Volkswagen Caravelle 2010 swb, Volkswagen Transporter 2010 (swb), Volkswagen Multivan 2010 comfortline
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2010 Volkswagen Transporter, Multivan & Caravelle Review

$14,060 $16,720 Dealer
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2010 Volkswagen Transporter, Multivan & Caravelle Review

Volkswagen's Transporter and People Mover range celebrates 60 years of production this month, and what better way to enjoy your diamond anniversary than with the release of an all-new model... Or is that mostly-new?

Simply speaking the new Volkswagen Transporter is a very thorough half-body revision, with almost all the changes made forward of the 'B' pillar.

The rework makes a lot of sense from a cost perspective, and has helped Volkswagen pass on big savings to its customers. It's also certain to come as good news to the wallets of existing customers wanting to transfer expensive custom-made body modules from their existing Transporter to the new model with the cargo bay remaining mostly unchanged.

But why go for this new model at all I hear you ask? Surely a freshly chiseled front-end isn't enough reason to raid the piggy bank. Perhaps not. But in restyling the Transporter and People Mover range for 2010, Volkswagen have also made a raft of changes beneath the skin that are well worth considering, especially if safety, running costs and cabin ergonomics feature high on your white van wish list.

Among the improvements, new Transporter and People Mover models now feature: a 3.2 tonne admissible total weight; new infotainment programme; new climate control systems; antenna(s) integrated in exterior wing mirrors; gear shift indicator; new headlamps and tail-lights; new front mudguards, grille and bonnet; new fog lamps with integrated cornering light function (optional); new wet clutch seven-speed DSG transmission (optional); new-generation 4MOTION all-wheel drive (optional); regulated power steering pump; new-generation ESP; new front brakes with 17-inch alloy wheels; Hill Start Assist; new exterior mirrors; new steering wheel; new dash panel inserts; new fabrics; and new colours.

Joining Volkswagen Caddy and Crafter models, Volkswagen's entire Commercial Vehicle and People Mover Range now offers Electronic Stabilisation Program (ESP) as standard.

The newly revised ESP system on Transporter, Volkswagen Multivan and Volkswagen Caravelle now incorporates Hill Start Assist, Active Rollover Protection, Ready Alert Brake (prefill), Fading Brake Support, Hydraulic Brake Assist and a Brake Disc Wiper within the one program.

"The Volkswagen brand has always stood for excellent safety, but we have now made a clear statement with safety standards across the board," says Volkswagen Australia's Director of Commercial Vehicles, Mr Phil Clark."With the introduction of standard ESP across the entire range, every People Mover and Commercial Vehicle now represents an even more sensible safety choice. The Electronic Stabilisation Program plays a vital role in reducing accidents and therefore saving lives."

The system, among the best in the world for commercial vehicle applications, self adjusts according to load conditions and is joined by other electronic safety features including: Anti-lock Braking System (ABS); Anti-Slip Regulation (ASR); Engine drag torque control (MSR); Electronic Differential lock (EDS); seatbelt buckling warning in the instrument cluster and new front dual-piston caliper brakes (on 132kW TDI models).

Inside the revised cabin, high levels of safety continue with dual front, side head/thorax and (optional) full-length curtain airbags available. An integrated cornering/fog lamp, reversing camera (on models fitted with a top-hinged tailgate and RNS 510 satellite navigation only) and radar-based blind spot recognition system (integrated in the vehicle's wing mirrors) are also available as optional equipment.

Ready to tackle the likes of Toyota HiAce and Hyundai iLoad head-on, Volkswagen have sharpened the pricing of its new Transporter van series to now begin at a low $36,490*, while at the same time doing away with a petrol-powered offering.

Instead, the Volkswagen Transporter range is now offered with a choice of three 2.0-litre turbo-diesel units delivering 75kW, 103kW and 132kW outputs. Power delivery has been improved with more torque offered earlier in the rev range for greater flexibility and negligible turbo lag. Fuel economy has also seen a significant improvement, bettering the superseded model by as much as 16 per cent.

Of course fuel consumption figures will vary depending on configuration, transmission type and load carried, but to give you an idea of just how impressive the results are, Volkswagen's top-shelf 132kW TDI engine now uses just 7.8L/100km in the ADR combined-cycle test, a seven per cent improvement over the current 2.5-litre unit.

In addition to the trio of diesel engines and transmissions, the new Volkswagen Transporter is also available with three different roof heights, three wheelbase offerings, and a choice of top-hinged tailgate or barn doors - or as a dual-cab tray-body. The versatile offerings equate to a total of 42 model combinations.

Internal cargo area on Transporter models now ranges from 5.8- to 9.3-cubic metres.

In making the new van range appeal to passenger and commercial customers alike, the 2010 Volkswagen Multivan and Caravelle now provide genuine competition to such market mainstays as the Toyota Tarago, Hyundai iMax or even Toyota HiAce Commuter bus.

The new Volkswagen Mutlivan offers a spacious and flexible interior for up to seven passengers. The seats are removable and interchangable row-by-row meaning the three-seat bench can be moved to the second-row allowing a five-seat capacity and a larger cargo area.

Multivan is distinguished by unique headlamps and colour-coded bumpers, comes standard with the new seven-speed DSG transmission and is also available with an optional chrome pack, 17- or 18-inch alloy wheels and Volkswagen's RNS510 satellite navigation system. A long list of accessories are also available.

Caravelle, now powered exclusively by the economic 103kW 2.0-litre TDI engine, is now priced from just $49,990* and offers comfortable seating for between five and nine occupants, dual-air conditioning with overhead ventilation outlets, rear window retractable mesh sun blinds, overhead lighting and the added safety of three-point inertia reel seatbelts in all seating positions. Caravelle also offers a two tonne braked towing capacity.

Driving the Caravelle, or indeed any of the new Volkswagen van range, is a no more difficult task than managing a large family wagon. Light steering aids the van's surprisingly maneuverable handling characteristics while the punchy diesel engines and strong brakes make keeping with fast-paced traffic a breeze - even when heavily loaded (some of our test vehicles were fitted with up to 560kg of ballast).

Torque delivery is ever-ready with both the single- and twin-turbocharged units providing loads of low down pulling power, as much as 400Nm on the 132kW TDI unit. Five- and six-speed manual models offer a precise and blissfully light gearshift/clutch combination with an instrument cluster-mounted display telling you the exact moment to shift up or down cogs for optimal fuel economy.

Volkswagen's new wet clutch seven-speed DSG is another impressive optional addition to the already well equipped range with the quick thinking transmission making almost imperceptible changes once on the run. The unit is certain to prove popular among commercial and passenger clientele alike with Volkswagen's General Manager of Service, Mr Phil Murray, explaining how the tough new TQ500 transmission can handle up to 600Nm of torque and almost double the amount of power currently handled.

Large mirrors and a commanding driving position mean visibility is excellent all-round while the ergonomic cabin sees all controls and switch gear fall readily to hand - with the possible exception of the rarely used ESP and Harazd Light switches.

The ride is very well settled and impressively quiet while the driver's seat is comfortable and fittingly supportive offering adjustment in all the usual directions and captain's chair-style armrests. The steering wheel is also adjustable for tilt and reach.

With lower operating costs, better fuel economy and superior safety than the previous model, the new 2010 Volkswagen Transporter and People Mover range now represents a reasonably priced and realistic alternative to less appealing and lesser spec'ed Japanese and Korean rivals.

Volkswagen hopes the new generation of vans and people movers -- and their sharper pricing -- will see sales push well beyond the current annual figure of 2500 units, and once paired with Amarok utility models later this year, will represent the widest range of commercial vehicle offerings in the Australian market.

2010 Volkswagen Transporter Specifications & Pricing

Volkswagen Transporter 75kW TDI (from $36,490*)

  • Engine: 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel with 75kW & 250Nm
  • Transmission: Five-speed manual
  • Driven Wheels: Front
  • Fuel Consumption (L/100km): 7.5 (M)
  • CO2 Emissions (g/km): 198 (M)
  • Payload (Manual SWB): 1318kg
  • Brakes: 308mm x 29.5mm disc, single-piston caliper (F) / 294mm x 22.0mm disc, single-piston caliper (R)

Volkswagen Transporter 103kW TDI (from $37,990*)

  • Engine: 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel with 103kW & 340Nm
  • Transmissions: Six-speed manual / Seven-speed DSG
  • Driven Wheels: Front
  • Fuel Consumption (L/100km): 7.7 (M) / 8.2 (A)
  • CO2 Emissions (g/km): 203 (M) / 216 (A)
  • Payload (Manual SWB): 1283kg
  • Brakes: 308mm x 29.5mm disc, single-piston caliper (F) / 294mm x 22.0mm disc, single-piston caliper (R)

Volkswagen Transporter 132kW TDI (from $41,990*)

  • Engine: 2.0-litre four-cylinder twin-turbo-diesel with 132kW & 400Nm
  • Transmission: Six-speed manual / Seven-speed DSG
  • Driven Wheels: Front/All (Optional)
  • Fuel Consumption (L/100km): 7.8 (M) / 8.1 (A) / 8.4 (4MOTION)
  • CO2 Emissions (g/km): 203 (M) / 216 (A)
  • Payload (Manual SWB): 1318kg
  • Brakes: 340mm x 32.5mm disc, twin-piston caliper (F) / 294mm x 22.0mm disc, single-piston caliper (R)

Options:

  • LWB: $2000* (not available on 75kW TDI model)
  • DSG: $3000* (not available on 75kW TDI model)
  • 4MOTION: $3500* (available on 132kW TDI model only)
  • 4MOTION & DSG: $6500* (available on 132kW TDI model only)

To download full specifications, click on this link.

2010 Volkswagen Caravelle Specifications & Pricing

Volkswagen Caravelle 103kW TDI (from $49,990*)

  • Engine: 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel with 103kW & 340Nm
  • Transmissions: Seven-speed DSG
  • Driven Wheels: Front
  • Fuel Consumption (L/100km): 8.2 (A)
  • CO2 Emissions (g/km): 216 (A)
  • Brakes: 308mm x 29.5mm disc, single-piston caliper (F) / 294mm x 22.0mm disc, single-piston caliper (R)

To download full specifications, click on this link.

2010 Volkswagen Multivan Specifications & Pricing

Volkswagen Multivan Comfortline 103kW TDI (from $49,990*)

  • Engine: 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel with 103kW & 340Nm
  • Transmissions: Seven-speed DSG
  • Driven Wheels: Front
  • Fuel Consumption (L/100km): 8.2 (A)
  • CO2 Emissions (g/km): 216 (A)
  • Brakes: 308mm x 29.5mm disc, single-piston caliper (F) / 294mm x 22.0mm disc, single-piston caliper (R)

Volkswagen Multivan Comfortline 132kW TDI (from $56,990*)

  • Engine: 2.0-litre four-cylinder twin-turbo-diesel with 132kW & 400Nm
  • Transmission: Seven-speed DSG
  • Driven Wheels: Front/All (Optional)
  • Fuel Consumption (L/100km): 8.1 (A) / 8.8 (4MOTION)
  • CO2 Emissions (g/km): 214 (A) /232 (4MOTION)
  • Brakes: 340mm x 32.5mm disc, twin-piston caliper (F) / 294mm x 22.0mm disc, single-piston caliper (R)

Options (available on 132kW TDI only):

  • 4MOTION: $4000*
  • Highline & DSG: $17,000*
  • Highline, DSG & 4MOTION: $21,000*

To download full specifications, click on this link.

*Pricing is a guide as recommended to us by the manufacturer and does not include dealer delivery, on-road or statutory charges.

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