With optional all-wheel drive, this motorhome is ready to take the family anywhere.
Now, Europeans can call a Volkswagen home because the brand is taking an even bigger step into the camper market with the launch of the nearly 20-foot-long (6-meter-long) Grand California. Based on the Crafter, this motorhome is a step up from the standard, Transporter-based California by having space for an onboard bathroom, including a shower.
Compared to the standard Crafter, the Grand California gains a higher, camper roof that includes skylights in the rear living area over the double bed, and in the bathroom. VW shaped it to mitigate the taller design’s negative effect on fuel consumption. Buyers can also spec optional extras to the exterior, like a roof-mounted air conditioner, extending awning, solar panel, and bicycle rack.
Living That Van Life:
Inside, the Grand California looks like a very comfy place to take a journey. The company specifically uses white finishes to keep the cabin bright and appear more spacious. The windows on the back and side pop open, in addition to featuring blinds and screens to keep bugs out. The doors feature deployable mosquito nets, too.
The interior comes standard with a double bed, but there’s an optional roof-mounted sleeping area for kids (pictured below). When it’s time to eat, the gas stove has two cooktops, and there’s a 2.5-cubic-foot (70-liter) refrigerator. The dining table has room for four. If you want to shower au naturel in the wilderness, the shower has an external connection, including temperature controls. For entertainment, an optional Bluetooth system functions separately from the vehicle’s infotainment, so folks in the back can listen to their own music.
VW doesn’t offer any powertrain details, other than that the Grand California is available with optional all-wheel drive. It likely shares the Crafter’s 2.0-liter turbodiesel four-cylinder that’s available in multiple tunes between 108 horsepower (80 kilowatts) to 161 hp (120 kW). For easier driving, the van is available with a suite of assistance systems, including city emergency braking, lane assist, blind spot monitoring, rear traffic alert, park assist, and adaptive cruise control.
Deliveries of the Grand California will start in early 2019, and VW will announce pricing details soon. Unfortunately, the lack of a presence of VW Commercial Vehicles in the United States will mean that you won’t see a Grand California in the state of California.