Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles will launch the new version of the Caddy at the end of the year. The 5th generation is based on the MQB platform of the Golf VIII. This makes the Caddy the most modern representative in its segment in all areas. A first test drive in a pre-production model.
Family man, recreational athlete or craftsman, the Caddy is there for everyone
Artisans and courier drivers love him just as much as fathers and recreational athletes. He is a universal talent, versatile, functional and with a huge amount of space. No wonder that he is in pole position among the city delivery vans in Germany, the Caddy. This VW model has been available since 1979. It started as a small pick-up based on the Golf I. Today the Caddy is a thoroughly professional multi-function vehicle. It is available as a cargo (without rear windows on the side), as a station wagon and as a van. The latter body version can carry up to seven people.
New assistance systems in the Caddy
At the end of the year, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles will be launching the 5th generation. It is a completely new development. No piece of sheet metal was taken over from its predecessor. Reason: Caddy number five is based on the MQB architecture of the Golf VIII. And that includes not only the drives, but also all of the electronics, including the assistance systems, 18 in total. No competitor can keep up here. Six have been added to the twelve from the last generation, including Travel Assist. It already enables semi-autonomous driving (Level 2).
Modern cockpit in the caddy
As square, practical, and good as the exterior of the Caddy, the interior is just as cool. Those who do not tick the basic version in the price list are immersed in a digital world: behind the steering wheel a configurable cockpit (10,25 inches), in the middle of the dashboard the large infotainment touchscreen. Including the so-called touch slider for volume and temperature, just like the new Golf has. The slider is not as easy to use as a classic rotary control, but it saves the manufacturer money.
Efficient colleague, little fuel
On the other hand, the customer should save fuel. This is why the Caddy got the latest drive developments under the hood. Because almost 90 percent of customers choose the Caddy with a diesel engine, the focus here is clearly on the compression-ignition engine. The bandwidth of the two-liter TDI ranges from 55 kW (75 PS) to 90 kW (122 PS). All diesels have what is known as twin-dosing emission control. With this two-way SCR catalytic converter including AdBlue injection, nitrogen oxides (NOx) are reduced to a value that can hardly be measured.
Test run with the pre-series
On a first test drive - these were still pre-production models - the Caddy proved to be a balanced buddy. Powerful, agile, quiet and with manageable driving characteristics. The steering was designed more directly, the chassis reinforced and a new rear axle specially designed for the rear, which is able to cope with the high payload without grumbling and to guarantee safe cornering.
Gasoline is feasible, but diesel pressure is better
In addition to the diesel units, the Caddy is also available with the well-known 1,5-liter TSI. It has an output of 84 kW (114 hp). To mobilize them, however, you need a lively gas foot, especially since the four-cylinder only sends a maximum of 220 Newton meters into the transmission. The TSI is therefore not a real recommendation. Elasticity is particularly lacking when fully loaded.
Alternative drive coming
Volkswagen answers questions about alternative drives with natural gas and plug-in hybrids. However, both should not go on the market until 2022, whereby the eHybrid can still tip, as was heard from the development department. At least one thing is certain: there will be no all-electric new-generation Caddy. This task is currently carried out by a Caddy 4 version converted by Abt and in two years' time the ID Buzz as a van and cargo.
Model pupil of functionality
The Caddy deserves the grade 1+ when it comes to functionality. The engineers seem to have got the most out of what was possible at 4,50 meters (normal version) and 4,85 meters (long version). Whether bicycles or surf boards, there is space for almost any type of sports equipment in the VW Truck's hold. With tradespeople, especially with the maxi version, the thumbs up should go, as a forklift can push a euro pallet into the car both over the rear and through the open side door. The normal Caddy holds 3.300 liters of storage volume, the Maxi has 4.000 liters.
The prices of the new Caddy
Because it still takes almost six months to launch, VW has not yet announced any prices. You should therefore orientate yourself on today's models, plus the usual surcharge for the generation change. The cargo caddy should start at just over 20.000 euros, the estate version at around 25.000 euros.