Caddy tops NZ city van segment
VOLKSWAGEN’S NIFTY CADDY IS THE UNDISPUTED KING OF the city vans in New Zealand. When the all-new fourth-generation Caddy arrived in 2016, Volkswagen NZ dropped the TDI diesel engine from the range, and offered an all-petrol line-up.
For 2017, the NZ Caddy line-up consists of four models, the entry-level short-wheelbase Caddy Runner TSI, the bigger-engined Caddy Van, also on a short wheelbase and the long-wheelbase Maxi Van and Crewvan.
The Caddy Runner has a 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol motor driving the front wheels through a manual six-speed gearbox. The engine develops 62kw of maximum power and peak torque of 160Nm between 1500 and 3500rpm.
VW quotes combined cycle fuel consumption of 5.5 litres/100km.
The other models all use a 1.4-litre turbocharged four-cylinder developing 92kw of maximum power and 220Nm of peak torque that’s available between 1500 and 3500rpm.
All three 1.4-litre models are available with a choice of six-speed manual or seven-speed DSG automatic transmission.
Quoted fuel use for the Caddy Van is 5.8 litres/100km (manual) and 5.5 litres for the DSG.
VW says the Maxi Van is capable of 5.9 litres and 5.5 litres per 100km.
We haven’t driven the 1.2-litre Caddy Runner, but the 1.4-litre SWB Caddy Van we tested during 2016 provided brisk performance (VW quotes a 0-100km/h acceleration time of 10.3 seconds), and its overall responses were car-like.
The latter is not surprising as the van is basically a car in commercial vehicle trim, and is built on the same MQB platform as the latest Volkswagen Golf hatchback.
The Maxi’s load compartment length is 2249mm and height and width height and width are 1556mm and 1532mm respectively.
The Caddy Maxi’s load space is 4.2 cubic metres, and the payload is 832kg. An optional maximum payload kit lifts the Maxi’s payload to 1075kg.
Six load tie-down eyes are provided on the floor of SWB models, and the Caddy Maxi gets eight.
A side-loading sliding door on the left-hand side is standard on SWB Caddys, and the Maxi comes with dual sliding side doors. A second sliding door is available as an added-cost option on the SWB models.
A neat overhead storage area in the passenger compartment provides a handy out-of-the-way place to stow bits and pieces, and there are storage compartments under the front seats.
Climate-control air-conditioning, height-adjustable driver’s seat, power windows, electrically-adjustable, heated door mirrors and a leather-wrapped multi-function steering wheel are standard fare, but cruise-control is an added-cost option.
Caddys have front seat airbags, and driver and front seat passenger side curtain airbags are an added cost option.
Standard safety features include a Front Assist Surrounding monitoring system, and City Emergency Braking which applies the brakes automatically if a collision is imminent when travelling at speeds of up to 30km/h.
It also has a multi-collision braking system which, in a crash, automatically takes control of the braking function if the driver can’t.
There is also a Rest Assist feature, advising the driver to take a break if it’s detected he or she is becoming drowsy, and there’s hill hold assist on DSG models and rear parking aid with a reversing camera, a first in this segment.
Caddy pricing starts at $29,990 for the SWB Runner; SWB 1.4-litre Caddy Vans are $33,990 and $37,490 for the DSG auto, with Maxi models listing at $37,990 and $41,490 for manual and auto models.