VW to bring ID Buzz Concept into production with market release set in 2022

Article by Christian A., on August 24, 2017

Volkswagen’s Microbus has already gained an iconic status thanks to the free spirit that it has come to symbolize. Since 2001, the German carmaker has been introducing different Microbus concepts. The latest of these concepts was unveiled at the 2017 Detroit Auto Show – the Volkswagen ID Buzz Concept. Featuring a full electric drive sending power to all four wheels as well as an electric range of 270 miles (US driving cycle), the VW ID Buzz Concept was a study that was hard to ignore.

Now, VW can no longer ignore the appeal of and the enticing proposition by the ID Buzz Concept. Volkswagen chief executive Herbert Diess remarked during the Pebble Beach Concours D’Elegance event in Pebble Beach, California, following presentations at the global motor shows in Detroit, Michigan and in Geneva, Switzerland, that the carmaker has been receiving a large number of letters and e-mails from customers urging the German company to bring the ID Buzz Concept into production,

During the event, the German carmaker announced that it has decided to go beyond the Microbus concept and bring the ID Buzz Concept into production. The announcement – made by Diess (who also serves as chairman of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen brand) and Eckhard Scholz (sitting as chair of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand) – doesn’t mean that the production version of the ID Buzz Concept is coming soon though, as interested customers would have to wait half a decade later to get a piece of this futuristic iteration of the Microbus in 2022.

The ID Buzz Concept is powered by a pair of electric motors -- one on the front and another on the rear – that develop a total system output of 369 hp. This is enough to make all-wheel drive EV sprint from zero to 60 mph in 5 seconds and reach a top speed of up to 99 mph. Energy is derived from a large 111-kWh battery pack that has a range of 270 miles (expected US driving cycle) or 600 km as per NEDC cycle. The battery could be recharged up to 80 of capacity in just 30 minutes using a fast charger.

Just like the ID Buzz Concept, the production model will feature batteries mounted on the vehicle floor. It will have a long wheelbase with short overhangs, thanks to the fact that its electric drive components – like its electric motor and power electronics – won't use much space. This allows the production version of the ID Buzz Concept to offer a very spacious interior that could comfortably accommodate eight passengers. Diess remarked that while the production form of the ID Buzz Concept would look like a compact commercial van, it offers the generous interior space typical of a large sports utility vehicle.

Interestingly, the production version of the ID Buzz Concept would have a Level 3 autonomous capability, which means that some "safety-critical functions" could be left to the vehicle under certain conditions.

Press Release

VOLKSWAGEN TAKES BOLD DECISION TO PUT I.D. BUZZ ELECTRIC CONCEPT CAR INTO PRODUCTION

At the Detroit Show in early 2017, Volkswagen showed the I.D. BUZZ concept car, a fully electric vehicle that taps in to the spirit and vibe that made the VW Microbus such an iconic vehicle — whether with Hippies and families in the Sixties or Surfer Dudes and Van Lifers today.

Now, Volkswagen has taken the bold decision to put the Volkswagen I.D. BUZZ concept car into production and Volkswagen’s CEO of the North American Region, Hinrich J. Woebcken is happy to welcome the car to NorthAmerica. The Chairmen of the Boards of Management of the Volkswagen and Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brands, Dr Herbert Diess and Dr Eckhard Scholz, announced the decision today at one of the most prestigious automotive events in the world — the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in California.

Within the framework of further development, Volkswagen has also set a launch date for the I.D. BUZZ. The vehicle will arrive at dealerships in 2022, after the compact four-door I.D. makes its debut. With the I.D. BUZZ, Volkswagen is mainly targeting markets in North America, Europe and China.

"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’,” Volkswagen CEO Dr Herbert Diess said in Pebble Beach. The Board of Management chose Pebble Beach as the location to make its announcement because, as Diess explained: "The Microbus has long been part of the California lifestyle. Now we're bringing it back by reinventing it as an electric vehicle."

Just like the concept car that was shown in Detroit, the production model will also have its batteries mounted in the vehicle floor. Because the electric drive components — electric motor, power electronics, and such — don't take up much space, the vehicle has a long wheelbase with short overhangs, allowing for a massively spacious interior and great proportions. "The vehicle looks like a compact commercial van on the outside, even though it offers the generous interior space of a large SUV," Diess explained.

CEO of the North American Region, Volkswagen, Hinrich J. Woebcken added: “We are delighted that our parent company has taken the decision to produce the I.D. BUZZ. This vehicle is the perfect balance between emotion, usability and sustainability, while also showcasing our technological leadership. The high seating position, cargo capacity, overall versatility and all-wheel drive option packaged into such an appealing design is just what our customers want from us. And it’s the perfect fit for the zero-emissions American lifestyle.”

The I.D. BUZZ won’t just be a passenger vehicle. Just like the classic T2, the I.D. BUZZ will both haul people and haul freight. "Along with a minibus version, we'll also be offering an I.D. BUZZ CARGO variant for zero- emissions delivery of goods,” said Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles CEO Dr Eckhard Scholz. "With Level 3 autonomous capability, this is an ideal concept for an electric van, particularly for delivering packages and goods to the inner cities."

Although Volkswagen's oldest and newest Microbuses will be separated by more than seven decades when the new model is launched, the I.D. BUZZ undoubtedly has the original's genes, as it offers maximum utilization of space on the footprint of a mid-size passenger car. Based on the new all-electric architecture, the production version of the I.D. BUZZ will incorporate many design ideas from the concept car, including multi- variable seating, interactive connectivity and highly automated driving.

Source: VW

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