Rear-wheel drive vans complete the diesel Crafter line-up, says Dan Gilkes.
SECTOR Large van POWER 122-177bhp CO2 192-237g/km PRICE £25,010-£40,940
Volkswagen’s Crafter van has a model for every sector of the market. That means rear-wheel drive as before, but also front- and all-wheel drive vans and chassis cabs. All three come with six-speed manual and eight-speed automatic transmissions.
Front-drive arrived first in the UK, along with 4Motion. Rear-drive Crafters, with a choice of single or twin rear wheels, have come later.
The 122bhp engine is only available with twin rear wheels on the heavier CR50 model, the 140bhp gets single rear-wheels on CR30 and CR35 vans, while the range-topping 177bhp engine is the only one that can be ordered with the optional eight-speed automatic transmission.
There are two rear-drive wheelbases, though the longer chassis is available with a choice of two body lengths. The shorter vans can be had with a low or a high roof, while the longer models get the high roof as standard, or an optional super high roof. Rear-drive load volumes range from 9.9m3 through to 16.1m3, with this long wheelbase, high roof delivering 14.4m3.
There are two trim levels, Startline and Trendline, but buyers can add a Business Pack to the Trendline van, including an alarm, Climatic air conditioning, overhead storage, parking sensors front and rear, The pack costs £1,518, a saving of more than £1,345 over the individual options.
In normal road driving you’d be hard-pressed to tell which wheels are doing the work. You will notice the RWD axle when loading though, as the floor sits 100mm higher in a rear-drive van. The RWD is also around 100kg heavier, cutting into the payload and will consume slightly more fuel and produce a little more CO2 than its FWD counterpart. If you need the benefits of a driven rear axle though, these are unlikely to be insurmountable problems.