VW to manufacture electric Microbus
The I.D. BUZZ concept car from Volkswagen is being further developed in preparation for its launch as a production vehicle. The Chairmen of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen and Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brands, Dr. Herbert Diess and Dr. Eckhard Scholz, announced their production decision at the Concours d'Elegance in Pebble Beach, CA. "Just the right place for the I.D. BUZZ," explained Diess. "The vehicle is an important pillar in Volkswagen's electric drive initiative and carries the Microbus driving feeling into the future."
Volkswagen plans to have the I.D. BUZZ arrive at dealerships after the compact four-door I.D. model in 2022. Volkswagen is mainly targeting the markets in North America, Europe, and China with both the I.D. BUZZ and the I.D. family overall.
"After the presentations at the global motor shows in Detroit and Geneva, we received a large number of letters and emails from customers who said, 'please build this car,'" said Diess, who added, "The Microbus, which is what the Bulli is called in America, has always been part of the California lifestyle. Now we're bringing it back by developing Volkswagen's next e-generation and by reinventing the Bulli as an electric vehicle."
The production model will have its batteries mounted in the vehicle floor, and the front and rear axles can be mounted far apart from one another because of the space savings offered by the electric drive. This results in a long wheelbase and short overhangs, which makes for more space in the interior. "The vehicle therefore looks like a short compact van on the outside, even as it offers the generous interior space of a large van," Diess said.
"Along with a minibus version, we'll also be offering an I.D. BUZZ Cargo variant for zero-emission delivery operations in a Level 3 vehicle that boasts a high degree of automated driving capability," said Scholz. "It's an ideal electric van concept, particularly for inner cities."
The I.D. BUZZ has a length of 4,942 mm (195 in), a width of 1,976 mm (78 in), and a height of 1,963 mm (77 in). The production version, which is based on the new all-electric architecture, will incorporate many design ideas from the concept car. It will also feature variable seating, interactive connectivity, and automated driving.
Expansion of the electric vehicle range is part of Volkswagen's Strategy 2025, which foresees more than 30 all-electric models by that time.