VW serves up al­ter­na­tives to utes

New Zealand Logger - - Forest Talk -

FORESTERS WHO RE­QUIRE A VE­HI­CLE THAT CAN CARRY MORE pas­sen­gers and pay­load than a tra­di­tional ute are be­ing tar­geted by Volk­swa­gen New Zealand.

In ad­di­tion to the Amarok ute, which is al­ready selling into forestry crews and for­est man­agers, the com­pany is now bring­ing in pick-up ver­sions of the T6 Trans­porter van and will shortly launch the all-new Crafter van as pick-up here, too – both of­fered with the 4Mo­tion four­wheel-drive sys­tem.

A taste of what to ex­pect was dis­played at the re­cent Har­vestTECH 2017 con­fer­ence in Ro­torua, where VW showed off a dou­ble-cab Trans­porter with a drop-side pick-up tray.

John Frear, head of com­mer­cial ve­hi­cles for Volk­swa­gen New Zealand, says this model is just one of many op­tions that con­trac­tors could con­sider for their forestry op­er­a­tions.

“We al­ready have the pas­sen­ger vari­ant of the Trans­porter, which Gis­borne con­trac­tor RAD Log­ging has pur­chased be­cause of the safety of­fered by 4Mo­tion, and we think there is merit in the pick-ups with the same four-wheel-drive sys­tem as well,” says Mr Frear.

Avail­able in sin­gle cab with a 2.9-me­tre long tray or a dou­ble cab model with a 2.2-me­tre long tray with the long wheel­base, the Trans­porter pick-up of­fers greater pay­load ca­pac­ity (in ex­cess of 1.35-tonne) and the abil­ity to carry up to six peo­ple (three on the front bench seat in both mod­els and three in back for the dou­ble cab). There’s also a short wheel­base vari­ant in both sin­gle and dou­ble cab that pro­vides a tray with sim­i­lar ca­pac­ity to a ute.

The Trans­porter is pow­ered by Euro 5 ver­sions of the VW com­mon rail 2.0-litre diesel en­gine with a choice of 103kW or 150kW power out­puts (torque is 340Nm and 450Nm re­spec­tively). Buy­ers also get a choice of 6-speed man­ual, or 7-speed DSG au­to­matic trans­mis­sions.

Mr Frear says that a pas­sen­ger van ver­sion could trans­port up to ten peo­ple, whilst a pure van op­tion would suit as a ser­vice/de­liv­ery van.

The forth­com­ing VW Crafter, due to ar­rive in the fourth quar­ter of this year, is a larger ve­hi­cle for those who want to carry even more pas­sen­gers and equip­ment.

It, too, can be pur­chased as a ser­vice/de­liv­ery van, or fit­ted with seats to trans­port crew to and from the for­est. Three roof heights and three wheel­base lengths are of­fered, as well as front-drive, rear-drive and the four-wheel-drive 4Mo­tion.

The pick-up model can also be or­dered as a sin­gle or dual cab, with longer drop­side trays than those in the Trans­porter (4.3-me­tre length for the sin­gle cab and 3.5-me­tres for the dou­ble cab) and pay­load weight goes up to 1,800kg.

There’s also more seat­ing if you se­lect the dou­ble cab pick-up, since the rear seat can ac­com­mo­date four pas­sen­gers, which takes the to­tal num­ber of seats avail­able to seven. For those who want a pas­sen­ger van, the Crafter can seat up to 15 peo­ple, de­pend­ing on the vari­ant.

The en­gine and trans­mis­sion op­tions are 103kW/340Nm or 130kW/410Nm, but the Crafter does have the ad­van­tage of pro­vid­ing a 3.5-tonne tow­ing ca­pac­ity with the 4Mo­tion sys­tem.

A neat op­tion avail­able on the Crafter is an au­to­mated Trailer As­sist ma­noeu­vring sys­tem.

NZL

The VW Trans­porter is one of two al­ter­na­tive pick-up op­tions now of­fered in New Zealand.

The all-new VW Crafter ar­rives here later in the year.

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