Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has shown the new Transporter 6.1, which many campervan converters will be eagerly waiting to see, for the first time, following the debut of the passenger-carrying Multivan/Caravelle version back in February this year. It chose the suffix 6.1 because the technical changes to the sixth generation of the Transporter go beyond any normal model update.
The new Transporter 6.1 will have the usual choice of body variants: panel van, Kombi and single or double cab pick-up, and feature a wide range of new features and enhancements, including a zero emissions, battery-powered model.
Technical enhancements include a switch from hydraulic to electro-mechanical power steering – a complex system replacement that normally happens only when moving completely to the next generation. This makes a new spectrum of driver assistance systems available, resulting in an increase in safety and ease of use.
New assistance systems include technologies such as Lane Assist (actively keeps the vehicle in its lane), Park Assist (enables parking with automatic steering), side protection (warns if getting dangerously close to obstacles or pedestrians), Rear Traffic Alert (provides protection when reversing out of a parking space) and Trailer Assist (thanks to automatic steering makes manoeuvring with a trailer child’s play). The range of new systems is supplemented by a dynamic Road Sign Display function (available in combination with navigation system). Another standard feature of the panel van and Kombi is the new Cross Wind Assist system. It stabilises the Transporter 6.1 if it gets caught by a strong gust of wind, for example on a bridge. Also fitted as standard: the Post-Collision Braking System and Hill Start Assist.
The Transporter 6.1 has a redesigned cab. These include a 230-volt electric socket by the driver’s seat and a lockable compartment under the double bench seat on the passenger side. In addition, a new way of loading long items of cargo has been devised; they can now be pushed under the double bench seat on the passenger side (under-seat loading function). This increases the maximum cargo compartment length from 2,450 mm to 2,800 mm and with the extended wheelbase from 2,900 mm to 3,300 mm. The Transporter 6.1 is also equipped with a separate cargo space locking system as standard (panel van and Kombi with bulkhead). This allows the cargo compartment to be locked up separately from the cab.
The standard specification of the Transporter 6.1 has also been enhanced. Added as new features on all versions are electric windows, central locking, electrically adjustable heated wing mirrors, new H7 headlights, bright, energy-efficient interior lights using energy-efficient LED technology and the Composition Audio radio system with Bluetooth hands-free function.
Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has tailored the workspace in the Transporter 6.1 to the requirements of the digital world. Now available as an option is the third generation of the modular infotainment matrix (MIB3). Its new systems enable use of completely new applications and online services. The most important feature of the new vehicle electrical system architecture is an integrated SIM card (eSIM). This eSIM opens up a new array of Web-based functions and services.
The Transporter 6.1 is being launched with efficient 2.0-litre turbo diesel engines. The 2.0 TDI engines deliver 66 kW / 90 PS, 81 kW / 110 PS, 110 kW / 150 PS and 146 kW / 199 PS respectively. They all fulfil the Euro-6d-TEMP emissions standard. The 150 and 199 PS versions will optionally be available with all-wheel drive (4MOTION). Based on a partnership with ABT, the Transporter 6.1 will also be offered as a zero-emission vehicle (82 kW / 112 PS) with a payload of almost 1.2 tonnes. Battery capacities of up to 77.6 kWh enable driving ranges of more than 400 km (NEDC) – making the electric versions ideal for commercial use in the urban world.