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Monday, June 13, 2011

Volkswagen’s Transporter Sportline Van Has Us Eagerly Planning Bank Robberies

May 25, 2011 at 12:20pm by Alexander Stoklosa

Europe is filled with vans that we at Car and Driver constantly lament not being able to buy here in the U.S., and now Volkswagen has released its Britain-only Transporter Sportline to really zing our van love-o-meter. The sport van concept isn’t new—Ford offers a SportVan version of its ubiquitous (in Europe) Transit, and we recently finished our Mazdaspeed 5 project van—but it is ever cool, despite lacking the Ford’s go-faster stripes. The Sportline goes for a subtle, under-the-radar look enhanced by a subtle body kit, classy chrome-smattered headlights flanking a glossy black grille, smoked taillights, and 18-inch five-spoke wheels available in either silver or satin black. The van is available in three sporty colors: silver, the oh-so-cool black seen in the photo above, or white with a gloss-black roof. The interior receives two-tone leather appointments, a nav unit with a 7-inch touch screen, rear parking sensors, Bluetooth connectivity, power windows, and the intriguingly dangerous-sounding “semi-automatic air conditioning.”

The vans are powered by a 178 hp, 2.0-liter diesel four-cylinder engine paired with either a six-speed manual or an available seven-speed DSG dual-clutch automated manual. Performance is hardly impressive, but with quoted 0-to-62 mph times in the 10-second range, the vans are reasonably quick by cargo-carrier standards. The Sportline can be had in short- or long-wheelbase versions clad in either panel or passenger-van “kombi” bodywork. Prices start at $53,862 for a short-wheelbase Sportline panel van, after accounting for current exchange rates and the UK’s value-added tax. But it’s a sporty van, and just think of how cool you’d look fleeing a bank robbery in it.

Tags: Volkswagen, Volkswagen Transporter Sportline |

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