VW Multivan T7: The new Bulli drives so cleverly

VW Multivan T7: The new Bulli drives so cleverly

VW Multivan T7: The new Bulli drives so cleverly

VW presents the new Bulli: The VW T7 builds on its predecessor on a new platform as a Multivan in its versatility. The first test drive with all information, pictures, data, prices.

  • Market launch with two gasoline engines and a plug-in hybrid
  • Also as a long version with a trunk of up to 4053 liters
  • The predecessor T6.1 remains in the range
  • Price: From 44,839 euros, diesel only from March 2022

Anyone who imagined the premiere of the new VW Multivan as a classic series change is completely wrong. Because VW Commercial Vehicles is not completely replacing its predecessor T6 with the T7, but is simply expanding the range of useful vehicles with an additional model.

Anyone who imagined the premiere of the new VW Multivan as a classic series change is completely wrong. Because VW Commercial Vehicles is not completely replacing its predecessor T6 with the T7, but is simply expanding the range of useful vehicles with an additional model.

Whereby the new T7 takes on the role of the more smart, chic and cool lifestylers, the T6.1 remains in the range as a specialist for commercial use and the basis of the motorhome icon California .

New VW bus: the Bulli feeling remains!

At first glance at the new one it becomes clear: The commercial vehicle division has managed to transfer the iconic approach of the Bulli, which has been built since 1949, into the present day, without any annoying nostalgia. The typical Bulli side line of the T3 with the dominant horizontal side line was retained and is now emphasized even more by a chrome strip.

However, the new Multivan also cites the second generation of the T4 with the hood that is concisely pulled forward beneath the windshield – this was necessary because the engine moved from the rear of the T3 to the front.

And this is exactly where a secret of the Bulli success is explained . Due to the rear engine of the T3 and the resulting short front overhang, the T3 driver always had the feeling of sitting on the front axle, that is, like a truck, “on the box”. The VW engineers were able to maintain this typical seating feeling in the following generations. And it is the same with the new one: way up – and felt way ahead.

In contrast, the proportions of the new Multivan have changed. Compared to the T6.1, it was 4 centimeters wider at 1.94 meters and 7 centimeters longer at 4.97 meters. The wheelbase has also increased slightly to 3.12 meters. But in everyday life it is much more important that the T7 has shrunk by 7 centimeters to 1.90 meters with an almost identical interior height – that now makes it completely suitable for parking lots!

VW Bulli: Up to 4005 liters of trunk

The T7 offers plenty of space. In figures: 469 liters of luggage space with full seating (up to seven individual seats), 1844 liters behind the second row of seats and 3672 liters behind the first row of seats when used up to the roof. If that’s not enough, you can opt for the long version of the Multivan for an extra charge of 1862 euros (2118 for the 100 kW petrol engine) – with the same wheelbase: the 5.18 meter vehicle length then offers a maximum of space for up to 4005 liters.

Variability is the order of the day between the front and the rear . The back seat in the third row has been abolished, there are now only single seats in the rear that can be installed and removed and folded up for easier boarding. They can be placed individually, in twos or threes next to each other in the rear and enable the transport of four passengers plus two or three bicycles.

But even if the new seats have been 25 percent lighter, they still weigh a lot at up to 29 kilos. Because the new rail system (also with a sliding trolley table) is supplied with electricity, even those at the back can look forward to heated seats.

New VW bus: the Bulli feeling remains!

Always online: the VW bus is technically up to date

Like the exterior, the entire interior was also redesigned. Everything looks good and modern, feels good too – apart from the somewhat loveless side panels on the doors. Because the shift-by-wire circuit for the DSG gearbox, which is always standard, and the electric parking brake have moved into the dashboard, the center console can be completely dispensed with – the practical step-through between the driver and front passenger seats works.

On the other hand, the modern operating system, as we know it from the VW Golf or ID.3 and ID.4 , can not be compared : Impractical and unlit touch sliders, a digital cockpit with a center display up to 10 inches in size as well as a total 29 assistance systems – many of them optional, of course. And because the T7 is always online, it offers the latest connectivity options .

As standard , the Multivan now always comes with two practical sliding doors, the dual clutch gearbox DSG, shift paddles, keyless go as well as front / lane assist and center airbag, which inflates between the front seats when required. Fine matrix light (1368 euros), head-up display (1243 euros) and other ingredients confirm the statement by VW Commercial Vehicles that the new Multivan is a vehicle with premium claims on wheels up to 18 inches in size. 14 exterior colors that can be ordered and three eye-catching two-tone variants ensure a stylish appearance.

The VW T7 is also available as a plug-in hybrid

The engine strategy of VW Commercial Vehicles for the market launch is surprising: If the T6.1 runs exclusively with diesel engines, the new T7, on the other hand, has none at all – at least until the beginning of 2022, when a 150 hp diesel engine is added for 48,748 euros. There is currently the front-wheel drive Multivan with two four-cylinder turbo petrol engines with 100 and 150 kW (44,839 and 49,932 euros) and a plug-in hybrid with 160 kW system output. We could already drive all three engines.

The Multivan eHybrid was somewhat disappointing, as it can travel up to 50 kilometers electrically with its battery (10.4 kWh net balance). It starts purely electrically and maintains this state until the battery is empty. That works fine. But if the 1.4 TSI with its 110 kW / 150 PS takes over the drive, the eHybrid loses its relaxed suppleness: The unit visibly and audibly struggles with the two-tonne van and the specially designed 6-speed DSG works a bit overwhelmed with slightly hectic gear changes. So it pays to always start with a fully charged battery: the charging process takes 5 hours at the socket and 3.4 hours at the wallbox.

Gasoline engine in the VW Multivan? Fits!

The smaller 1.5-liter petrol engine with 100 kW / 136 PS is officially less powerful than the hybrid auxiliary unit, but is better suited to the new VW Bulli: With it and the always matching 7-speed DSG, cruising is great. The maximum torque of 220 Nm does not sound like much, but is probably sufficient in almost all driving situations. If you need more power, for example because you have to tow heavy loads (up to 2000 kilos in the T7), you can opt for the 2.0 TSI with 150 kW / 204 PS and a torque of 320 Nm with a clear conscience . It also convinces with its smoothness, but will certainly consume a little more.

How much the gasoline engines in the T7 consume remains in the dark: With 6.7 (100 kW) and 7.7 liters Super (150 kW), VW only gives outdated NEDC values ​​in its brochures instead of more realistic WLTP values. The first ADAC test will soon have to provide clarity. The ADAC test engineers will probably also confirm that the suspension and steering set-up of the multivan was successful.

At the beginning of 2022 there will be a diesel with 110 kW / 150 PS , which will consume up to one liter less than in the T6.1, which is due, among other things, to the up to 200 kilos lower weight and sophisticated aerodynamics.

VW T7 price: From 44,839 Euros

The T7 is not cheap with a base price of 44,839 – and the upper limit is open anyway, depending on the individualization requirements. For comparison: If you want to enter the Bulli class with the basic T6.1 , you will pay almost 3000 euros less. The graduation of equipment has been redesigned: It starts with the simple Multivan, then comes life and style. As usual, there is a well-equipped special model called Energetic, with various edition models to follow later.

In addition to the remaining T6.1 as a transporter and the new Multivan, the third and fourth in the group of T-models will follow in 2022: the fully electric lifestyle van ID. Buzz and the urban transporter ID. Buzz Cargo. Then the Bulli family is complete.

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