Volkswagen Teases Plug-In Hybrid California Camper Concept

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The Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles released teaser renderings for a new plug-in-hybrid California concept camper. The full debut is on August 25 at the Caravan Salon show in Düsseldorf, Germany. The production version will arrive in 2024.

The California concept uses the long variant of the Multivan as a starting point. It features a pop-up roof adding 6.5 feet (two meters) of height when deployed. The teaser image shows an extending awning on both sides.

A second photo shows a control panel for the thermostat, lights, and cooling box. This is the only glimpse at the cabin in these teasers.

The Multivan is available with an eHybrid PHEV powertrain. It uses a 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder and electric motor making a total of 215 horsepower (160 kilowatts). The 10.4-kilowatt-hour battery provides up to 30 miles of electric range. However, it’s not clear whether this is the powertrain the new California would use.

“We want to expand the range around the business with our camping models – and thus offer our customers that special California feeling. These include digital services for the Cali Community, completely new services to complement the purchase of a vehicle… but also the show car presentation of the new California based on the Multivan,” VW Commercial Vehicles CEO Carsten Intra said during the division’s annual press conference in March.

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VW also plans to build a California variant of the ID. Buzz. The electric camper is supposed to arrive in 2025. No official details are available yet, but we’d expect it to have popular motorhome features like a sleeping area and a small kitchen. Aftermarket companies in Europe are working on offerings like this, too.

The ID. Buzz will arrive in the United States in 2024. The version in the US has a longer wheelbase than the standard version available in Europe. The passenger version has room for up to seven people, but five- and six-occupant variants are also coming.

Two batteries are available: one with 82 kilowatt hours (77 kWh usable) and another with 91 kWh (85 kWh usable). The standard powertrain makes 282 horsepower and 413 pound-feet, and the GTX grade adds all-wheel drive and 335 hp.

The California name for the motorhome version of the VW Transporter premiered at the Caravan Salon 35 years ago. Since then, VW Commercial Vehicles has made over 260,000 of them. There have been four generations since then.

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