Volkswagen’s small van narrowly missed out on a ‘gong’ at the Fleet Van awards this year, losing out in the end to the new Fiat Doblo Cargo.
But had the judges been assessing this new upgraded model, which is due in UK showrooms this month, things may have been different.
Not only has VW added a range of Euro V engines which promise up to 13% more fuel economy and lower CO2 emissions but there’s also a redesigned front end, other minor upgrades and – more importantly in the health and safety stakes – the addition of ESP stability control as a standard fitment across the range.
It’s all part of a renewed fleet push by the German firm which has seen it make enormous inroads into the fleet market this year, a fact rewarded by the title of Van Fleet Manufacturer of the Year at our prestigious awards.
The first thing you’ll notice about the new model is its fresh face, with differently-shaped headlights.
But it’s under the bonnet that the most impressive changes have taken place.
The old engines have been junked in favour of common rail Euro V compliant TDI ones, which come at 1.6-litres and 2.0-litres.
The smaller engines have power outputs of 75bhp and 102bhp while the bigger ones offer 110bhp and 140bhp.
There is also a Maxi version on offer with extra loadspace and – unique in this sector – a four-wheel drive 4MOTION variant. Volkswagen also offers its DSG gearbox with either six or seven speeds on higher-powered models.
Also new are more comfortable seats, daytime running lights, a gearshift indicator and a new power steering system.
Volkswagen has also launched a + series which gives enhanced payloads and a BlueMotion badge which involves the fitting of a stop-start system to enhance fuel economy.
Prices start at £12,100 ex-VAT and rise to £22,690 ex-VAT.