The Volkswagen California is based on the T5 Multivan by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles (VWCV). It is the first campervan designed and built in-house by VWCV Special Business Unit, a subsidiary of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.
The "California" is not sold in North America, although demand is high. The name "California" was previously used by Volkswagen for the Westfalia-built campervans since 1988. Westfalia was the Official Manufacturer of motorhomes for VW. When the Westfalia company was bought by DaimlerChrysler in 2001, VW decided to build and design their own campervan range, based on the legendary Transporter range.
The California launched in August, 2003. In 2004 two design studies were presented at the Caravan Salon in Düsseldorf: California Beach and California Tramper. VWCV expanded the range in 2005 with the California (Multivan/Kombi) Beach, to bridge the gap between the Multivan/Kombi people carriers and the California.
At the 2007 Caravan Salon in Düsseldorf, VWCV launched the new California Beach with pop top bed, as seen in the higher specified versions of the California range.
VW California (Multivan/Kombi) Beach specs & features
- ABS brakes
- Acceleration Slip Regulator (ASR) - a traction control system
- cruise control
- air conditioning
- power front windows
- heated doors and mirrors
- remote central locking
- CD player with 6 speakers
- alloy wheels with full size spares
- dimmable dashboard illumination
- storage nets
The "Good Night Package" comes with curtains, and the ability to fold the seats into a bed for two.
A folding table integrated within the sliding door is able to be used outside and inside with two folding chairs.
Combined with the rear seats, the front seats swivel 180 degrees, so you can have a meeting/meal/break with the rear seat passengers.
California Beach now has the option of the elevating "pop top" aluminium roof, with bed space of 120x200cm in Germany.
VW California specs & features
From 2010 a new version of the VW T5 California - commonly known as the 'facelift' model - was launched and replaced the older, pre-2010, version. Notable changes to the later models include a re-styled grille as well as re-designed headlamps and wing mirrors. The 130ps and 174ps 2.5 litre engines were replaced with 140ps turbo and 180ps bi-turbo 2.0 litre engines.
The California comes with an electro-hydraulically elevating aluminium roof with bed space of 120x200cm.
The rear seating in the California can be arranged to make lower level double bed measuring 200x114cm.
The kitchen comprises a sink, a two burner gas cooktop powered by a 2.8 kg gas cylinder, a 42 litre compressor fridge, two kitchen storage cupboards with drawers integrated in the design are also standard.
A standard fitment twin water tanks both hold 30 litres of water, one for drinking water, the other for foul/waste water.
- satellite navigation system
- 3 Zone Climatic airconditioner
- alcantara and leather upholstery
- 6 disc CD changer
- single seat for living area
- parking sensors for front and rear
- rain sensing wipers
- auto dimming rear view mirror
- headlamp washers
- electric sliding door
- privacy glass for rear
- removable towbar
- 4motion four-wheel drive system
- California Beach Poptop picture thread at VWwatercooled forum
- Volkswagen Kombi Beach
- California Beach @ Caravan Salon in Dusseldorf - VWwatercooled Australia
- Volkswagen Driver, November 2006 page 27-30 -UK Publication
- VW Germany's California Website
- VW UK's California Website
- VW Australia's Kombi Beach Website
- VW Australia's California Website
|Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, a marque of the Volkswagen Group, car timeline, European market, 1950–present|
|Sedan delivery||Caddy I||Caddy II||Caddy III|
|Campervan||Westfalia California||California (T5)|
|Panel van derivatives||Type 2 (T1)||Type 2 (T2)||Transporter (T3)||Transporter (T4)||Transporter (T5)|
|LT I||LT II||Crafter|
Concepts and future models: Microbus Concept