionality.

At the bottom end is the 2.0 TDI with 81 kW and 250 Nm fitted with a 5-speed manual gearbox. This engine is followed by a 2.0 litre with higher power output, 110 kW and 340 Nm matched to a 7-speed DSG gearbox. But the real power will be delivered by Volkswagen’s 2.0 litre twin turbo BiTDI with 146 kW twin turbo engine with 450 Nm in combination with a 7-speed DSG gearbox.

Competitors include Mercedes-Benz’s recently updated Vito and V-Class, the Hyundai H1, even the Kia Sedona, Ford Tourneu Custom and the Toyota Quantum.

Prices (announced August 2020):

T6.1 Pick Up:

Single Cab 2.0 TDI 81 kW LWB - R412 800

Single Cab 2.0 TDI 110 kW 4MOTION DSG LWB - R466 100

Double Cab 2.0 TDI 81 kW LWB - R485 300

Double Cab 2.0 BiTDI 146 kW 4MOTION DSG LWB - R590 800

T6.1 Panel Van:

2.0 TDI 81 kW LWB - R530 600

2.0 TDI 110 kW DSG LWB - R568 700

T6.1 Crew Bus:

2.0 TDI 81 kW LWB (10-seater) - R612 000

2.0 TDI 110 kW 4MOTION DSG LWB (5-seater) - R639 000

2.0 BiTDI 146 kW 4MOTION DSG (5-seater) - 710 500

2.0 BiTDI 146 kW 4MOTION DSG LWB (8-seater) - R752 700

T6.1 Kombi:
2.0 TDI 81 kW Trendline - R697 700

2.0 TDI 110 kW DSG Trendline - R726 000

2.0 BiTDI 146 kW 4MOTION DSG Trendline Plus - R871 800

T6.1 Caravelle:
Highline 2.0 BiTDI 146 kW 4MOTION DSG - R1 149 400

T6.1 California:

California Coast 2.0 BiTDI 146 kW 4MOTION DSG - R1 196 500

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