Lower spec California here to make everything seem alright
By Sam Sheehan / Tuesday, October 13, 2020
Turns out you don't just have to be a maker of hand sanitiser to experience an upside to Covid-19; campervan sales are booming, too. Case in point: so significant has the growth in demand been for Volkswagen's touring models that it's seen fit to re-introduce the more affordable Beach variant to its California range. And don't chalk it up to coincidence either, the manufacturer directly attributes the latest California's popularity to the surge in British staycations this year.
For a starting price of £52,062 – substantially less than you'll pay for the most kitted-out model – you get a 150hp 2.0-litre TDI and a choice of Camper or Tour grade. The latter is the entry-level, which does without many of the California niceties, retaining space for five – or even seven if you really want – while providing the manual pop-up hydraulic roof and camping table.
Step up to Camper, as you'd imagine most Brits will, and you get the pull-out mini kitchen which includes a single gas hob and pull-out awning. Needless to say you still get the independent heating system which doesn't require the engine to be running for the California to be kept cosy.
Elsewhere the Beach includes 17-inch alloy wheels and DAB radio with App Connect for attaching your smartphone to. And in case you think autumn an odd time to be adding to the California lineup, rest assured that a new model ordered in October is not likely to be delivered till March 2021 – perfectly timed for the weather to break, and an effective Covid vaccine to land. Maybe.
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