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Volkswagen Multivan ehybrid (2022) – Drive test and video

October 3, 2022

Volkswagen’s Multivan is a luxury passenger version of the Transporter van. With six or seven seats, the rear five of which are removable. With a sliding console in between with numerous storage compartments and a fold-out table. Flip over the middle row of seats and you have a homey seat.

Multivan: you can do anything with that

In short, it is the recipe of the Volkswagen Multivan. A bus that allows you to go in all directions. In a nutshell, then, the Multivan is a Multi Purpose Vehicle (MPV), which were immensely popular in the 1980s and 1990s. Its founder was the first generation Renault Espace, which also had swivel and removable seats. Indeed: exactly like the Multivan.

Almost a victim of BPM

The Multivan did get a bit expensive in recent years. The purchase price rose to 100,000 euros especially in our country. The high CO2 emissions and diesel drive screwed up the tax levy BPM significantly, by tens of thousands of euros. However, the new Multivan (2022) lavishes considerably less on state coffers. 1,411 euros is the BPM payment only. So you now drive a Multivan from just under 50,000 euros, including all taxes.

Plug offered solace

The lower price is due to a hybrid powertrain including a rechargeable battery. So Volkswagen equipped its Multivan with a plug. It is a plug-in hybrid, which with full battery can travel up to 49 km purely electric. In practice it is less so, we discover. Count on something like 40 km, but still.

Automatic as standard

The hybrid powertrain includes a 1.4 TSi gasoline engine and an electric motor mounted between the DSG automatic transmission (standard) and internal combustion engine. Together they account for 160 kW (218 hp) of power. The eager response to the gas is striking. The electric motor provides benefits especially when pulling away. With its then high torque, the Multivan gets off the road smoothly. The internal combustion engine starts assisting at about 20 mph.

Electric and hybrid driving

With a full battery, the Multivan preferably drives purely electric. You can change that by setting the driving mode to hybrid. When the battery is empty, it is in this position anyway. Electric driving is meant for city and lower-speed driving. When the throttle is released, the car brakes on the electric motor, recovering power.

Gas off, engine off

Hybrid is preferable for highway and longer distances. Depending on conditions, the electronic brain then chooses pure electric, rolling on with the combustion engine off at highway throttle, or driving with combustion engine and electric assistance. Quite a mouthful, but consumption then really picks up.

Multivan and consumption, wow!

We recorded an average of 6.0 to 7.1 liters per 100 km with five occupants on board and luggage. You might call that economical for a seven-seater, with this weight and cargo volume. Because even when the battery is dead, the electric motor continues to support in the background to keep consumption low.

Rocker switch for transmission

You control the transmission with a rocker switch on the dashboard. Plugging the ignition key in somewhere, you don’t have to. You keep that in your pocket and with the push of the start button, the Multivan comes to life.

Sitting in any place fine

For a bus, ride comfort is exemplary. Frankly, we don’t know many “vans” that are so well sprung and so quiet. In any case, you soon end up with specimens priced much higher. The seats are fine and that really applies to every seat. Long distances are easily sustained on these.

Chair dance in the Multivan

Removing the seats is easy. They are still a bit heavy, although Volkswagen does claim a 25% lower weight compared to that with the previous generation (diesel) Multivan. Now they weigh between 23 and 29 kg. The seat backs fold down individually. The front seats and the outer middle row seats have armrests.

Lots of standard, even more options

The Energetic version in this test comes with the necessary extras. The price may go toward 60 grand, but then you have something. With, for example, a Harman Kardon sound system, electrically operated sliding doors and tailgate, heated windshield, heated front seats, extensive infotainment, digital cockpit, rear climate control that can be regulated separately, velour upholstery, cameras all around, glass panoramic roof, electric front seat adjustment and much more… Sure, it’s not all there in the base version, but the list of options is truly endless: multi so!

Driving aids?

The Volkswagen Multivan also helps you drive. Adaptive cruise control adjusts speed to suit vehicles ahead, brakes to a stop if necessary and pulls up again independently. Lane assist helps you keep the bus between the lines. The steering corrections are slightly limping if you don’t. If you threaten to hit a pole while parking that you did not see despite sensors and cameras, the car itself intervenes by braking hard. It scares you!


The Volkswagen Multivan one is truly an all-rounder. Passenger bus, van, VIP bus and vacation bus. And if you want to move the furniture in your house every week, this is your car too. Moving chairs, out or in a different place: you invent it and it can be done.

The Multivan, especially in two colors, like this combination of orange below and metallic gray above, is also really a fun and friendly-looking bus that awakens vacation spirit in you. You really want to get out and about with friends, family or colleagues. In every seat, comfort is fine and head and leg room is excellent.

With the low BPM, the purchase price is manageable and the powertrain keeps consumption on the favorable side. Nevertheless, it is a big car if you often travel alone or in pairs. Its high weight also does not really favor road tax, and its size means that not all parking spaces are suitable.

The Multivan is an option for large families, but above all for corporate use as a luxury cab for VIP transportation. Then it is used optimally for its intended purpose. Still, it is a car that you secretly start dreaming of as an individual. Because oh my, what a joy to drive and easy when visiting the Ikea, the Multivan is.