Breaking News | The sixth generation Volkswagen Transporter range gets an exciting new facelift

The sixth generation Volkswagen Transporter range gets an exciting new facelift

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The Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles T-Series range has been renewed with a facelift that will now be called the T6.1. The facelifted Transporter range consists of the Pick Up (Single and Double cab), Panel Van, Crew Bus, Kombi, Caravelle and California. The T6.1 range will go on sale in, Botswana, Namibia and right here in South Africa from January 2021.

In South Africa the T-Series, specifically the infamous Kombi and Caravelle, have been the best-sellers for the past six decades so far. Now in its sixth generation, the Transporter range has sold around 12 million units globally; no other commercial vehicle in the world has been on the market for as long as the Transporter has. 10 097 units of the T6 range have been sold in South Africa since its launch in 2015. The T6.1 will continue the heritage and sales success story of the T-Series model range in South Africa.

So what’s new?

The exterior

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has further improved, redesigned and refined the T6.1, especially at the front. Particularly striking is the radiator grille, which is now considerably larger and forms a single stylistic unit with the new bumper. All elements below the bonnet, like the headlights, are brand-new. On all versions two chrome-plated cross-bars link the new headlights to the radiator grille. The lines of the two cross-bars are continued as LED daytime running lights, stretching out all the way into the housing units of the headlights, which depending on the specification can also be LED. The grille itself is now drawn out into the striking bumper. On the higher specification models a chrome strip also adds a refined touch to the bumper. With or without chrome elements, the new front design emphasises the width and intensifies the charisma of the T6.1. Six newly designed wheels, six new exterior colours and seven newly combined two-tone paintwork finishes round off the new exterior updates to the range.


The all new instrument panel does not only meets the requirements of digitalisation, but also the goal of granting high levels of practicality. The panel has been equipped with an additional shelf in front of the driver. Also you will find what is new, is a larger tray for a smart phone with, an inductive interface for charging which is an optional feature. The air vents in the dashboard can now be adjusted in almost every direction and simultaneously opened or closed using only one slider control. In previous models was a second slider needed for opening and closing. The steering wheel has also been tweaked- 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 simply click.

The infotainment and digitalised instruments

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has re-engineered the entire range of infotainment systems in order to offer an exceptional array of web-based functions and services. With the T6.1, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is offering a vehicle that is equipped with fully digital instruments, like the digital cockpit for one. All T6.1 models are equipped with a Composition Colour radio system as standard, whereas the Caravelle and California models are equipped with the Discover Pro Media system with navigation as standard and on the Kombi Trendline Plus, it is also available as an optional feature. 

The digital Cockpit

The 10.25-inch digital cockpit in the T6.1 trumps above other have to offer. It is fitted as standard in the Caravelle Highline and California. The graphics of the high-contrast display have a flawless, high-quality and noticeable look. The driver has the choice to choose between different screen configurations which is done via the ‘View’ button on the multifunction steering wheel.

The T6.1 steers electro-mechanically

Electro-mechanical power steering is being used for the very first time in the T6.1. This has two major benefits: unlike the hydraulic system it substitutes, the new steering system can be controlled as needed and this decreased fuel consumption. Simultaneously, through its controllability it opens up access to numerous new driver assistance systems. The electro-mechanical power steering system transmits steering commands to the wheels more direct and straightforward than the systems in previous models. That makes the T6.1 remarkably more nimble and precise. In order to make use of the potential of the new steering system paired with the new range of tyres optimised for low rolling resistance, the tuning of the modest and regulated chassis versions has been further optimised in the direction of driving comfort and handling. With the exciting introduction of the optional second-generation chassis control system (DCC) the adjustment options have increased. Via driving profile selection, the driver is now able to set the preferred level of damping almost seamlessly using a slider control. On the conventional chassis versions the damping forces are set dependent on the spring travel and thus ensure that the T6.1 is smoothly kept stable in all load situations. The range of familiar slip and braking control systems has been widely expanded through the addition of the XDS function, which better enhances the handling and traction characteristics of the T6.1 through gentle application of the brakes. As a result of the combination of electro-mechanical power steering, vehicle dynamics control systems and adapted chassis adjustment, an appreciable improvement in handling and driving fun is a feature of the T6.1, while it continues – including on longer journeys – to offer the all too familiar high level of ride comfort and ease.

There are also multiple advanced features and systems included, namely:

o   Safety and Driver Assistance systems

o   Lane Assist

o   Trailer Assist

o   Rear View reversing camera

o   Side Protection

o   Park Assist

o   Manoeuvre Braking function

o   Rear Traffic Alert

o   Crosswind Assist

With six models and numerous specifications, the T6.1 range allows for several specifications

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

The T6.1 range includes:

o   The T6.1 Pick Up

o   The T6.1 Panel Van

o   The T6.1 Crew Bus

o   The T6.1 Kombi

o   The T6.1 Caravelle

o   The T6.1 California Coast

TDI engines deliver between 81kW and 146kW

This T6.1 range will launch with three 2.0-litre turbo diesel (TDI) engines with shared rail injection that are both economical and sustainable. The four-cylinder engines deliver between 81kW and 146kW of power.

2.0-litre TDI delivering 81kW

In the Pick Up Single Cab and Double Cab, 7.5 l/100 km in the Panel Van and 7.3 l/100 km in the Crew Bus and Kombi.

2.0-litre TDI delivering 110kW

In the Pick Up Single Cab, Panel Van, Crew Bus and Kombi.

2.0-litre BiTDI delivering 146 kW

In the Pick Up Double Cab, Crew Bus, Kombi, Caravelle as well as the California Coast.

Recommended Retail Price as of the 1st of September 2020
(VAT and emissions tax included)

T6.1 Pick Up

Single Cab 2.0 TDI 81kW LWB                                     R412 800

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

Double Cab 2.0 TDI 81kW LWB                                               R485 300

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

T6.1 Panel Van

2.0 TDI 81kW LWB                                                                  R530 600

2.0 TDI 110kW DSG® LWB                                                      R568 700

T6.1 Crew Bus

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

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

2.0 BiTDI 146kW 4MOTION® DSG® (5-seater)                        R710 500

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

T6.1 Kombi

2.0 TDI 81kW Trendline                                            R697 700

2.0 TDI 110kW DSG® Trendline                                R726 000

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

T6.1 Caravelle

Highline 2.0 BiTDI 146kW 4MOTION® DSG®             R1 149 400

T6.1 California

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

The Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Pick Up, Panel Van and Crew Bus range comes standard with a helpful 3-year/60 000 km Easy Drive Service Plan, 2-year/unlimited km manufacturer warranty. The Kombi, Caravelle and California range comes standard with a useful 5-year/ 60 000km maintenance plan and a 3-year/ 120 000km manufacturer warranty. The entire T6.1 range comes standard with a 12-year anti-corrosion warranty. The service interval is at 15 000km.


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