Volkswagen launched the 2022 Multivan for the European market. In its new avatar, the largest MPV offering from the German automaker has gone through significant reinventions in its 71-year history. It is built on VW’s new MQB platform instead of the old Transporter. The new 7-seater van will replace the Caravelle and will be available in an optional plug-in hybrid version.
The 2022 Multivan looks inspired by the original Volkswagen Type 2 aka Kombi or Microbus, especially in the new two-tone grey and orange paint job. However, the whole vehicle has been completely redesigned and reflects a new futuristic European design. The boxy body now looks much more modern thanks to the new bumpers and full-width daytime running light (just like on the new VW ID3 electric car). The fascia seems shorter and flatter compared to its predecessor, resembling the old school vans.
The sizable quarter window looks familiar as the classic Kombi/Microbus. Together with the futuristic wheel designs and the intricate mesh on its face, the whole package has a playful look. The strong character lines running across its sides also adds to its character. The Multivan comes with the standard dimension of 4,973mm length, 1,941mm width and 1,903mm height, however, there is also a 5,173mm-long extended-wheelbase option available. When parked side by side to the Kia Carnival offered in India, the long-wheelbase (LWB) variant seems equal in dimensions. Volkswagen claims the new body to be more aerodynamically efficient and has a towing capacity of up to 2,000kg.
The interior of the Multivan is also claimed to be more flexible and spacious than its predecessor. The 7-seater MPV comes equipped with a multi-function table (which can double up as a centre console), and a second row that can be turned 180-degrees to create a conference-style setup. The five seats in the rear can also be removed altogether for additional storage room if needed. Another interesting change in the cabin is the removal of the centre console which is made possible by the removal of the conventional handbrake and gear selector. The new arrangement has allowed for a flat floor throughout the entire cabin, giving the base version 469 litres of boot space, extending to 1,844 litres with the rearmost seats removed.
The dash area has also gone through a major change and looks modern and futuristic like other Volkswagen’s latest cars. There’s a 10-inch infotainment touchscreen on the centre of the dashboard. The driver also gets a 10.25-inch digital instrument display and a new multifunction steering wheel as standard. A heads-up display, a wireless smartphone charger and a 14-speaker Harmon Kardon sound system are also available as an optional upgrade. VW says there’s more headroom inside the new Multivan than before if the optional sunroof is installed.
For safety, Volkswagen has packed the T7 Multivan with advanced features, including Car2X which allows the MPV to communicate with other vehicles and the highways infrastructure to provide warnings of any oncoming danger. It also gets the new IQ.Drive system, which uses adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assistance functions, road sign recognition and automatic emergency braking.
Talking of powertrain, the new Multivan comes with a range of petrol, diesel and hybrid engines. The entry-level van gets a 134hp 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine, but there’s also a 201hp 2.0-litre unit. Volkswagen informed a 150hp diesel model will also be available in 2022. All these models come with a seven-speed automatic gearbox as standard.
The T7 model now also comes with a new plug-in hybrid engine. This uses a 150hp 1.4-litre petrol engine along with a 116hp electric motor on the front axle to produce a total of 218hp. There’s also a 13kWh battery under the floor that allows for electric-only running on “short urban trips” with a maximum claimed range of around 50km. The hybrid model comes with a six-speed automatic gearbox.
VW has already confirmed that an electric people carrier based on its ID Buzz concept is on the way, so we don’t expect to see an electric-only version of the new Multivan. The pricing of the new T7 Multivan hasn’t been disclosed yet, and we expect it to be disclosed around the launch.
Plans for India? None. Volkswagen is currently preparing to launch the all-new Taigun in India. The German automaker is also working on a replacement for the Vento sedan based on the Virtus that is set to arrive in 2022.