Volkswagen’s next California camper is a plug-in hybrid

Volkswagen’s next California camper is a plug-in hybrid
Volkswagen’s next California camper is a plug-in hybrid

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has teased a concept version of its next-generation California camper van ahead of its reveal at the Caravan Salon trade fair in Düsseldorf, Germany, which will run from August 25 to September 3.

This new-generation Volkswagen California is based on the long-wheelbase version of the T7 Multivan people that was revealed in 2021 and rides on the MQB architecture.

It’s set to go into production next year at the company’s plant in Hanover, Germany.

The new California will be available with a plug-in hybrid (PHEV) powertrain for the first time. The related T7 Multivan also comes with an available PHEV powertrain which mates a 1.4-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine with an electric motor and a 13kWh lithium-ion battery to produce a total system output of 160kW.

Volkswagen claims the T7 Multivan can travel up to 50 kilometres on all-electric power according to WLTP testing. It’s unclear if the new California will be able to match this claim.

It’s also unclear if the next-generation California camper will also be available with turbocharged petrol and diesel engines, like the T7 Multivan.

A highlight of the California concept is its pop-up roof that’s claimed to add an extra two metres of height when deployed. The company’s teaser images also show it’ll have two awnings.

Another feature will be a touchscreen in the roof console that’ll be able to control the main camper van settings and also “call up a wide range of information”.

T7 Multivan

The reveal of this new California Concept will mark 35 years since Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles debuted the first-generation model that was based on the T3-generation Type 2 bus.

Volkswagen claims to have produced more than 260,000 California campers over four generations. The current, T6.1-generation model was first revealed in 2019.

At this stage it’s unclear if the new T7 California will be coming to Australia. Volkswagen Australia has indicated the T7 Multivan will be arriving locally in late 2024.

Current T6.1 California Beach

Beyond the new California, Volkswagen has previously confirmed it will be develop a California camper version of its electric ID. Buzz van.

It won’t be coming anytime soon though, as Volkswagen head of research and development Kai Gruenitz recently told Autocar the ID. Buzz California will go on sale globally from 2025.

In the meantime conversion companies are creating their own camper versions of the ID. Buzz.

MORE: Everything Volkswagen California

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