Volkswagen T5 Caravelle (2010–2015)

Last updated 4 June 2018

Similar cabin to Volkswagen car models, very quiet and refined on the move, luxury feel, plenty of rear space, strong performance from 2.0 TDI engine, upmarket looks.
There are considerably cheaper seven seat people carriers available, running costs are high, rear seats are heavy and awkward to lift out. Catastrophic engine problems with 2.0BiTDI after 60k miles.
Updated 16 December 2011
Volkswagen launched Caravelle Edition 25

Only 225 UK examples were available in the UK, all exclusively finished in Candy White, or optional Reflex Silver metallic paint, with unique styling cues to help this latest model stand out from the...

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As luxurious and genuinely spacious people carriers go, few vehicles are as good as the Volkswagen Caravelle. As is pretty obvious, it's based on the Volkswagen Transporter van, so the boxy shape means there's masses of space in the back and it can carry seven adults in real comfort.

You're probably more familiar seeing the Caravelle being used by hotels and airports, or as an upmarket private hire vehicle, but it's ideal as a family carrier too - especially if you have a large family. It's very versatile thanks to rails that are integrated into the floor and allow the second and third row of seats (and the clever multifunction table) to be moved backwards or forwards to maximise luggage space or legroom.

The rear bench can also be converted into a large, almost completely flat bed. Plus there's an optional 'sleep pack' which can turn the Caravelle into a campervan with a bed extension for the rear seats and additional blinds for the windows.

This 2010 Volkswagen Caravelle isn't actually all new, it's a thoroughly revised versios of the T5 Caravelle from 2003, but there are key changes, particularly inside where there's a high-class interior that's very similar to Volkswagen passenger cars like the Golf. It also uses Volkswagen's 2.0 TDI common rail diesel which is far smoother and quieter than the previous diesels in the Caravelle range.

This newer engine is also more economical and has longer service intervals than before which means lower running cost. However the Caravelle is still expensive to buy new, especially when there are cheaper seven-seaters available - although few are as upmarket as the Volkswagen.

Driven: Volkswagen Caravelle

In the MPV space race there are few vehicles that can match the Volkswagen T5 Caravelle for sheer size or all-round ability. The Caravelle is effectively the heavyweight champion of the large MPV sector, combing large van-like dimensions with the driving characteristics and cabin quality of a luxurious family hatchback.

Read our first drive here >>



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