Volkswagen has finally unveiled the production version of the ID.Buzz: a new electric version of the iconic VW microbus that now lives a segment of its own in the growing EV market.

But will it be loved as much as the original version?

We have been teased about VW relaunching its famous minibus as an electric vehicle for years now. The German automaker unveiled the ID.BUZZ electric microbus in Detroit back in 2017.

At first glance, it looked like just one more cool electric vehicle concept that Volkswagen was teasing but would never bring to market. However, the company surprised many by stating that it was serious about bringing the vehicle to market by 2023.

The company even invested in the production of the electric microbus in the US. Now, production is expected to start within the next year, both in the US and Germany.

Leading up to the start of production, several new prototypes of the ID.BUZZ have been spotted in the wild.

We noted that the electric vehicle seems to have been heavily updated with the production version and looked ugly – but it featured some significant camouflage that could be deceiving.

It got us worried, but the automaker has now fully unveiled the production version today and it got rid of most of our concerns.

The production version is certainly toned down from the original prototypes, but it looks more palatable than the recently seen prototypes.

The automaker only talked about European versions of the ID.Buzz, which are going to be equipped with a decent size 82 kWh battery pack as previously expected:

“The first European versions of the ID. Buzz and ID. Buzz Cargo will come to market with a high-voltage lithium-ion battery providing gross energy content of 82 kWh (77 kWh net). With its twelve modules, the battery system supplies a 201 horsepower electric motor, which drives the rear axle. Maximum torque of 229 lb-ft is instantly available and the top speed is electronically limited to 90 mph. More battery versions with various power output levels are expected to follow in 2023.”

While the automaker was willing to release the details of the powertrain, it didn’t want to release any figures when it comes to the range just yet.

The price has yet to be announced – though there have been reports stating that the electric minibus could start for less than $50,000.

The original VW microbus was so popular for its versatility and owners would modify the interior to their specifications.

Volkswagen will enable you to do that since you can even buy a “cargo version” that is bare inside:

As for the regular ID. Buzz, Volkswagen says that it will at first be only offered in a 5-seat configuration:

“The standard length ID. Buzz will launch with five seats. Driver and front-seat passenger sit on individual seats with adjustable armrests (standard on the inside, optional on the outside). Integrated into the backrests of each front seat is a side thorax airbag, and in the driver’s seat there is also a center airbag, which in the event of a crash protects the driver and front-seat passenger from hitting each other. In top trims, the seats are completely electrically adjustable and have both memory and massage functions. Front seats can be adjusted up to 245 mm (9.6 in) forward and aft, and 61.5 mm (2.4 in) in height. A three-person bench seat in the rear can be folded down completely or split 40:60, and it can be moved lengthways a total of 150 mm (5.9 in). A love for detail is reflected in the stylized vehicle silhouette that is embossed in the lower side seat trim, and the fold-down tables located in the backs of the front seats. Wholly practical, by contrast, is the optional height-adjustable trunk floor, which creates a level load space surface. The upward-opening rear hatch reveals 1,121 liters (39.6 cu ft) of luggage space. Two side sliding doors are fitted as standard.”

VW says that a six-seat configuration with three rows of 2 seats will come later along with also an extended wheelbase version that will allow a seven-seat configuration in a 2/3/2 arrangement.

The ID.Buzz is coming to Europe later this year with sales starting in May. However, it sounds like the launch in the US has been delayed to 2024.

VW ID.BUZZ Specs:

European models

  • ID. Buzz (five-seater)
  • ID. Buzz Cargo (van, three seats in the front)

Important anticipated dates

  • Start of European ID. Buzz Cargo production: first half of 2022
  • Start of European ID. Buzz production: first half of 2022
  • European launch (initial countries): third quarter of 2022
  • Start of advance sales in Europe (initial countries): May 2022
  • North American debut of long wheelbase: 2023
  • North American sales launch: 2024

Technical platform

  • Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB)

External dimensions

  • Width excluding wing mirrors: 1,985 mm (78.1 in)
  • Height:
    • ID. Buzz: 1937 mm (76.3 in)
    • ID. Buzz Cargo: 1,938 mm (76.3 in)
  • Length: 4,712 mm (185.5 in)
  • Wheelbase: 2,988 mm (117.6 in)
  • Load sill:
    • ID. Buzz: 619 mm (24.4 in)
    • ID. Buzz Cargo: 623 mm (24.5 in)

Cargo space

  • ID. Buzz: up to 1,121 liters (39.6 cu ft)
  • ID. Buzz Cargo: 3.9cubic meters (137.7 cu ft), room for two euro pallets

Drive system

  • Type: all-electric rear-wheel drive
  • Max. power: 150 kW (201 horsepower)
  • Max. torque: 310 Nm (229 lb-ft)
  • Battery capacity: 82 kWh gross, 77 kWh net
  • AC charging power (alternating current): 11 kWh
  • DC charging power (direct current) at fast-charging stations: up to 170 kWh

Driving performance and turning circle

  • Top speed: 145 km/h, electronically limited (90 mph)
  • Driving range: to follow at a later date
  • Turning circle: just over 11 meters (36.4 ft)

Sustainability

  • Zero-tailpipe emission electric drive system
  • Leather replaced by non-animal material
  • Use of partial recycled materials in seat covers, floor coverings and roof liner

Production site

  • Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles’ main plant in Hannover, Germany

Colors

  • Non-metallic: ‘Candy White’
  • Metallic: ‘Mono Silver’, ‘Lime Yellow’, ‘Starlight Blue’, ‘Energetic Orange’ and ‘Bay Leaf Green’
  • Pearl-effect: ‘Deep Black’
  • Two-tone: ‘Candy White’ in combination with ‘Lime Yellow’, ‘Starlight Blue’, ‘Energetic Orange’ or ‘Bay Leaf Green’

Fun Facts

  • The ID. Buzz is not the first ‘Bus with an electric drivetrain—50 years ago at the Hannover Trade Fair, Volkswagen showed a T2 powered by a rear-mounted electric motor with a maximum range of 85 kilometers (52.8 miles)
  • The five-seater ID. Buzz features a stylized silhouette of the vehicle embossed into the side of the luggage compartment and seats, reminiscent both of the T1 and the Microbus concept vehicle unveiled in 2000 in Detroit
  • The idea for the movable and removable center console of the production ID. Buzz originated in the 2017 I.D. BUZZ Detroit concept car

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