Everything you need to know about the Volkswagen Transporter

In production for over 70 years, the Volkswagen Transporter is among the best-selling commercial vehicles on the market. Businesses have found a use for these hardy and reliable medium-sized vans. If you’re interested in acquiring one, read on for everything you need to know about the VW Transporter.


History of the Volkswagen Transporter

In production in some form since 1950, the Volkswagen Transporter has been around longer than the vast majority of light commercial vehicles (LCVs) on the road today.

Each generation of the Transporter is marked numerically, starting with the original T1 edition of the model and running all the way up to the T6, which arrived on the market in 2016, followed by a T6.1 facelift in 2019. Diversity has always been the selling point of the Transporter, with body styles including panel van, minibus, pickup, crew van and campervan having been available at some point or another during the model’s lifespan.

With upwards of 12 million units having sold worldwide by 2015, the VW’s Transporter is .


Volkswagen Transporter Awards

Having been around as long as it has, the Volkswagen Transporter has scooped entire cabinets worth of trophies in its time. The most recent T6.1 took home ‘Medium Van of the Year’ and ‘Used Van of the Year’ at the What Van? Awards 2021.


What variants of the Volkswagen Transporter are there?

The Transporter can be spec’d to meet a variety of business needs. Focusing on the latest T6 family of commercial vans, you’ll have two wheelbases and two roof sizes to choose from in the panel van, which drastically alters your cargo space. This means there’s almost certainly going to be a VW Transporter T6 that’s well adapted to your business needs. However, which is the best VW Transporter will depend on exactly how you intend to use it. 

Versions of the Volkswagen Transporter van that are currently in production include:


  • Panel Van – well suited to all kinds of business, the Transporter 6.1 Panel Van offers a load volume between 8m3 and 9.3m3, depending on the dimensions you go for. Featuring a single row of seats in the cab, cargo can be placed or removed through side and rear doors.
  • Kombi – if you often have people to move as well as stock or equipment, the Kombi edition of the model may offer the best of both worlds. This variant sacrifices some of the load volume to provide seats for up to six people, by adding an additional row behind the driver.
  • Shuttle – with seats for nine passengers across three rows, the Transporter 6.1 Shuttle is a comfortable and reliable minicab option, though cargo space is minimal.
  • Chassis Cab – with a single driver’s cab adjoined by a robust chassis, this version of the model is ready to be converted for use as a pickup, dropside or tipper van, among other custom VW Transporter options.


Volkswagen Transporter best features

VW have had plenty of time to fine-tune their craft when it comes to the Transporter, so it’s no surprise the latest T6.1 edition is packed full of useful features that make using this commercial vehicle easy and stress-free. These include:



The Transporter sits comfortably within the medium section of the light commercial vehicle market, and if you’re looking at the panel van; the two wheelbases, three roof heights and four gross weights offer plenty of variety. These options mean that your load space can vary from a minimum of 5.8m3 up to a roomy 9.3m3. Among the wheelbases, you’ll get 2,570mm load length in the shorter option, while the longer of the two provides up to 2,970mm. If you decide to go for a Combi edition of the Transporter, you can expect load volumes to fall to between 3.5m3 and 4.4m3, in return for that additional row of seating.



The cabin on any variant of the T6.1 Transporter comes modern, stylish and well-equipped as standard. Throughout the cabin you’ll find hard wearing materials that both look smart and hold up well against the daily demands of any commercial vehicle. Meanwhile, the driver’s seat has height, reach, rake and lumbar adjustment for maximum levels of comfort when out on the road.



The Transport range has an impressive set of safety features, including but not limited to; adaptive cruise control, high-beam assist, driver alert, trailer stabilisation and automatic post-collision braking. Optional extras include things like lane-keeping assist, which is ideal for frequent motorway users, as well as side protection sensors, traffic sign recognition or rear traffic alert. That should go so way to explaining how and why the T6.1 recently achieved a Gold medal designation after Euro NCAP crash tests.


Engines and performance

All of the latest Transporter van range is powered by the same 2.0 Litre, four-cylinder TDI diesel engines and each are Euro 6d compliant. These begin at an 89bhp option, before stepping up to a 108bhp TDI 110 edition or 148bhp TDI 150 unit, then capping things off is a twin-turbocharged 196bhp engine. Whereas previous generations of the Transporter offered petrol options, there are no such editions in the T6.1 lineup. An electric VW Transporter is available but is produced and adapted by partner company ABT.


VW Transporter 2019 running costs

Depending on the engine you go for, you can expect your VW Transporter to achieve somewhere in the region of 32.5 to 39.8 miles per gallon, which is similar territory to other vans in this category.


Where can I find a Volkswagen Transporter for my business?

Whether you’ve set your sights on a Volkswagen van or still need help finding the right fit, get in touch with the team at Northgate Vehicle Hire today. Our flexible hire options can provide your business with the tools it needs to thrive, and you can avoid the large upfront cost of purchasing when you hire a business van near me instead. Use our online van finder to browse the commercial vehicles we currently stock, or alternatively, call us on 0333 0430 001.  




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