The new Crafter 4MOTION with four-wheel drive from Achleitner – with heavy loads on extreme off-road terrain

  • Four-wheel drive for the most challenging off-road conditions
  • With 3.5 or 5.0 tons on all terrain
  • Complete four-wheel drive range from Caddy to Crafter

Hanover, 8 November 2011: The new Volkswagen Crafter has been winning over customers since the spring of 2011 with its powerful but economical four-cylinder TDI engine – now it is also going off-road as a Crafter 4MOTION with four-wheel drive from Achleitner; the Austrian four-wheel drive specialist has developed a four-wheel drive system that provides compelling traction both on and off road. Thanks to high-grade four-wheel drive technology, the Crafter 4MOTION is, as far as the laws of physics allow, as capable of travel on all terrain as a true off-road vehicle.


The new Crafter 4MOTION with Achleitner four-wheel drive is celebrating its premier today at the Dakar 2012 press conference in Paris. Both the four-wheel drive Crafter and the Amarok will be at the Dakar as escort vehicles. The German public debut of the Crafter 4MOTION will be on 13 November at the Agritechnica international exhibition for agricultural machinery in Hanover.

The Crafter 4 MOTION with four-wheel drive from Achleitner is designed for use in extreme terrain, as the growing market increasingly demands for all-terrain transporters. Providers of alternative energy concepts, in particular, must increasingly gain access to regions that only rarely boast any kind of infrastructure. However, the building industry and emergency services, disaster relief organisations, the fire brigade and police are also relying on four-wheel drive vehicles more and more. A trend that Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has been shaping for years with its established 4MOTION models: the extremely successful Volkswagen Transporter T5 (approximately 11% of which are four-wheel drive per year) and the Volkswagen Caddy (approximately 6% of which are four-wheel drive per year) and, of course, the Amarok.

Reason enough to likewise equip the largest Transporter from Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles with a full-fledged four-wheel drive system. The four-wheel drive system from the Achleitner Company with low range reduction (2.5:1) is put to work to take account of the high mass that a Crafter has to move in extreme off-road conditions. It is defined by a permanent and uniform power distribution (50:50) on both axles with differential locks as standard in the transfer box and on the rear axle. As an extra option, a lock can also be ordered for the front axle. Equipped in this way, physics is the only thing limiting what the Crafter 4MOTION with four-wheel drive from Achleitner can do. When all of the locks are active, one wheel can transfer up to 100% of the drive torque. Compensation of the different torques in the drive train no longer occurs. Slip only occurs at the weakest point: between the tyre tread and the ground surface.

The changes have been extensive that the Achleitner Company has implemented on the front axle with independent suspension and the rigid rear axle. Reinforced springs with more displacement, stiffer shock absorbers with progressive damping, and modified stabilisers are just the most obvious changes that have been made. The overall result, regardless of which tyres have been chosen (for off-road or street), is a raised ground clearance of around ten centimetres.

The Crafter is equipped exclusively with the highest performing engine offering the most pulling power and featuring 120 kW (163 PS). The 2.0-litre bi-turbo, well-known from the Amarok and the Transporter, develops its maximum torque of a superb 400 Newton metres at only 1,800 rpm: enough power to start up and advance with the touch of a button in low range first gear in the toughest terrain with a full load, if necessary – regardless of whether as a 3.5 or 5.0 tonner.

The Crafter 4MOTION with four-wheel drive from Achleitner is available in all of the body variants Volkswagen is known for – as a window van, panel van, as well as chassis, single or double cab dropside transporter, with various wheelbases and roof forms.

The surcharge for Achleitner to retrofit a rear-wheel drive model with four-wheel drive is approximately €19,950 (net).
The Crafter 4MOTION with four-wheel drive from Achleitner is available to order immediately from Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles partners. Thus for this so-called two-invoice vehicle, the customer has just one contact person for the order and for service and warranty. This is arranged via select Commercial Vehicles partners. Initial deliveries are planned for the start of 2012.

5 Responses to “The new Crafter 4MOTION with four-wheel drive from Achleitner – with heavy loads on extreme off-road terrain”

  1. Thomas Mischler says:

    Will this version of the crafter be made available in Australia as right hand drive?

  2. Hi Thomas

    Interesting question…. It is difficult to imagine VW Australia offering this through it’s VWCV dealer network with that kind of uplift in price…. Still it has a nice symmetry with the legendary Syncro which also was manufactured in Austria and endured around $10,000 uplift in price in 1990 figures…..

  3. phantomcamel says:

    Nope – no plans for Australia!

  4. Interesting, the Merc Sprinter’s been available in AUS with 4×4 for a while now, so why did VW need help from Achleitner??

  5. phantomcamel says:

    Too expensive to manufracture the 4×4 by “Achleitner”

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