Volkswagen T6 Caravelle (2015 – 2022) Review

Volkswagen T6 Caravelle (2015 – 2022) At A Glance


+Quiet and refined seven-seater with lots of interior space, impressive road handling for its size, strong range of efficient diesel engines.

-Isn't that different to the old T5, expensive to buy new, ride can get bumpy on rough roads, rear seats are heavy and cumbersome to remove.

The Volkswagen Caravelle is one of the largest and classiest MPVs on the market, with its boxy design providing spacious, car-like comfort for up to six passengers. Popular with taxi drivers and airport shuttle firms, the Caravelle is good to drive and surprisingly efficient, for its size. However, with prices starting from £37,000 including VAT, Volkswagen's people carrier is an expensive choice for family buyers. 

Owing to the fact that it is based on the Transporter, the Caravelle majors on flexibility, with its floor rail system making it painless to configure the two rows of seats and plastic multi-functional table. Getting in and out is simple too, with the vehicle's twin-sliding doors and low flat floor providing easy access for all ages. 

The seats can be removed completely, returning the Caravelle to its original van-like state. However, be warned, the seats are very heavy and bulky, which makes their removal strictly a two person job. 

On the road Caravelle handles keenly, with responsive steering and lots of front-end grip. Engine and road noise levels are well-supressed while general comfort is high, although the ride can get a little bumpy on uneven roads.

The Caravelle feels stable and predictable at motorway speeds though and its 1.9 metre height means it easily fits into most multi-story car parks, while the light steering and large mirrors make parking relatively painless.

There are four engines to choose from - two diesels and two petrols - but it is the 150PS 2.0 TDI that shines through as the best with punchy performance for overtaking slow traffic and claimed economy in the mid-40s. Volkswagen also offers a bi-turbo 2.0 TDI with 204PS, should you want more power for your people, carrier. 

Despite its considerable £37,000+ list price, the Volkswagen Caravelle has lots of likeable traits and its practical nature and affordable running costs make it well-suited for taxi firms and airport shuttle duty. Family buyers will need more convincing to spend so much though, with the Caravelle's starting price being £10,000 more than a Ford Galaxy or SEAT Alhambra.

Ask Honest John

What is the best used seven-seater under £15,000?

"I need a larger car. I have two young children and will soon have newborn twins. Please can you recommend a suitable seven-seater? I would prefer an SUV, I currently have a 2015 Honda CR-V and love it. But am realistic that an MPV is maybe the most practical. I also drive 15k miles per annum with work so reliability (and low maintenance costs) are important."
I think a van-based MPV will be the best option. A seven-seat SUV will give you practicality for your family to travel in comfort, but the third row of seats (which rise up from the boot floor) will reduce storage space to near zero. A van-based MPV will give you seven-seats and a useable boot, which will carry pushchairs and overnight bags. I would recommend something based on a medium-size van, like the Ford Tourneo Custom, Toyota Proace Verso or Volkswagen Caravelle.
Answered by Dan Powell

What's the best eight seat van for ride comfort?

"What's the best Volkswagen Transporter type van with eight seats? We have bumpy road occasionally and transport large items so seats coming out would be good, too. "
The ride quality on a van-based MPV will always be on the firm side of comfortable. Vans tend to use leaf suspension (at the rear) which makes them better suited for carrying heavy loads but bumpy when unladen. The Volkswagen T6 Caravelle is very good. But I would also consider the Toyota Proace Verso. The Toyota is better equipped as standard and is sold with a five-year-warranty:
Answered by Dan Powell

We need a family car for six - what do you recommend?

"We have a seven year old Hyundai i800 which is used predominantly for holiday trips at home and in Europe. We have four teenagers and carry up to six bikes on a towbar carrier and inside. The car is not particularly comfortable and is now starting to cost money. What would be your recommendations for replacing it bearing in mind we live in Scotland and the Hyundai has never performed well in snow and ice?"
We'd recommend the Toyota Proace Verso. It's got lots of space and comes with five-year warranty, so it ought to be reliable. Alternatively consider the Ford Tourneo Connect. It might be worth fitting winter tyres to either these to help in the snow. Or look at the Volkswagen Caravelle - you can get a four-wheel-drive version, but it's expensive.
Answered by Andrew Brady

I need a petrol van-based people carrier - what should I look at?

"I have a large family and currently have a Volkswagen Caravelle TDI which is causing us misery as I only do short journeys and the DPF is a nightmare. I need a similar petrol van but can’t find one in our price range £25k and that can fit us all in comfortably. Any thoughts? I can’t go smaller as it would mean moving seats everytime I need to get kids in and out. "
I'm afraid the options are rather limited when it comes to large, petrol-powered vans. One alternative could be the all-electric Nissan e-NV200 Combi; it's based on the panel van and gets seven-seats and will cover 130+ miles on a single charge: Or you could buy a petrol SUV with seven-seats, but that'll mean moving seats to get the kids in and out. If you are willing to make this compromise, the accomplished Skoda Kodiaq would be a worthy alternative: Personally, I'd go for the Ford Tourneo Connect. For sure, it isn't as practical as the larger Volkswagen Caravelle, but it is easy to drive, comfortable and available with petrol power:
Answered by Dan Powell
More Questions

What does a Volkswagen T6 Caravelle (2015 – 2022) cost?