Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles presents the extended California family at the 60th Caravan Salon

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles presents the extended California family at the 60th Caravan Salon

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles (VWCV) is showing its diverse range of camper vans at the world’s biggest trade fair for motorhomes and caravans in Düsseldorf. After a break last year due to coronavirus, the Hannover-based company is making a splash this year with an appreciably bigger stand on which visitors will be able to experience a total of seven ‘ex-works camper vans’. A newcomer among them is the youngest offspring of the VWCV camper van family: the compact yet versatile Caddy California is celebrating its trade show première in Düsseldorf.

On a stand appreciably bigger than in previous years (stand D52 in hall 16), Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is presenting its diverse world of camper vans. This, however, includes not only vehicles, but also the free ‘California Tour’ app for smart phones. All camper vans model ranges in various versions are on show on the stand. Be it for everyday use, camping, adventure trips or van life, VWCV has the right vehicle on offer for all travel needs.

The model ranges at a glance:

Caddy California (from 30,339.05 EUR1).

The Caddy California is the successor to the company’s micro camper (available since way back in 2005), the Caddy Tramper / later the Caddy Beach.
The newest member of the California family comes ‘ex-works’ with camping fixtures and compact dimensions (length 4.5 m or as the Maxi 4.85 m). Yet, thanks to disk springs under the comfortable mattress, the ‘Tiddler’ provides the same sleeping comfort as the ‘big’ California. With its optional panoramic glass roof it also offers a unique opportunity: gazing up at the stars from your bed! As well as being compact, the Caddy California is also very flexible: if the bed is not needed, it can easily be taken out, thus turning the camper into a van. Available as an option, a pull-out mini kitchen can even be added in the back of the vehicle, at which you can conjure up ‘one-pot’ meals under the cover of the tailgate. The vehicle impresses with many clever ideas for perfectly utilising the space it provides and thus naturally also has the appropriate camping furniture on board that is so typical of the California.

Beach life with the California Ocean

California 6.1 (from 52,342.15 EUR1)

No other camper van represents the feeling of freedom and adventure like the California with its characteristic pop-up roof. The icon of all camper vans – the Bulli-based California – comes in four specifications:  Beach Tour, Beach Camper, Coast and Ocean. All four models are additionally available as an exclusive ‘Edition’ version.
For every possible use in the camper van segment there is thus a vehicle to match – be it a Beach Tour with up to seven seats or an exclusively equipped California Ocean. All versions of the California 6.1 offer perfectly stowed camping furniture plus two sleeping areas: down below on the fold-out rear bench seat (complete with bed extension) and up top under the practical pop-up roof. The legendary Bulli driving feel and a vehicle height of 1.99 metres make it fit for everyday use.

Grand California (from 61,856.20 EUR1)

With its own bathroom and shower on board, this fully-fledged motorhome based on the Crafter offers great independence and flexibility on your travels. The Grand California is available as the ‘600’ (length approx. 6 metres), with a transversely fitted bed in the rear and an optional child’s bed under the high roof, and as the ‘680’ (length approx. 6.8 metres), with a big lengthways bed in the rear. Both variants have a practical row of kitchen units including a 2-hob gas cooker and compressor fridge, which can be opened both from the inside and outside. Cold drinks or refreshing ice cream from the freezer compartment are thus always to hand. To avoid running out of power, a solar panel on the roof can ensure a ‘top-up’. A central control panel provides information on the vehicle’s power management and water tank level, and facilitates the control of many technical functions. It is all extremely easy and has already won the ‘Connected Car Award2’ on multiple occasions..

The Grand California is available as the ‘600’ (left) and ‘680’ (right)

All-wheel drive

The Volkswagen campers and vans have been available with all-wheel drive since way back in 1985. This tradition has not changed to this day. All three models – Caddy, T6.1 and Crafter – can, for example, be ordered ex-works with 4Motion all-wheel drive and thus offer even more freedom wherever you choose to go. For the journey is about getting there – and the best place to stop for the night is often off the beaten track.

Sales and production

Sales of the California models once again showed a clear year-on-year increase. Orders taken for the California 6.1 were, for example, 34,5 % up on last year’s level.

VWCV has since 2004 been making the iconic Bulli-based camper van in a dedicated California production facility in the Limmer district of Hannover. To date over 154,000 California vehicles have left the production hall and are in use all over the world. Since the introduction of the VW California based on the T3 (1988), over 217,000 California campers have thus already been produced based on the van.

In order to reduce delivery lead times for the Grand California, the production facility’s capacity has been increased. Some variants can now still be delivered even before the end of the year.

The Caddy California is available in two lengths: 4.5m and 4.85 m (Maxi).

California on Tour app

The app is the ideal digital companion for any camping road trip.
Using the app, you can quickly and easily find a suitable camp site and pitch or a filling station along your planned route. With the aid of a clearly laid-out category search feature, the app provides important information on the next stops of your journey.

The app also provides lots of technical information on all aspects of the California and access to the vehicle’s digital user manual. Users are in this way able to call up the information they want in a quick and uncomplicated manner. Travelling with the California thus becomes even more relaxed.

Legal wild camping’ in the Hotel VW California

With ‘Hotel VW California’, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles (VWCV) and hinterland camp GmbH are enabling owners of California and other VW camper vans to overnight on an exclusive basis on unique pitches in the hinterland. For anyone who does not yet own a California it is still possible to win a road trip with one of three VW campers and to take part in the promotion. Over the course of the year, the ‘once in a lifetime’ spots will be really spectacular.

The Grand California provides its passengers with a spacious interior flooded with light.

California Professional Partners

Among the 400-strong VWCV dealer network in Germany there have been 85 specialist partners since the start of this year. At the California Professional Partners (CPP) a special emphasis is placed on sales and service for the whole California family.

Camper van superstructure manufacturers

There has been a long tradition at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles of camper vans from manufacturers who develop their bespoke vehicle concepts on Caddy, Crafter or T6.1 models and are thus the perfect complement to the camper van portfolio ex works.

At the Caravan Salon over 20 companies are showing their camper vans based on VWCV vehicles in halls 12 to 16.

The Caravan Salon takes place from 28 August to 5 September in Düsseldorf. Tickets must be bought in advance online.

1 Prices incl. 19% VAT
2 The Connected Car Award (CCA) – a reader poll initiated by magazines AUTO BILD and COMPUTER BILD – is regarded as the trend barometer of the digitalised automotive world. The Grand California won the CCA in 2018 and 2020. The California 6.1 won the award in 2019.


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