Dream ride

After writing my first book on sustainable living, I knew the way it needed to be launched to the world was in person. With this in mind, I grabbed Tim, my husband, furniture from our lounge to create an epic event photo booth, several boxes of books, and blitzed around the country for three weeks. We covered over 4000 kilometres while hosting 14 events. Volkswagen’s support of the tour and loan of their all-new Multivan Plug-In Hybrid(PHEV) played a large part in making this tour happen so smoothly!

We affectionately named the Multivan ‘Fran’ and continued to be surprised by Fran’s features and capacity. Firstly, Fran has so much leg room and space that when you sit down in the driver’s seat your brain and body say ‘okay, let’s roadtrip’. She can seat 7 people, but because it was just the two of us on tour, we removed three of the seats to fit all our event props. The seats slide up and down rails. When you need to take them out, it’s as simple as folding the back down, pulling a handle, and picking the seat up. I was able to remove the seats easily on my own.

A PHEV was a great choice for this particular trip. The Multivan has a range of up to 50 kilometres* on pure electric and the hybrid mode was brilliant for our long stretches. The simple features like Adaptive Cruise Control, plenty of cup/snack storage, and CarPlay made a world of difference for such a packed tour. A highlight for us was the two-part panoramic sunroof. This made the car feel so spacious and the blue sky views were always there to look up at. I was also surprised at how Fran handled the road. Tim and I both expected her to feel more like a truck as she is quite big! But she felt more like a high car to drive and wasn’t as much of a nightmare in parking lots as I feared.

The launch of the Multivan is part of Volkswagen’s Way to Zero journey. That’s one thing that drew me to partnering with Volkswagen initially back in 2020: they see sustainability as a journey and have never tried to claim to me that they are doing everything perfectly. I respect that. Volkswagen has set the goal of cutting carbon their carbon emissions by half by 2025 and the last combustion-driven platform will be developed in 2026 – after that, only electric vehicles will be made.

I’m a huge advocate for public transport and biking, but I am also aware of the practicalities and accessibility of car-free modes of transport. Experiencing the Multivan PHEV made me excited to see the future of e-mobility branching out into family friendly vehicles and stoked that Volkswagen is working on practical solutions to contribute to the future of e-mobility. The future of transport needs to be sustainable environmentally, accessible to all, and practical. The Multivan PHEV fills a great need in this equation.

*All vehicles are tested according to WLTP (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure) and sets the Multivan PHEV range at up to 50km. Figures shown are for comparability purposes; only compare fuel consumption, CO2 and equivalent electric range figures with other vehicles tested to the same technical procedures. These figures may not reflect real life driving results, which will depend upon a number of factors including the accessories fitted (post-registration), variations in weather, driving styles, vehicle load.Figures for plug-in hybrid vehicles were obtained using a combination of battery power and fuel.

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