New 2022 Volkswagen Caddy California on sale now from £30,720

Volkswagen’s new Caddy California campervan undercuts the full-size model – and it comes with a foldable bed and a mini kitchen as standard

Volkswagen has made a few minor adjustments to the Caddy California’s price list for 2022, increasing the price of the base-model by around £750. Now, prices for the compact home- away-from-home start from £30,720.

Standard equipment is the same as before, with buyers getting collapsible camping chairs, a camping table and a retractable mini kitchen with a single-burner hob and an integrated gas bottle. The blinds for the rear windows also serve as storage bags, and there’s a couple of LED reading lights mounted in the cabin and on the tailgate.

The standard MPV’s rear bench seat has been swapped for a folding bed that measures 1,980mm long and 1,070mm wide. However, this can also be removed completely to turn the California back into a van. The rear of the campervan is littered with storage compartments, which Volkswagen says are ideal for holding cutlery and kitchen utensils.

Other standard features include 16-inch alloy wheels, electrically adjustable door mirrors, black roof rails and an anti-theft alarm system, along with assistance technology such as lane assist, cruise control and trailer assist. The cabin gets air conditioning, lumbar support for both front seats, a six-speaker stereo system and an 8.25-inch infotainment screen.

Buyers can also choose from a range of optional extras, the most interesting of which is a modular tent system which can either be connected to the rear of the campervan or used independently. Volkswagen says the tent increases the size of the campervan’s living space, allowing enough room for a family of four.

Other add-ons include a panoramic glass sunroof and the £984 California Plus pack, which bundles together a range of popular upgrades. It includes LED rear lights, power-latching side doors, rear privacy glass, two USB ports and a 230V inverter with a three-pin plug socket. The package also adds a front centre armrest with two cup holders.

The £30,720 entry-level variant is a standard wheelbase model, powered by a 112bhp 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine. Drive goes to the front wheels via a six-speed manual gearbox, although Volkswagen plans to introduce four-wheel drive to the Caddy California range at a later date, along with more engine options.

Above the petrol variant sits a pair of diesels, both based on the same 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine. The most powerful option for now has 120bhp and a starting price of £32,820, but there is a cheaper model with 101bhp. Both diesels are front-wheel drive, but the more powerful variant gets a seven-speed automatic gearbox in place of a six-speed manual. 

Every version of the Caddy California can also be had in Volkswagen’s larger Maxi body style. The Maxi adds an extra £1,356 to the campervan’s starting price, and is 353mm longer than the standard model (with a wheelbase that’s up 215mm).

With even the most expensive Maxi variant priced at £36,954, the Caddy California gives campers a much cheaper alternative to the Transporter-based California, which starts from £58,502 in Beach Tour trim. Or, to put this a different way, you could buy a pair of Caddy Californias for the price of the cheapest Crafter-based Grand California (from £80,603).

Are you in the market for a camper van? Check out our long-term report of the Volkswagen California Ocean

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