Volkswagen Multivan - long term review - Report No:7 2023 | Top Gear
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Tuesday 26th September
Long-term review

Volkswagen Multivan - long term review

£59,545 / £65,521 as tested / £665pcm
Published: 14 Aug 2023

We're living with a longer VW Multivan fun bus - what do you want to know?

To the crushing disappointment of the TG office, our beloved two-tone fun-bus is no more. Cue the sombre music. For the past six months, the eHybrid Multivan has been one of the most popular cars in the TG garage. This versatile all-rounder has been much more than just a glossed-up van. It has been a family transporter, a video production hub, an office on wheels, and I dare to ask what else…

In fact, we were so distraught to bid it farewell that we shamelessly pleaded with VW to let us keep it until the end of summer. Alas, they said nein. However, they did have a grand gesture up their sleeve. Brace yourselves for the entrance of TG’s fresh new Multivan.

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Now, I know what you're thinking, aside from a change in colour, what sets this new one apart? Well, this is a Multivan Style 'Long' edition. The wheelbase remains unchanged, but they've extended the rear overhang to give it a larger boot, stretching its total length to 5,173mm (up from the previous 4,973mm). That's right, more room for junk in your trunk. Because if you've ever pondered whether you can fit seven adults and their luggage into a standard Multivan, the answer is no. At least, not comfortably.

What’s more, we say goodbye to the 215bhp hybrid powertrain and say hello to a 2.0-litre TSI engine with 201bhp. Now, I must admit, on paper I had my doubts about the eHybrid powertrain. A puny 10kWh battery and a pint-sized 1.4-litre engine powering this bus? Blimey. But I’ve been pleasantly surprised. With the battery topped up, it has performed extremely well on shorter journeys. Although, once that battery runs out, the little engine becomes very apparent. Especially with a full load. That's where the conventional petrol or diesel options become a more appealing option, particularly if you plan to embark on epic road trips or aren’t keen on regular charging.

Other differences? The £1,050 panoramic roof has disappeared, but I must admit, I'm quite content with its absence. No longer being exposed to the scorching sun brings me great relief. Wireless phone charging and the ergo comfort electric seats are also off the menu, and guess what? I recently discovered that those fancy seats offer a massage function. Can you believe it? I've been missing out on a whole world of relaxation while driving around like a pleb.

Finally, one thing both have in common is the Discover Pro navigation and infotainment system, but don't expect us to shower it with praises. We're well known to shower VW with complaints about their disastrous decisions in that department. Luckily, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto come to the rescue for all your navigation and entertainment needs. And thank goodness for that, because this month we'll be putting our shiny new Multivan to the ultimate test – a sun-soaked summer road trip to our neighbours across the channel. Bon voyage, mes amis.

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