We like animals.  We like Volkswagen vans.  This seems like a match made in heaven.  Beginning today, Britain's RSPCA has put its first short wheelbase BlueMotion Crafter van into service, tasked with transporting in-need animals around the country.  In total, the nine specially-tailored vehicles will save the RSPCA roughly £800,000 a year, helping to shuttle some 20,000 animals between shelters and other destinations.  Each of these nine Crafters will be adorned with designs created by schoolchildren, with an emphasis on bringing attention to the organization.

Read the full Press Release below.
  • RSPCA rolls out first of six converted Crafter vans, provided by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles  
  • All six vans undergo bespoke conversions to fit the needs of the RSPCA and be wrapped in the winning designs of a national school children’s competition

Britain’s biggest animal welfare charity, the RSPCA, has rolled out the first of six new short wheelbase CR30 2.0-litre TDI 136 PS BlueMotion Crafter vans, marking the fruition of a three-year partnership between the charity and Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.

The partnership is designed to save the lives of thousands of animals across England and Wales by helping transport 20,000 animals in need of care all over the country, saving the charity £800,000 a year, and allowing them to give treatment to more animals in need of veterinary care.

To meet the very specialist needs of the RSPCA, the vans have also been converted and – as with all Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles’ ‘Engineered for You’ vehicles – tailored to suit the organisation’s specific requirements.

Adjustments include the load-space being fully sealed with a spray-on waterproof liner in order to enable the charity’s workers to easily wash out the vans after use, as well as the roofs of the vans being fitted with a ‘Flettner Ventilator’, in order to provide the animals in the back with a constant stream of fresh air.

The Crafters have also each been fitted with a total of nine bespoke cages, which vary in size to suit all animals, from a small cat to a large dog. All cages also have removable partitions between them to allow the RSPCA to pick up and transport more ‘unusual’ passengers.

The vans have also all been wrapped in the colourful winning designs of school children, who were challenged to design the outside as part of a nationwide competition.

Operational benefits for the RSPCA include low whole-life and running costs, and a fuel efficient engine that returns 39.8 mpg (combined) and emits only 187g/km of CO 2 ; helping to save on fuel costs and reduce the fleet's impact on the environment.

Chris Black, Head of Fleet for Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, said: ‘This partnership with the RSPCA demonstrates our ongoing commitment to working with Britain’s businesses and organisations.

'It’s great to be able to work with the RSPCA in this way and we are proud to have been chosen by them – it shows that we are recognised for providing products of outstanding quality that are flexible, and can be tailored to a business’s bespoke needs.’

Matthew Cull, the RSPCA’s High Value Giving Manager, said: ‘The impact this commitment from Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles will have on the day-to-day management of our core animal welfare activity is huge.

‘The Networking Project allows our staff on the frontline at animal centres to make the best decisions and use all our available resources in the most cost effective and efficient way.The Crafters are key to making this happen."