BERLIN -- Volkswagen has added a plug-in hybrid version of its latest T7 Multivan, as well as moving the seven-seat people mover to the MQB platform that underpins most of the automaker's passenger cars.
VW's commercial vehicles division unveiled the T7 in a lavish digital ceremony on Thursday celebrating the van's 70-year production history, highlighting the Multivan's sales success since its debut in 1949.
It said the T7 is aimed at families and active sporty people. Its MQB platform, which also underpins the latest, smaller Caddy van, means it has a more car-like driving experience and more advanced technology.
The T7's 215-hp (218 metric hp) plug-in hybrid drivetrain combines a turbocharged gasoline engine with an electric motor and 13 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery. It has a purely electric range of around 50 km (31 miles).
"The range of course depends on the way the driver handles the car, but it should offer more than enough for inner city driving," said Kai Grünitz, head of development for the commercial vehicles division.
The engine powertrain lineup also will include two four-cylinder gasoline engines, as well as a four-cylinder turbodiesel unit.
The T7 (the number seven stands for the seventh generation) will be available in different lines, with two-tone color offerings and full color ranges available.
The T7 offers 29 driver assistance systems. It is VW's first commercial vehicle to get the automaker's IQ.DRIVE system which enables semi-automated driving at speeds of up to 210 kph using adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assistance functions. Standard equipment includes Car2X (local warning system), automatic emergency braking at low speeds and lane keeping.
It will also be offer as a stretched wheelbase option that is 200mm longer than the standard version with a larger luggage compartment with up to 4,053 liters of luggage capacity and room, for example, for large electric bicycles.