It’s finally happening.
Some 60 years after the Volkswagen Microbus became a symbol of peace, love, and happiness in the United States, a new version will land on dealer floors aimed at the modern, and somewhat affluent, hippie.
The ID Buzz has been a concept floating around the blog-o-sphere for at least six months, and now VW has confirmed that it will indeed go into production. However, it won’t happen until after a smaller electric compact car, simply called the ID, goes on sale by 2020.
Volkswagen plans to create a brand around the ID name, and a new bus will be a vital part of that strategy. A CNN story says,
The ID Buzz concept van is an all-wheel-drive vehicle with electric motors in front and back. Together, the motors can produce 369 horsepower. That’s a vast improvement over the famously underpowered and slow original VW Microbus, a vehicle that became an icon of the “flower power” movement of the late 1960s and early 1970s. The bus ID Buzz concept has a driving range of 270 miles, according to VW
The concept van is also designed for autonomous driving, with a rectangular steering wheel that retracts into the dashboard when not in use. With the steering retracted, the driver’s seat can be rotated around so the driver can talk with passengers while the van drives itself.
VW wants the ID series of vehicles to become the future of motoring. With full autonomy, electric motors, and the ability to control virtually everything with the touch of a finger, it just might be on the right track.
V-Dub is turning so aggressively toward electric vehicles, of course, due to the fallout from the diesel scandal that surfaced two years ago. Consequences of its massive cheat are still coming down, and one former executive was just sentenced to 40 months in prison and fined $200,000 for his role in the scandal.
The company itself has paid about $20 billion in fines and settlements, plus suffered the loss of its diesel program.
The move toward electricity comes out of necessity, but it appears that Volkswagen could become a leader and a visionary as we progress toward our transportation future.
Will the electric Volkswagen ID Buzz be a vehicle you’d want to take home?
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