Usually, when we feature spy photos of an all-black prototype from Volkswagen Group at the Nurburgring, it’s something with a Porsche crest and gobs of horsepower. That’s not to say you can’t drive a trusty VW Multivan T7 with some zest under your foot, but that could wreak havoc with all the camping gear stowed in the back.
That holds especially true with this Multivan, spied leaning through a long corner at the Green Hell. We don’t see a lick of camouflage anywhere, which isn’t a surprise since the current model debuted in June 2021 for the 2022 model year. What we do see is a thick roof up top and a bit more body behind the rear wheels. Our spies believe this is a new T7 California, fitted with a pop-up roof and dual awnings for a classic California camping experience. And hey, even camper vans need thorough performance evaluations, so why not lap it around the Nurburgring?
This isn’t the first time we caught wind of a new California. In March 2023, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles CEO Carsten Intra made an unexpected announcement for such a beast debuting later in the year. Earlier in August we received a pair of teaser sketches showing the van and a glimpse of a digital control panel for its on-board systems.
And just a few days ago, Intra confirmed on LinkedIn that a California debut would take place at Caravan Salon 2023 in Düsseldorf. The show is regarded as the largest of its kind in the world, and it opens to the public on August 25. So yeah, the reveal is happening very soon.
It’s important to note that the imminent debut won’t be the final form of the T7 California, but rather, a concept. That said, our spy sources believe the black van caught on camera is a production model that should reach dealerships in the spring of 2024. Based on what we see in these images, we can’t imagine the concept being significantly different. The core vehicle is still the Multivan T7, with power coming from either a 150-horsepower diesel or a 204-hp gasoline engine.
Stand by for full information coming later this week.