Vans may not garner much interest from hardcore car enthusiasts, but their uncompromised utility should not go overlooked. Volkswagen understands this as it continues to develop a new generation of VW Caddy vans, which are in desperate need of an overhaul. The current model arrived in 2003 with facelifts in 2010 and 2015, but the model still rides on old bones – and that doesn't jive with the Volkswagen of 2019.
The new Caddy will ride on VW's MBQ platform that underpins many of the company's latest models. While spy photos show the regular-sized Caddy, there should be a longer Maxi version, though Volkswagen is rumored to integrate the Caddy into the VW T7 lineup as the T7 Life Caddy. It'll join the T7 Multivan while the T7 Family will replace the Sharan.
While VW has to keep the van's boxy proportions – it wouldn't be a van otherwise – the automaker is giving it modern looks. The front end appears a bit longer, and more car-like than before with the classic closed grille. The sliding doors return while the rear gets reworked. The small, square taillights are gone, replaced by units that appear to reach from the beltline to the roof.
The Caddy's move to VW's MBQ platform will also help with smarter packaging, optimizing interior cargo, and passenger space. The platform also allows VW to easily integrate new, alternative powertrains into the vehicle, such as a 48-volt mild-hybrid system, which should help the van meet ever-tightening European emissions standards.
The Volkswagen Caddy could debut in the second half of next year get pushed to the first quarter of 2021 before going on sale that year. Once the Caddy is out, Volkswagen will then replace the Sharan with the T7 Family the following year.