ID. Buzz: VW Revives the Kombi for All-Electric Future

Ask anyone who’s had a chance to sit behind the wheel of a Volkswagen Bus and cruise around the streets of their local beach for 5-mins and you’ll realise the extreme levels of appreciation there are for the VW Type 2. With a cult following, the bus remains one of the coolest vehicles to ever hit the road and although VW made more than a whopping 4.5 million of them since 1950, finding a clean one today will set you back nearly $80,000 AUD (and let’s not even talk about the price of splitties). Getting your hands on one has been next to impossible, but that’s all about to change.

Price indicative, there’s a distinctive flavour to this famous vehicle that the brand is looking to recapture with the release of the latest ID. Buzz. So have they done it?

Related: What’s Jeep up to with its all-electric future? It looks something like this.

Vw id buzz release date price and more information

Image: Volkswagen

VW ID. Buzz is All-Electric

Not looking to turn their manufacturing capabilities to Asia for the VW ID. Buzz the vehicle will be manufactured at the brand’s Hannover facility – in complete carbon neutrality, we might add – and will be based on VW Groups Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB) platform. Its architecture allows for further development of software and technology in the following years, benefiting new models such as the ID. Buzz, but also models that have already been delivered, by means of over-the-air updates.

“Both versions of the ID. Buzz are pioneering in terms of their sustainability: their manufacture and shipping have a carbon-neutral footprint and we’re also using recycled synthetic materials and the interior is completely free of any real leather,” said Carsten Intra, Chairman of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.

Related: Could Chevrolet’s Electric Silverado Take Down the Cybertruck?

Vw id buzz dashboard

Image: Volkswagen

What About Power?

Power and EVs generally go hand in hand – and while vehicles like the Porsche Taycan and Tesla Model S push the boundaries for outright speed, VW, BMW, and Audi see no real use for such extreme figures and choose to offer adequate power options by way of smaller batteries and motors. Would a Kombi with 750HP really make any sense anyway?

Regardless, here’s the VW ID. Buzz power options on offer;

  • Battery: 77 kWh (gross energy content: 82 kWh)
  • Motor: 150kW
  • Drive type: Rear-wheel Drive
  • Charge time: 5 to 80% in 30 minutes (170kW DC charge).

Beyond the ability to fast charge through DC networks the ID. Buzz will feature bidirectional charging that can feed unneeded energy from the battery into your home network (Vehicle-toHome). The power transfer and communication take place via a special DC bidirectional wall box.

Related: This Citroen Buggy is like a modern-day version of the Mini Moke, and we love it.

Vw id buzz cargo large interior view

Image: Volkswagen

Familiar Design All In the Name of Sustainable Mobility

While safety regulations seldom permit the latest Kombi to feature that hilarious (and fun) driving position directly over the front axle, VW has worked its engineers to fit “its safety relevance and technology into the ID. Buzz with those super short overhangs.” And it doesn’t stop there for nostalgia.

The slippery shape of the exterior reduces the drag coefficient to just 0.285 – 0.29 for the ID. Buzz Cargo reduces energy consumption and increases range. Just how slippery is it? Well, a Ferrari 488 has a drag coefficient of 0.330 to 0.324.

Another feature that has always been typical of the model line is the iconic front with its V-shaped front panel between the charismatic headlights. A feature accentuated on the new Buzz and while the headlights aren’t around anymore, they look quite sharp and the optional two-tone paintwork is striking and enjoyable at the same time. Duck egg blue would’ve been perfect, but we’ll opt for the highlighter yellow happily.

The interior of the new ID. Buzz is enormous in both room and physical capacity. In the lounge-like, friendly ambience of the MPV version, five people have ample room for travelling and for their luggage (1,121 litres of capacity). If the second row of seats is folded down, the load capacity increases to up to 2,205 litres. You can also stack two pallets in the rear if loaded transversely. Will we be seeing tradies driving around in EV Kombi Vans? Now that would be a sight to behold.

Vw id buzz cargo space

Image: Volkswagen

Price and Availability

Advance sales are due to start in May. With the ID. Buzz, Volkswagen of America will also be initiating the comeback of the so-called microbus in the USA and Canada. Availability for the Australian market is yet to be announced, with pricing to come at a later date. We can’t wait to jump behind the wheel of this new EV and cruise the streets of Maroubra beach just like old times. Long Live the Kombi Van.

Volkswagen Australia

Vw id buzz rear tray tables

Image: Volkswagen

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JOURNALIST

Ben McKimm

Ben lives in Sydney, Australia. He has a Bachelor's Degree (Media, Technology and the Law) from Macquarie University (2020). Outside of his studies, he has spent the last decade heavily involved in the automotive, technology and fashion world. Turning his passion and expertise into a Journalist position at Man of Many where he continues to write about everything that interests the modern man. Conducting car reviews on both the road and track, hands-on reviews of cutting-edge technology and employing a vast knowledge in the space of fashion and sneakers to his work. One day he hopes to own his own brand.