Volkswagen Remakes Their Classic Van Into An All-Electric Concept Vehicle
The German car maker has unveiled a new model of their 60s microbus as part of its I.D program
When you get a glimpse of Volkswagen’s latest concept vehicle, you realize that cars in 2017 are finally embracing the futuristic aesthetic we always dreamt about in shows like The Jetson’s (with the exceptions of flying capabilities of course!). Blending past with present, Volkswagen’s 60s campervan was given a modern makeover to become the I.D. Buzz. Displayed at CES 2017, it has an electric battery capable of accelerating the van to a top speed of 99 mph and even includes an autonomous driving feature (that won’t become available until 2025, mind you). In fact, the Buzz is one of the 30 car models Volkswagen plans to release as part of the company’s I.D program to develop all-electric cars.
The I.D. program was first shown to the public at the Paris Motor Show in October 2016. Volkswagen plans to equip all cars developed in this program with electric motors, capable of taking the vehicles between 249 to 373 miles on a single charge. The company has a goal of selling a million of the vehicles developed in the program a year, come 2025.
The campervan holds up to eight people and has two luggage compartments. When the autonomous feature releases, drivers can retract the wheel into the dashboard and turn their seats to face the other passengers to speak to them face-to-face. The seats are on a track built into the floor, giving passengers the option to choose how far apart the seats should distribute to provide adequate room inside.
Between the two front seats sits a screen that displays all of the vehicle’s controls. From here, a driver can receive directions and view a road map, adjust the vehicle’s temperature, see a local weather report and receive notifications from the connected smartphone. Connected to a track, it can be slid backwards for the passengers to view.
As part of the I.D program, every new Volkswagen car owner must have a personal profile. These profiles identify a user’s personalized settings, such as temperature controls, music, contact information of friends and many more options. The profiles sync to Volkswagen’s cloud network and therefore can be uploaded to additional cars should the owner require a replacement.
If the I.D. Buzz does get the green light to go into production, it is estimated it will launch in 2022. The first car in the I.D. program on the whole will go into production in 2019 and released in 2020.