TG's long-term VW Multivan is fast becoming the road-trip wagon of choice
It’s already been said many a time over the past six months that we’ve been custodians of the Multivan – it’s the best wagon you’d need for a family at home or abroad. This month’s jaunt was to the Lake District and Coniston Water (famed for speed records and the legendary Donald Campbell who sadly lost his life there in 1967), with a preamble through the Yorkshire Dales.
Loading up the back bench and boot with luggage is a breeze, if like us you need the back seats leaving in for passengers later in the trip. We fit in (with room to spare) everything from swimwear and the week’s luggage to a truckload of nappies, the high chair and toddler’s travel cot.
Naptime on the road could be a potential issue, but the movement of the car does seem to outweigh the cabin rattles and generally noisy cabin.
Both trim levels available (this one’s Style) come with seven individually removable seats and the standard layout means sitting in the very back is still spacious enough for a 6ft passenger, just be careful not to close the middle seats onto their knees once they’ve got comfy.
Fully loaded with passengers the interior is still spacious enough, especially with the van’s roof height and massive glass roof (the panoramic roof is a £1,000 option). This means the best place to travel is in the middle rows as the 360° views are immense, if your location plays ball.
Storage is plentiful as you would imagine, at the very front there’s pop-out cupholders, two glovebox compartments, a dashtop cubby, huge door pockets complete with waste bins, and two USB ports. In the back there’s underseat storage, more huge door pockets, USB ports and tray tables. You can control the heating from here too via the screen above your head, so you don’t have to disrupt the nominated driver from their job at hand.
Physical buttons on the steering wheel are a doddle to use. Controlling everything you need while driving. The adaptive cruise is mostly good, if a tad skittish, same could be said for the brake assist, which seems to be overly sensitive on the motorway, specifically to red vans during the day and well lit lorries in a different lane at night.
The sliding doors moment. I get that it’s seen as a gimmick by some but if you do have kids or even easily pleased adults, they’re great. Both as an impromptu game of peekaboo or for a spot of wild lunching by the side of vista points in the Lake District. Pop the sliding table up and look up from your lunch, out to the view. You can open and close them from the driver’s seat via the centre console buttons if you’re in full taxi mode or from a button on the pillar by the doors themselves.
Full belly and ready for the off again, the boost in torque from the hybrid powertrain is quick enough to get you silently moving through the crowds of gathered sheep on the moors to start the long drive home, working out the maths of life and what I’d need to sell to afford one of these.
Words: Elliot Webb