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The Volkswagen Abt eTransporter LWB – The Reviews

by | Mar 23, 2021 | All Articles, Electric Vehicles, Reviews, Vans | 0 comments

If you have been finding stock this month tough to come by, we might have the answer. With reported issues in meeting demand due to the issues in the supply chain of components, finding vans – let alone great deals on vans has been hard to come by.

One of the vans that has gotten around these issues though and that we have seen plenty of great deals for is the all-electric Volkswagen Abt E-transport LWB. But is it any good?

About The Van

What’s it all about?

The VW e-Transporter is an electric version of VW’s classic mid-range, LWB van. Coming from VW then you can be assured of high-quality build and guaranteed quality driving experience – especially on urban streets, where the smooth ride makes light work of all the pot-holes!

Inside the Cab

The e-Transporter is one of the smartest interiors of the vans in this category – delivering both supreme comfort and style.

The van comes either as the e-Transporter or the 5 or 6 seat e-Transporter Kombi. The interior is also extremely functional – with plenty of storage options and cup-holders.

There is a choice of two different-sized infotainment screens. It also comes with a wireless charging option and is compatible with Apple AirPlay / Android Auto.

Other Equipment

The equipment and controls is pretty conventional and what you’d expect – but it’s well packaged and presented – which makes it even more re-assuring. It comes with;

  • 16-inch wheels
  • Air-conditioning
  • Heat-insulating cabin glass
  • Heated front seats
  • Driver’s seat with height-adjustment, four-way lumber support and arm rest
  • Dual passenger bench seat
  • Rubber flooring in the cabin
  • Electric windows
  • Electric, heated door mirrors
  • Multi-function steering wheel, leather trimmed
  • LED interior lighting
  • Lockable, illuminated glovebox
  • Single 12v socket
  • 6.5-inch touchscreen infotainment system with DAB radio, Bluetooth and USB C connectivity
  • Multi-function ‘premium’ instrument cluster display
  • Volkswagen App-Connect compatible
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Remote central locking

Using the Van

The range

Being electric, the range of a van is important. VW quotes a WLTP range of 82 miles. However, the range of any electric vehicle is always subject to driving style and weather conditions.

Now that might not sound a lot, but with the vehicle coming with a limiter of 56mph, this helps the battery charge.

However, if the majority of your driving is localised to 20 miles radius and on local roads, then the range is going to be more than adequate on a day-to-day basis.

Charging

Charging the e-Transporter to an 80 per cent charge from flat can take around 45 minutes, while charging from a 7.2kW wall-box full charges the battery in around five and a half hours.

If you are planning on making longer journeys on a regular basis then with it’s range, it’s probably not the best choice. If however you are concentrating your driving locally, you won’t be spending chunks of your working day charging the thing as we’ve already said, the range will be more than adequate.

Load

Because of the weight of the batteries, the payload is reduced to a maximum of 996kg – however this often meets most needs.

VW interior and doors

Also, on the plus-side, the e-Transporter has been homologated to tow up to 1500kg – which is unusual for an electric van as many aren’t rated to tow at all. 

The other great thing is the battery packs are tucked away underneath the van. This means it doesn’t impact on the load space and you get the same as you would in a diesel version.

 

AutoExpress scores the e-Transporter 4 out of 5 for it’s Energy Use and Running Costs and it’s Driving and Performance.

It then gives the van 4.5 out of 5 for it’s load space and practicality as well as it’s reliability and safety whilst it’s cab and interior scores a 5 out of 5.

It then gives an overall score of a rather stingy 3 out of 5 – citing the reasons for scoring it down as its cost and its low range.

However, as we’ve discussed, if you a looking to use a van locally, the range is irrelevant. And with so many issues with supply, the deals available on these vans at the moment make the cost much more palatable – it’s probably the best time to get one.

The Parker’s Guide gives the e-Transporter a 4.0 out of 5 rating.

It too cites the main plus points being the interior, the drive quality, it being cheap to run and it’s towing load as mentioned previously.

On the downside again it cites purchase price, range and the speed limiter.

Again though, for local use on local roads and the odd sprint up a couple of motorway junctions, the range and speed limiter isn’t an issue.

Parker’s Guide sums up that due to the sheer quality of the interior and the drive – the e-Transporter is worth considering over the Mercedes eVito.

WhatCar gives the e-Transporter a 3 out of 5 rating.

WhatCar does list the vehicle’s range (or lack of) as a negative. However, as we’ve already said, if you are only making short, local journeys each day, this isn’t really an issue. So if this is your business, then the plus points in the WhatCar review are much more important. 

In the rest of the review it scores the VW eTransporter Abt with 4/5 for it’s drive, low running costs and safety features. 

It does score 3 out of 5 for it’s payload being 996kg. It doesn’t however, mention the towing capability of the van – which on this van is a big plus point.

In summing up, WhatCar says “Volkswagen’s partnership with ABT to make the e-Transporter is a quick fix to get an electric van on the market to rival competitors. It could be improved with more size options, bigger batteries and a greater range, but overall it is a smart, safe and comfortable attempt at an electric van.

Summary

If you are looking to switch to an electric van that;

·         you can use locally,

·         rely on for a save, smooth and comfortable drive,

·         come with the payload space of a diesel van, and

·         that is cheap as chips to run,

then the deals currently available on the VW Abt eTransporter LWB are worth checking out. 

The other thing to consider is how cheap it will be to run on a day-to-day basis. It is compliant with the new Clean Air Zones and zero tax. It also comes with the rapid charge option to get to 80% – making it ideal for local use.

When you consider all these factors, the VW Transport is a great van with 70 years’ heritage – and the electric version is a great starting point for your electric van journey.

If you would like to get a quote for some of the deals out there, drop us a line and one of our experts will contact you. 

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