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article imageVolkswagen's new electric minibus will hit the road in 2022

By Karen Graham     Aug 21, 2017 in Technology
On August 19, Volkswagen announced at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in California that its electric microbus, the I.D. BUZZ concept car, will go into production, with the vehicle arriving at dealerships in 2022.
Volkswagen is desperate to clean up its image, particularly in the North American market, after the "Dieselgate" fiasco, and there are high hopes riding on this remake of the iconic California minibus many people remember from the 1960s.
The production model of the concept vehicle will not be a whole lot different from the original minibus with the exception that all the batteries will be under the floor. The Verge suggests we think of a longer, van-like Chevy Bolt, and that's what the new electric Microbus will look like.
"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 in a press release: "The Microbus has long been part of the California lifestyle. Now we're bringing it back by reinventing it as an electric vehicle."
The I.D. Buzz concept will go into production  sparking a new generation of Microbus fans.
CC Licen...
The I.D. Buzz concept will go into production, sparking a new generation of Microbus fans. CC License: Attrition, no deriv.
Pushing new tech with a classic style
The production model of the I.D. BUZZ — it hasn't been given an official name yet — will feature all the electric drive components, including a longer wheelbase and the added benefit of a roomier interior. And like the Tesla Model X, its doors open and close automatically.
And like other electric vehicles, the I.D. BUZZ is capable of 0-60 acceleration in under five seconds. The battery pack gives the microbus a range of about 270 miles per charge, about the same as the Tesla Model X and the Chevy Bolt. The iconic flat-nosed front of the minibus has been retained, made possible with the batteries being fitted under the vehicle.
The I.D. BUZZ has been designed as a multi-use vehicle, suitable for passengers and cargo. “Along with a minibus version, we’ll also be offering an I.D. BUZZ CARGO variant for zero-emissions delivery of goods,” Volkswagen’s CEO of Commercial Vehicles, Dr. Eckhard Scholz said at the event. “With Level 3 autonomous capability, this is an ideal concept for an electric van, particularly for delivering packages and goods to the inner cities.”
Volkswagen Type 2 late split screen version at Beaulieu German Autofest;
CC License: Attrition  no ...
Volkswagen Type 2 late split screen version at Beaulieu German Autofest; CC License: Attrition, no deriv.
The "Hippie" counterculture's mode of transportation
The Volkswagen Type 2, known officially (depending on body type) as the Transporter, Kombi or Microbus, and unofficially known as the "Bus," was introduced in 1950 after the introduction of Type 1, or Beetle.
And because of its popularity during the counterculture movement of the 1960s, the Hippie van or wagon still remains iconic for many hippies today. It could be used to transport crowds of people or bands and was even used as a mobile home. One unusual difference with the Type 2 was that like the 1947 Citroën H Van, it was among the first 'forward control' vans in which the driver was placed above the front road wheels.
More about Volkswagen, minibus, ID BUZZ Microbus, autonomous driving, Electric vehicle