|Photo Credit: Volkswagen AG|
During the late 1960s, the classic Volkswagen Microbus was recognized as a staple with the Flower Power culture and the early figures leading to the current environmental-minded motions. Driven or ridden in by individuals of vision almost fifty years ago, Volkswagen Group has heeded calls towards greener motoring.
Intent to have one million of their vehicles per year sold powered by an electric powertrain by 2025, Volkswagen had already pledged to construct a production version of last year’s I.D. Electric concept car for 2020. Coming shortly after the unveiling of the compact all-electric vehicle, the German auto giant wildly imagined one of their most celebrated shapes adhering to their vision for the fast-approaching future. Premiering at the 2017 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the Volkswagen I.D. BUZZ concept car explored the versatility afforded through an electrified powertrain. Styling of the electric concept car wisely made no effort of hiding its inspiration of the beloved Microbus. Auto show goers were teased by an eight-passenger cabin with the ability of turning the rear seating into tables as well as a bed. Welcomed by audiences as another mix of classic design and modern technology, the Volkswagen I.D. BUZZ concept was also most recently awarded with 2017 Concept Truck of the Year honours at the Concours d’Elegance of America at St John’s. At the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, Volkswagen chose to again thrust their utilitarian concept design into the spotlight announcing its future as a production car.
Scheduled to hit showrooms by 2022, the road-going version of the Volkswagen I.D. BUZZ is coming to life thanks to a flood of demand according to company CEO Dr. Herbert Deiss. "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 Deiss who felt the announcement was well-placed in California.
|Photo Credit: Volkswagen AG|
Saying that the Volkswagen I.D. BUZZ concept car will retain many primary aspects exhibited since Detroit, the statement on the production of the vehicle implies a considerable transfer of ideas are coming. Flexible seating and sizable cargo space thanks to the I.D. BUZZ’s all-electric layout will be pivotal to the vehicle. Volkswagen also indicates a version of the I.D. BUZZ will be developed specifically as a cargo van.
The concept car’s all-wheel drive system will be an option on the upcoming showroom variant. It will remain to be seen how close Volkswagen will be able to match the performance specifications of their show vehicle with the production product. Applying Volkswagen’s Modular Electric Drive kit design, the modern microbus design promoted 369 horsepower from a pair of electric motors. The I.D. BUZZ concept car’s 111-kWh battery pack would allow the vehicle to travel an estimated 270 miles (470 kilometers) on a single charge. Connectivity as well as autonomous driving technology will also be coming to the 2022 production vehicle.
Since the Dieselgate scandal, Volkswagen Group has shifted focus from their TDI engines in favour of the electrified path much of the automobile industry is pursuing. Planning to welcome at least two dedicated electric vehicles to the Volkswagen brand within the next five years, the German automaker may become a strong player in the zero emissions marketplace if they can inspire the same customer passion that has existed with their diesel lineup.