Now in its 71st year of production, the Volkswagen Transporter range has had a refresh dubbed the ‘T6.1’. On sale in showrooms now, the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 range is more of an update than an all-new model that brings fresh styling, more technology, active safety features and a new infotainment system to an already popular van. Rivals to the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 Transporter range include the Ford Transit Custom, Peugeot Expert, Mercedes-Benz Vito, Renault Trafic, Mitsubishi Express, Toyota Hiace/Granvia and the the Hyundai iLoad.
There are around 49 different configurations of the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 van, some of which include the Transporter Van, Crew-van, Single cab, dual-cab, Multivan, Caravelle and range-topping California Beach. Each van benefits from the same upgrades over the previous model including new engines, and more contemporary safety systems.
Price & Specs:
Starting the range off is the basic 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 Transporter short wheelbase which measures in at 1,978mm tall, 1,904mm wide, 4,904mm long and with a wheelbase of 3,000mm. More importantly the SWB’s load length is 2,572mm, height of 1,410mm and width of 1,700mm (1,244mm in between the wheel arches). The Short wheel base 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 Transporter TDI250 manual has a maximum payload of 951kg and a braked towing capacity of 2,500kg.
Opting for the long wheelbase variant increases the overall length to 5,304mm, while maintaining the same width and height as the SWB van. The maximum load length is 2,975mm while the load width remains at 1,700mm with 1,244mm within the wheel arches.
Standard to all 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 models are automatic headlights, rain sensing wipers, 16-inch wheels, a full size spare wheel, a leather wrapped steering wheel, LED cabin lighting, lumbar support for the driver’s seat, cruise control with a speed limiter and a 6.5-inch ‘Composition Colour’ touchscreen audio system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and two USB-C ports.
Safety tech has also benefited from a major upgrade in the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 – the entire range comes with auto emergency braking (AEB), blind-spot monitoring (BSM) with rear cross-traffic alert, driver fatigue monitoring and rear parking sensors with a reversing camera (the cab-chassis misses out on this due to its steel tray). If you choose a Caravelle or Multivan, you also get front parking sensors, an electric differential lock and an electric rear childproof lock as standard.
A range of options are available to the T6.1 vans with the most notable being $1,300 metallic paint, $910 upgraded suspension and a 20mm height raise, $1,990 LED headlights, $3,600 electric sliding doors, a $610 front bench seat, and a $900 digital cockpit. Optional safety kit includes $1,290 lane assist, $260 auto high beam and $690 adaptive cruise control.
See below the full range pricing (plus on-road costs):
Transporter SWB Van
- Transporter Van SWB TDI250 5MT: $38,990
- Transporter Van SWB TDI340 6MT: $41,990
- Transporter Van SWB TDI340 7DSG: $44,990
- Transporter Van SWB TDI340 7DSG 4Motion: $47,990
- Transporter Van SWB TDI450 7DSG: $50,990
- Transporter Van SWB TDI450 7DSG 4Motion: $53,990
Transporter LWB Van
- Transporter Van LWB TDI340 6MT: $44,990
- Transporter Van LWB TDI340 7DSG: $47,990
- Transporter Van LWB TDI340 7DSG 4Motion: $50,990
- Transporter Van LWB TDI450 7DSG: $53,990
- Transporter Van LWB TDI450 7DSG 4Motion: $56,990
Transporter Crewvan (seating for five, with load space behind)
- Transporter Crewvan SWB TDI340 7DSG: $51,490
- Transporter Crewvan SWB TDI340 7DSG 4Motion: $54,490
- Transporter Crewvan LWB TDI340 7DSG: $54,490
- Transporter Crewvan LWB TDI340 7DSG 4Motion: $57,490
Transporter Chassis with factory tray
- Transporter Single Cab with tray LWB TDI450 7DSG: $55,490
- Transporter Single Cab with tray LWB TDI450 7DSG 4Motion: $58,490
- Transporter Dual Cab with tray LWB TDI450 7DSG: $57,490
- Transporter Dual Cab with tray LWB TDI450 7-speed DSG 4Motion: $60,490
- Caravelle TDI430 LWB 7DSG: $58,990
- Multivan Comfortline Premium TDI340 7DSG: $61,990
- Multivan Comfortline Premium TDI340 7DSG 4Motion: $64,990
- Multivan Comfortline Premium TDI340 7DSG: $64,990
- Multivan Comfortline Premium TDI340 7DSG 4Motion: $67,990
- Multivan Highline TDI450 7DSG: $84,990
- Multivan Highline TDI450 7DSG 4Motion: $87,990
- Multivan Comfortline Exec LWB TDI450 7DSG: $87,900
- Multivan Cruise Edition TDI340 7DSG: $73,990
California Beach (camper van with pop-top roof)
- California Beach TDI340 7DSG: $82,990
- California Beach TDI340 7DSG 4Motion: $86,990
- California Beach TDI450 7DSG 4Motion: $92,990
Performance & Economy:
Three engines are available with the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 range, all different tunes of a 2.0-litre turbo diesel engine: the base TDI250 produces 81kW of power and 250Nm of torque and although these numbers seem low behind the wheel they feel more than adequate. The engine feels torquey down low but isn’t afraid to rev and get up to speed quickly if need be. The five-speed manual was a little notchy but overall an enjoyable experience and one that would be easy to live with day to day. The average fuel consumption for the TDI250 is 6.9L/100km which seems achievable based on the short drives at the media launch event.
Next up is the TDI340, which comes with 110kW of power and 340Nm of torque – it sends its power through the front wheels or optionally through all four wheels. A six-speed manual or a seven-speed dual-cluth auto are the transmission options. We drove the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 Multivan TDI340 Comfortline at the launch, on our drives the TDI340 engine felt enjoyable to drive with most of the torque being down low and the DSG transmission shifting to keep you in the torque band.
The top-spec 146kW/450Nm TDI450 is only available with the seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission and has some of the healthiest outputs in the segment. This is more than adequate for a van of this size and propels the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 van range down the road with more than enough go.
Ride & Handling:
On the standard suburban roads we drove the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 range it felt composed and unlike a lot of vans on the market, remarkably like a car. There was a little body roll, which is typical for any vehicle of this size, but overall it is impressive behind the wheel. Very Volkswagen-y.
The addition of the electromechanical steering has benefited the driving ability of the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 range as it is effortless to do U-turns or just to use in a daily setting. This addition has also made it possible for a lot of the active safety features to become available in the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 range.
Interior & Practicality:
The interior of any van is pivotal to its success as people who drive them will be using them essentially as a mobile office. The 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 range’s cabin is quite spacious and a very comfortable space to be in for long periods of time. The lumbar support on the driver’s seat means you wont get a sore back after long journeys and the fatigue detection system means you won’t drift off while behind the wheel.
Storage is plentiful in the T6.1’s cabin – there are more than enough cubbies to store anything you could ever need and in the back of the Transporter vans there is six tie down points making it easier to secure the load.
For the first time in the Transporter and Multivan, there is a grab handle making ingress and egress easier than ever. Visibility in the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 is fantastic with the A-pillars being not as thick as many other vans of this size and the large side mirrors help visibility too.
The new 6.5-inch infotainment system is easy to use and the colours are quite bright – the only gripe we had with it is that the rear view camera could be a little wider and better quality.
Running Costs & Warranty:
The 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 range gets the brand’s five-year/unlimited kilometre warranty and 12-months of roadside assistance. This is on par with what rivals offer except for the Mitsubishi Express, which offers a 10-year, 100,000km warranty.
Servicing the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 range occurs once annually or every 15,000km, with the cost of servicing the T6.1 over five years coming to $2,624. There is a pre-paid five-year service plan that you can buy at the time of purchase for $1,980, which is a $644 saving upfront.
2021 Volkswagen T6.1 Range DiscoverAuto Rating: 8.0/10
With a flooded market of vans available to consumers in 2021, the Volkswagen T6.1 range offers a fresh, modern alternative with active safety features not offered with a lot of other vans.
A range of fuel efficient, powerful diesel engines and a good warranty backing it, the 2021 Volkswagen T6.1 range is sure to be a hit with commercial buyers. It is a comfortable and usable van with all the convenience features any buyer could wish for.