Truck Rewind: Volkswagen Crafter Atacama Concept – Could Have Been Overlanding Magic…

The Volkswagen Crafter Atacama Concept dates back to 2006 and, despite the fact that it was “only” a design study, it certainly looks like it would be a hell of a lot of fun to drive. Talk about an off-road vehicle that has a ton of overloading potential; the Volkswagen Crafter Atacama Concept looks like a real contender.

Unfortunately, there is very little information about the drive-train and capabilities out there. It’s a pretty good bet that it has an I5 TDI (2.0 – 2.5-liter) power-plant and a 6-speed manual,
or, perhaps a 6-speed Shiftmatic automatic transmission. It’s possible that it has either a shiftable 4Motion and/or permanent 4Motion all-wheel-drive systems.

The regular Volkswagen Crafter comes in several sizes and configurations. Double Cabs have payloads ranging from 3,245 to 6,671 lbs and and come in Gross Vehicle Weights (GVW) of either 3.5 or 5.3 royal-metric tonnes. While we’re sure that the lifted Volkswagen Crafter Atacama Concept with the additional drag of an all-wheel/4-wheel drive system would change most of these measurements, we do not know by how much.

There’s no mention if the Volkswagen Crafter Atacama Concept was ever considered a production possibility, but it would have gone over like gangbusters with the overland crowed, both locally and overseas. At the very least, it is one of the best looking vans we’ve seen from Volkswagen in a long time.

It should be added that Volkswagen builds an electric version of the Crafter, which begs the question, “What if they took an ID Buzz Van and built it for off-roading? Would it resemble the Volkswagen Crafter Atacama Concept? Boy, we hope so!

Let us know what you think!

Speaking of overlanding…

Easily amused by anything with four wheels, Nathan Adlen reviews vehicles from the cheapest to the most prestigious. Wrecking yards, dealer lots, garages, racetracks, professional automotive testing and automotive journalism - Nathan has experienced a wide range of the automotive spectrum. Brought up in the California car culture and educated in theater, childhood education, film, journalism and history, Nathan now lives with his family in Denver, CO. His words, good humor and video are enjoyed worldwide.