Monday, September 12, 2011
Volkswagen released its new Transporter vans in 1992, moving the engine to the front and also driving the front wheels. It made a lot of sense in terms of improved crash worthiness and increased internal space - allowing a full-length, low floor.
The Volkswagen Transporter is available as a van (short and long wheel base) and as a crew-cab pickup (ABOVE). A people-mover version, the Volkswagen Caravelle, becomes available in Australia in late 1997.
Volkswagen Transporters can be ordered with the optional Syncro "constant four wheel drive system" which uses a viscous coupling. Volkswagen is sticking to "4WD" terminology rather than the "AWD" alternative. The engine and transmission are transversely mounted in the nose to provide front wheel drive. In the Syncro Transporter, drive is taken off the front differential's crown wheel by a pinion to a propeller shaft. This is in three sections, joined by constant velocity joints, and takes the drive to a rear differential. The viscous coupling is incorporated in the input to the differential. There is no dog-clutch to rigidly lock the viscous coupling.
Rear suspension remains independent by semi-trailing arms on the Syncro, as for the front wheel drive models.
Today's Transporter Syncro is not as capable an offroader as the old rear-engined Syncro which had quite surprising abilities, particularly in the tougher 16"-wheel version. The modern Syncro is more of a slippery-roader than an offroader.
Volkswagen Transporter Series
Transporter Van, 3 seats, 3 doors
loa: 4707mm, width: 1620mm, height: 1415mm
wheelbase: 2920mm, track: 1589mm/1554mm, grnd clearance: 180mm
turning radius: 5.85m
weight: 1525kg-1695kg (unladen), GVM: 2800kg, towing: 700kg (unbraked)
Digifant 1968cc, petrol, 4-cyl
62kW at 4300rpm, 159Nm at 2200rpm
Simos 2461cc, petrol, 5-cyl
85kW at 4500rpm, 200Nm at 2200rpm
2370cc, diesel, 5-cyl
57kW at 3700rpm
164Nm at 1800rpm-2200rpm
transmission: 5m/4a, Syncro: front wheel drive + drive to rear wheels via viscous coupling
suspension: indep'+torsion-bars/ semi-trailing-arms+coils, brakes: disc/disc
wheels: 6Jx15, fuel-tank: 80L
Price: from $28K (4x2 van) $au, 1997, 1998
Transporter SWB 2.5 petrol or 2.4 diesel 5-spd Synco 4WD $38,490 rrp
Transporter LWB 2.5 petrol or 2.4 diesel 5-spd Synco 4WD $40,490 rrp
Transporter cCab 2.5 petrol or 2.4 diesel 5-spd Synco 4WD $39,990 rrp
Transporter cab chassis 2.5 petrol or 2.4 diesel 5-spd Synco 4WD $35,990 rrp ('98)
Rivals: Iveco van, Mercedes-Benz Sprinter
Long Wheel Base Van and Crew Cab:
wheel base: 3320mm, van loa: 5107mm, crew-cab loa: 5136mm
turning radius: 6.45m, weight: 1645kg - 1745kg,
Thanks to Peter Farrer, Tom Niksch and others.
Go to the VW News, Volkswagen or Transporter, rear engined pages
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