Volkswagen on Friday unveiled its new ID. Buzz, a retro van reminiscent of the 1960s.
The company added a third row of seats for North America and made the van longer. America needs room, the head of the company wryly explained.
Volkswagen of America chief executive Paolo Di Se said the new version of the classic design is “tailor-made for the North American consumer.” He said the U.S. version is 10 inches longer than the two-row model being sold in Europe. It’s still not huge, he said. At about 194.4 inches end to end, it’s still about 10 inches shorter than a Chrysler Pacifica minivan, but still seats as many as seven, CNN reported.
It will have more legroom and headroom in addition to a longer wheelbase, Kelly Blue Book reported in a review of the vehicle.
The ID. Buzz is designed to recall the Volkswagen T1, or Transporter. That van was introduced in 1949 and is better known as the Microbus, or just the VW Bus. In America of the 1960s, the iconic vehicle became associated with the counterculture and the Hippie movement. But the Bus was also popular with big families long before the rear-wheel drive was invented by Chrysler 1 in the 1980s, according to CNN.
The ID. Buzz is probably going to be released in the U.S. in the summer of 2024, officials told CNN. And like the original, it’ll be rear-wheel driven with a motor in the back. But it will be more powerful and much quieter.
The Buzz will be able to push 232 horsepower, 10 times more than the original, and will be able to do 90 mph. There will also be a four-wheel drive model, with engines in the front and back, and it will able to do 99 mph from a massive 332 horsepower. The all-electric vehicle has a range of about 275 miles, it’s more luxurious than the predecessor — and it is probably going to start at about $50,000, according to kbb.com, which also expects ID. Buzz to come with a complimentary charging package. Its sister vehicle, the ID. 4 van, gets “three years of unlimited 30-minute charging.”
KBB also reported that because the ID. Buzz is made in Germany, it will not be eligible for U.S. electrical vehicle tax credits.