The Volkswagen Transporter T5 is the fifth generation of Volkswagen’s light commercial vehicle’s. The Transporter is very a versatile workhorse that is available in over 100 different variations and configurations. It can be configured as a van or or as a truck in a single cab, double cab, or chassis truck.
The most common consumer version of the Volkswagen Transporter T5 is the Sportline. The standard engine is a 172 horsepower TDI diesel engine pumping out 295 foot-pounds of torque mated with a six speed manual transmission. The Sportline includes 18 inch alloy rims and has been lowered just over an inch versus standard variants of the Transporter. Jeremy Clarkson of “Top Gear” deemed the Sportline the “fastest van in Britain” based on a series of competitions using different vans on the show.
Volkswagen also offers the Transporter in a version called the California Beach and the California which are both in house designs by VW that are a motorhome version of the T5.
Mechanical amenities of the T5 line now include hill start assist, a dual clutch transmission and VW’s Four Motion four wheel drive system. Interior luxuries include Side Lane Assist, a system used for notifying you of vehicles in your blind spot when changing lanes, a tire pressure monitoring system, Dynaudio sound system, as well as touch screen navigation and a backup camera.
As of 2009 all engines are a straight four cylinder and all are only available in a 2.0 liter. Options include one gas engine, and four different diesel powered engines. The diesels are all Turbocharged Direct Injection (or TDI) and use common rail injection. Volkswagen claims the new range of engines available in the Transporter line are 20% more efficient than the previous line they replace.
Reviewers boast of good fuel economy and handling. Some saying that the T5 handles much more like a car than a van. Being built in Germany you can rest assured it is of a good build quality and easily holds its resale value. So far there are no plans to produce a T6 to replace the current version, so expect more editions of the T5 to come out.