Article provided by Volkswagen South Africa
Safe transport solutions are for everybody
Getting a disability rebate is a useful way to ease the costs of adding adaptations to a vehicle. Volkswagen South Africa engages with opportunities to make independence, interdependence, and mobility more accessible for people living with disabilities. From product to service, Volkswagen assists in the access of transport solutions that are safe and comfortable. The Volkswagen Caddy and Transporter range already feature an ergonomic design, but it can be enhanced to accommodate your specific needs. Below is concise information exploring what a disability rebate is, its benefits and how exactly Volkswagen’s Caddy and Transporter range can help when reasoning for one.
Everything you need to know about disability rebates
What is a disability rebate? A disability rebate is a partial refund used to mitigate the costs of a product or service. In the automotive world, a disability rebate appears in the import duties of an imported car, such as a Volkswagen Caddy and Transporter. Essentially, it is intended to alleviate the costs of adaptations needed for a vehicle, making it more accessible for its user(s).
All about the versatility of the Volkswagen Caddy and Transporter range
The Volkswagen Caddy and Transporter range provide a comfortable design from the start, but it can be improved to accommodate the specific needs of users with disabilities. With its cutting-edge safety features, ergonomic interior, and easy access through its side and/or rear entry, the Caddy and Transporter range can serve as an effective transport solution. Let’s break it down:
Each Caddy or Transporter is constructed with a lot of space in mind. Their payload capacity can carry as much weight as possible, and their multiple lashing rings help keep anything secure. Space within their load area is ample, equipped to fit any mobility aid and other supplies needed for your journey.
Tailgate, side sliding or rear wing doors make access easy. Either of these entry options makes sure that, for example, a wheelchair user can have convenient access as either a passenger or driver. For rear-entry, ramps and platform lifts can be installed to enhance access. While for side-entry, similar adaptations can also be fitted.
While driving, the Transporter, Caddy Kombi, and Caddy Cargo are equipped with powerful halogen headlights that are far-reaching, ensuring safer night-time travels. These headlights also contain range control and daytime running lights that are permanently switched on during your drive. LED headlights, which are standard on Caddy and Transporter Kombi 146kW while optional on Caddy Kombi, Caddy Cargo, and the rest of the Transporter range also work to amplify visibility.
Inside each Caddy and Transporter, more LED technology is used to illuminate your entire load area, allowing you to safely navigate the space while managing mobility aids, medical kits and/or general equipment.
Driver assistance has many features that support you while you drive. These include Auto-hold and Electronic Parking Brake (E-brake) on the Caddy range. Both technologies are used to make parking easy. Auto-hold stops your car when it detects accidental forward or backwards motion, while E-brake simply makes your parking quicker and more efficient.
Additional features like Cruise and Park Distance Control use sensors to monitor the surroundings of your car and alert you if you are too close to another object or surface. Cruise control comes standard on Caddy, Caddy Kombi, Transporter Crew Bus, and Transporter Kombi and is optional on Caddy Cargo and Transporter Panel Van. While Park Distance control is standard on Caddy and Transporter Kombi and optional on Caddy Kombi, Caddy Cargo, and the rest of the Transporter range.
Besides these sophisticated features, the Volkswagen Caddy and Transporter range have a structure suitable for the addition of any type of adaptation, such as railings for users with disabilities to hold on to and/or lifting devices such as a Turney seat. Multiple models are available in automatic, which means that they can be adapted for hand controls or left foot pedals. The Caddy and Transporter are also one of the preferred vehicles in South Africa that have been certified to have lower floor conversions made. This is because of their front-wheel drive with an MQB platform that has independent suspension, making loading and unloading much safer. Crosswind Assist is also available, particularly on the Transporter range. This safety feature spots track offset through strong winds. It essentially helps you remain in your lane while driving by quickly correcting sudden steering misdirection.
All about the service
Volkswagen has developed a service to guide consumers when obtaining a disability rebate. The process goes as follows: after communicating with your selected dealer, the dealer will check if there is a suitable vehicle available in our bond store. If there’s none, the dealer will check what’s available further up the pipeline. And if nothing is available, an order will be placed for a new one. Once the new vehicle arrives at customs, Volkswagen South Africa issues a customs clearance notification with your ITAC documentation and then makes a provisional payment. When cleared, SARS will issue an official letter that the adaptation of the vehicle qualifies for a rebate of duty. When the dealer receives this letter, Volkswagen makes additional communication with customs concerning payments. Finally, a waiting period of between 6 to 8 weeks occurs for the refund to be fully cleared.
How to acquire a disability rebate
The Caddy and Transporter range are all fully imported vehicles, so they qualify for the maximum rebate amount of approximately 15%. Note that this figure is always in flux since it gets re-evaluated annually. Here is a summary of the steps you need to know:
- Choose your vehicle and motivate your choice. Make sure to include a quote, brochure, and a homologation certificate from your dealer.
- Decide on your adaptations. With your preferred Volkswagen South Africa dealer, guidance is given on which company is suitable for the adaptations and a quotation is also obtained for you.
- Complete a rebate application form. The application form is available through the National Council of and for Persons with Disabilities (NCPD).
- Provide a doctor’s letter and identification documents. For drivers, a license should be supplied. While for passengers, a declaration for a designated driver and their ID should be included. Make sure to send all these documents to NCPD.
- Once an import permit (ITAC) has been received, supply it to your dealer.
Let us catch up
Again, a disability rebate is a useful resource to ease the cost of adding adaptations to your vehicle. When applying for one, you need to motivate your vehicle of choice. The design of each Volkswagen Caddy and Transporter is suitable for use by people living with disabilities, making them a sound choice to reason for. Adaptations can easily be applied to make experiencing a Caddy or Transporter more personalised. From rear and/or side accessibility to smart driver assist systems, Volkswagen aims to support users with disabilities as much as possible. This also includes serving as a mediator between you and SARS when applying for a disability rebate. Ultimately, Volkswagen believes that access to safer transport solutions should be more attainable and is happy to be a part of the process.